NAPERVILLE, Ill. (TCD) — A jury found a 43-year-old woman guilty last week for playing a role in the shooting death of a missing 20-year-old man and dumping his body in a trash can near a vacant home.
On Friday, Oct. 27, the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office announced Candice Jones was convicted of first-degree murder and armed robbery in connection with the 2018 fatal shooting of Michael Armendariz. The jury reportedly came back with the verdict after 90 minutes of deliberation. Her son, Ernest Collins, was convicted of murder and armed robbery with a firearm in September for his role in Armdenariz’s killing.
According to the state’s attorney’s office, on Jan. 18, 2018, Naperville Police went to a home on Whispering Hills Drive to take a missing person report on behalf of Armdendariz, who was last seen four days prior at around 9:30 p.m.
Jones, Collins, and his girlfriend, Cassandra Green, reportedly “hatched a scheme to rob Armendariz with a gun.”
On the evening of Jan. 14, 2018, Green sent Armendariz a Snapchat message. Minutes later, he got into an SUV that Green was driving. Then, Collins, who was hiding in the back seat, shot Armendariz in the head twice execution-style. Green and Collins drove Armendariz’s body to Jones’ home in Chicago and left his body in a trash can. They reportedly left the garbage bin in Jones’ garage, then moved it to a vacant residence next door.
On Jan. 15, 2018, Green and Collins stole Armendariz’s keys and burglarized his apartment.
According to WGN-TV, Armendariz’s body was discovered in June 2018.
Collins and Green were arrested Feb. 4, 2019, in Rockford, while Jones was taken into custody two days later in Chicago.
The state’s attorney’s office said Green pleaded guilty Aug. 19 to armed robbery with a firearm.
Jones faces 75 years in prison, while her son could be sentenced to up to life in prison.
DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said about the verdict, “The diabolical plot devised by Candice Jones, Ernest Collins, and Cassandra Green, and the execution of that plot, left a void in the lives of Michael’s surviving family and friends that will never be filled. I wish them strength as they continue their lives, having replaced Michael’s presence with just his memory.”
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