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July 27, 2021

ATTORNEY GENERAL RAOUL: DANVILLE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER AND DISMEMBERMENT

Chicago  — Attorney General Kwame Raoul today announced a Danville man was found guilty of first-degree murder and dismembering and concealing the body of a Danville woman in 2017.

A Vermilion County jury found Ocheil Keys, 26, of Danville, guilty of one count of first-degree murder, two counts of dismembering a human body and three counts of concealment of a homicidal death in the murder of Barbara Rose, 50, of Danville. Vermilion County Circuit Court Judge Nancy Fahey set Key’s sentencing hearing for Sept. 2, 2021.

“I am pleased with the jury’s decision and pray it brings some degree of healing to the family and friends of Barbara Rose,” Raoul said. “I appreciate the support of the Vermilion County State’s Attorney’s office and the Danville Police Department in helping to hold the defendant accountable for this horrific murder, and I look forward to continuing these partnerships to help protect residents from violent crimes.”

On Oct. 22, 2017, Keys shot and killed Rose, his longtime girlfriend. After waiting for her to die, Keys took steps to hide Rose’s body and told her family and friends that she left the state to buy a car. Keys later took Rose’s body to an abandoned house and lit her body on fire in an attempt to destroy evidence. When this was unsuccessful, Keys tried to avoid detection by law enforcement by dismembering Rose’s body. Investigators found Rose’s body in a car owned by Keys’ mother following an intensive week-long missing persons investigation led by the Danville Police Department, investigators.

The Attorney General’s office prosecuted the case in cooperation with Vermilion County State’s Attorney Jacqueline M. Lacy’s office.

“Today’s jury verdict of guilty against Ocheil Keys clearly demonstrates that the good people of our community simply will not stand for violent murderers who dismember their victims,” Lacy said. “I would like to thank the Danville Police Department for their hard work in this case. I also would like to take this opportunity to thank Attorney General Kwame Raoul and his entire staff for their assistance to the State’s Attorney’s office in the prosecution of this murderer. Our continued partnership in the ongoing battle against violent crime truly is an asset to Vermilion County.”

“This case was very horrific in nature and what happened to Barb was unthinkable. This guilty verdict is only a small part of the healing process for the family but at least they can move forward now knowing that Mr. Keys was brought to justice,” Commander Joshua Webb said. “The Danville Police Department would like to thank the Illinois State Police Crime Scene Unit along with the Vermilion County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Illinois Attorney General’s Office for all of their assistance”.

Deputy Bureau Chief Jonathan McKay and Assistant Attorney General Dan Weiler handled the case for Raoul’s Criminal Prosecutions and Trials Assistance Bureau.

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