EDWARDSVILLE — State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons announced a Belleville man pleaded guilty Wednesday for his role in the December 2015 death of Roderick L. Taylor.
George T. Tillman, 32, who was charged on Dec. 21, 2015, pleaded guilty to first degree murder, a Class M felony.
A short time after 7 p.m. on Dec. 17, 2015, a Brooklyn Police Department officer began a pursuit of the driver of a 2006 maroon Cadillac who fled from the officer after an attempted traffic stop on Illinois 3 in St. Clair County. The vehicle crashed near a roundabout at St. Clair Avenue and Collinsville Road in East St. Louis. The driver, Tillman, was taken to a local hospital with injuries while his vehicle was towed. It was during the inventory of the vehicle that the body of Taylor was discovered in the trunk of the car.
The investigation was led by Illinois State Police officers, who determined Taylor had been murdered earlier that evening at a home in the 2600 block of Logan in Granite City. He had been shot multiple times.
The house was the residence of Ashly S. Bonner, 27, who is also facing charges. During the course of the investigation, it was determined that Tillman and Bonner, who had a previous relationship, lured Taylor to Bonner’s home to rob him. It was during this robbery that Taylor was shot multiple times by Tillman before a subsequent struggle where the victim was also hit several times in the head with a VCR and frying pan. Following the struggle, Roderick was placed in the trunk of the Cadillac. It is believed he was still alive at this time. All three individuals knew one another and worked together at the same company.
Assistant State’s Attorney Joshua Jones, of the Violent Crimes Unit, will be seeking a sentence of 40 years in prison; penalty range for murder is 20 to 60 years in prison with the defendant required to serve 100 percent of his sentence.
Gibbons thanked Jones, the Illinois State Police, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office and the Brooklyn Police Department for their work on the case.
Tillman will remain in custody at the Madison County Jail in Edwardsville pending his sentencing by Associate Judge Neil Schroeder. Sentencing will be scheduled following the completion of a pre-sentencing investigation, which usually takes 4 to 6 weeks.