Murder Charges Dropped Against Naperville Woman, Citing Abuse

file image of courtroom at DuPage County Courthouse
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Murder charges were dropped for a Naperville woman who killed her boyfriend after undergoing what DuPage County State’s Attorney Bob Berlin called “chronic domestic abuse at the hands of the victim.”

Strength Of Evidence Drove the Decision

Berlin discussed the decision to drop the charges against April Turner in a press release on Thursday, which read in part:

“I made this decision following a thorough and extensive examination of recently discovered evidence and information provided to my office by both the defendant’s attorneys and investigators from the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office regarding the victim’s alleged prior conduct and violent character.”

Berlin went on to say that the strength of that evidence would prohibit the prosecution from both moving ahead in good faith, and from meeting the burden of proof in the case. He said it showed “unequivocally” that Turner had been a victim of domestic abuse.

Boyfriend of Eight Years Shot And Killed

On March 17, 2020, Turner shot and killed Nicarro Laroy Drake, who had been her boyfriend for eight years. It happened while the two were in their home on Lakewood Drive, as reported by the Daily Herald. The two had been gathered there with two women. After the women left, Turner accused Drake of flirting with them, after which, she told police, Drake attacked her. Turner said she in turn hit him with a towel bar. The two women then returned, as Turner took a gun from the closet and shot him. Afterward, she called 911.

Fact Based Decision to Drop Murder Charges

In Tuesday’s press release, Berlin said his decision was made after solid consideration of the evidence.

“I fully understand the weight and consequences of this decision to both the victim’s family and to Ms. Turner,” Berlin said. “I made this decision however, focused squarely on justice, based solely on the facts and circumstances of the case as well as the law in Illinois regarding the admissibility of evidence in self-defense cases.”

Naperville News 17’s Kim Pirc reports.

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