A woman was found dead in her home just west of Streator Tuesday afternoon and a man has been taken into custody in connection with the death, LaSalle Sheriff Tom Templeton announced Wednesday morning at a press conference.
The cause of death for Damaris Lopez Pacheco, 41, 1387 E. Spring Lake Road, was not released as an autopsy was being conducted Wednesday, Templeton said.
In custody is Carl Lenard, 38, a transient who came to the Streator area last year with a carnival and decided to stay in the area. Templeton would not discuss whether Lenard was acquainted with Pacheco or the circumstances surrounding her death.
The victim's 11-year-old son was also at the home at the time of the incident and was himself injured. The boy was taken to OSF St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa. No further information was given about his injuries or condition.
Lenard has not been formally charged, but is expected to appear in LaSalle County Circuit Court today where more information would be detailed, Templeton said.
During the press conference, Templeton stated police were called to Pacheco's home at 4:07 p.m. A neighbor had called and told police a woman was being assaulted at the Pacheco residence.
When police arrived they found the victim was deceased.
At the scene, Templeton said deputies were advised to search for an older model black Lincoln Continental. No sooner was that vehicle description relayed to police when another sheriff's deputy saw the car heading north into Ottawa on Route 23.
“The deputy activated his lights and the chase was on,” Templeton said.
Sheriff's deputies and Ottawa Police officers pursued the vehicle which then struck another vehicle in a Casey's store parking lot.
Templeton said Lenard “jumped from the vehicle, but was quickly apprehended without further incident.”
The sheriff said search warrants were executed on Lenard, the vehicle and the victim's house.
Templeton stated his department, along with the LaSalle County coroner's office and state's attorney's office are continuing to investigate.