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Henderson pleads ‘not guilty’

Next hearing for suspect in Diamond Bradley killing will be March 15

HENNEPIN — “Not guilty” is the plea entered March 1 at a hearing for Richard A. Henderson, the 26-year-old Standard man whom investigators believe stabbed and killed Diamond Bradley, the 16-year-old Spring Valley girl he met online.

Henderson, smiling, looking relaxed and much thinner than in his mugshot, is charged with the Class 3 felony of concealment of a homicide death and is being held on a $1 million bond.

Appearing in front of Judge Stephen A. Kouri with his attorney, public defender Roger Bolin, Henderson waived the reading of charges, and Bolin requested a jury trial.

Bolin announced he had three concerns to work out with Putnam County State’s Attorney Christina Judd-Mennie before the date of the next hearing was set.

The first was for the preservation of electronic evidence. Judd-Mennie said after the hearing that it was a request that any cell phones or computers seized during the investigation be kept in good condition. The second was what Mennie said was a standard and required by law, sharing of evidence obtained during the discovery phase. Bolin’s third request was for the field notes from the investigating agencies.

“It’s my understanding there were multiple agencies involved,” Bolin said.

Investigating agencies include the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, the Spring Valley Police Department, the LaSalle County Sheriff’s Office, the Bureau County Sheriff’s Office, the LaSalle Police Department, Tri-DENT, the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office, the Putnam County State’s Attorney, the Bureau County State’s Attorney, the Putnam County Death Investigator and the Illinois State Police Crime Scene Services.

Judd-Mennie said after the hearing she’s yet to receive the test results and lab reports pertinent to the case and that the information will be shared with Bolin upon their receipt.

“More charges will likely be filed against Richard A. Henderson as the investigation progresses,” Putnam County Sheriff Kevin Doyle previously said during a news conference at the Spring Valley Police Department.

Diamond Bradley was last was seen by her family the evening of Jan. 23 and was reported missing the following morning. Her body was found Jan. 27 alongside 850th North Road in Putnam County. She had been stabbed multiple times.

According to Doyle, investigators think the two met online and that Henderson picked the teen up near her home between 6:30 and 7:30 a.m. on Jan. 24. Henderson then allegedly drove to the spot where her body was found and killed her after an altercation.

Henderson was arrested after being interviewed at the police station. Tips, interviews, surveillance cameras and pings from Diamond’s cellphone link him to her death, Doyle has said.

Judge Kouri set the date for the next hearing for 9:30 a.m. on March 15.

Although officials are still waiting for results and reports to be completed, Doyle said investigators are confident they’ve arrested the man responsible for the killing.

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