Effingham County Man indicted for Niece's death

By WEEK Reporter

September 18, 2013 Updated Sep 19, 2013 at 9:34 AM CDT

EFFINGHAM COUNTY, Ill. -- An Effingham County man is indicted on three counts of first-degree murder, alleging that he stabbed his 7-year-old niece to death.

Wednesday's indictment replaces a criminal complaint bearing those charges against Justin DeRyke, 22, earlier this month.

DerRke claims Willow Long fell onto a brush pile and pierced her neck with a stick outside of their Watson, Illinois home on September 7th.

He then stabbed the child to quote "end her suffering."

DeRyke is due in court in Effingham County Thursday afternoon.