Christopher Harris convicted on all charges in Beason murders

By Tyler Emken

May 31, 2013 Updated Feb 4, 2014 at 11:05 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Christopher Harris was convicted Friday on all 38 counts against him in the 2009 murders of five members of the Gee family in Beason, Illinois.

After five and a half hours of deliberations, the jury returned with a verdict at approximately 12:45 pm.

Harris, 34, was convicted of first degree murder in the deaths of Rick Gee, Ruth Gee, Justina Constant, Dillen Constant and Austin Gee.

All five victims were viciously beaten to death with a tire iron in their Beason home during the early hours of September 21, 2009. The only surviving member of the family, three year-old Tabitha Gee, suffered severe head injuries from the attack.

Harris was also convicted for the attempted murder of Tabitha Gee, as well as aggravated battery of a child, home invasion and armed robbery.

After the verdicts were read, Harris clasped his hands together and looked down at the defense table. Members of the Gee family were emotional. Dillen's biological mother was handing out pictures of Dillen for the media.

Logan County State's Attorney said in a statement that he hoped the conviction will help the Gee family heal after their loss.

"The jury's verdict brings with it some justice to the tragic and brutal loss of life of Rick Gee, Ruth Gee, Justina Constant, Dillen Constant and Austin Gee, and the the physical and emotional trauma on the child who survives," Wright said.

Harris will return to the custody of the Logan County Sheriff's Office and be held at Logan County Jail. Sentencing for Harris will be held at the Logan County Courthouse on July 19 at 1:30 pm. Harris faces a mandatory life sentence for his crimes.

Defense Attorney Dan Fultz said that he will not be handling any appeal. However, he said he will assist Harris in filing his post trial motions.