Jury trial scheduled for man accused of killing 7-year-old niece

By WEEK Producer

October 22, 2013 Updated Oct 22, 2013 at 7:42 PM CDT

EFFINGHAM, Ill. -- A jury trial has been scheduled for a Watson, Illinois man accused of killing his 7-year-old niece.

Justin DeRyke appeared in an Effingham County courtroom on Tuesday for a pretrial motion.

He faces a First Degree Murder charge for the death of Willow Long.

Willow's body was found two days after her mother reported her missing. According to Police, DeRyke confessed to killing Willow, but said it was to 'end her suffering' after she was impaled on a stick.

A trial is scheduled for December 2.