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Quincy High graduates death a tragedy

A pregnant teen who was police say was raped, beaten and killed in a LeRoy home earlier this week was a Quincy High School graduate.

Jodi Nicole McGrew, 19, who lived in Hallsville with her parents, was found dead Tuesday morning in an upstairs bedroom of a home owned by the parents of her sister's husband, Jason Marksteiner.

Marksteiner, 21, of LeRoy, about 15 miles east of Bloomington, faces multiple charges in McGrew's death.

"It's a tragedy," QHS Principal Terry Ellerman said Friday night. "I knew who she was. I met her a few times. She was a nice young lady with a bright future."

Ellerman said McGrew, a 2007 graduate, was involved in chorus.

Family members told the (Bloomington) Pantagraph that McGrew was a "fun-loving girl" who was always the first to smile. Her cousin, Lacie Homan of Normal, said she loved singing and sang in church.

"She had an amazing voice and she was going to go far," Homan told the Pantagraph.

McGrew had plans to go to college and raise her baby girl, who was due early next year.

"She definitely had dreams all of her own," her aunt, Jodi Wallace of Bloomington, told the Pantagraph. "She was very, very much looking forward to being a mother."

McGrew was in her second trimester and died of blunt-force trauma to the head with strangulation listed as a "significant contributing factor," according to preliminary autopsy results.

Marksteiner was charged in McLean County Circuit Court with three counts of murder, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and three counts of intentional homicide of an unborn child.

McGrew stayed at the home of her brother-in-law's parents on Monday night so she could baby-sit Marksteiner's three children, prosecutors said.

Marksteiner's wife, Samantha, and the three children were sleeping in the room during the attack, the Pantagraph reported.

First Assistant State's Attorney Kim Campbell said in court that Samantha Marksteiner told authorities that she woke up and saw her sister and husband both naked on the floor, the Pantagraph reported. She said she did not hear the attack, and that she woke up when an alarm went off at 6:15 a.m. Tuesday.

The Pantagraph reports that Marksteiner told police he got home from work Monday night and met up with his wife, children and McGrew at the home, and he and his wife drank alcohol, prosecutors said.

It isn't clear if Marksteiner has an attorney. He is on suicide watch at the McLean County jail and is receiving counseling, the Pantagraph reported.

He is jailed on $1 million bond and will be arraigned Nov. 14. Campbell said Thursday that State's Attorney Bill Yoder will decide whether to pursue the death penalty against Marksteiner.

Marksteiner has a criminal history, the Pantagraph reported.

In August, he was charged with criminal damage to property and disorderly conduct after police said he damaged his mother-in-law's vehicle. He got 12 months of court supervision and was ordered to undergo drug and alcohol treatment.

In August 2007, Samantha Marksteiner filed two petitions for order of protections against her husband. Both were dismissed when she failed to appear in court.

Funeral services for McGrew will be at 11 a.m. Monday in the Calvert Funeral Home in Clinton, with visitation beginning an hour before the services.

The Associated Press provided information for this story.


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