New trial date set for man accused in club owner's death

By WEEK Producer

May 2, 2014 Updated May 2, 2014 at 11:15 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- A new trial date has been set for a Peoria man accused of fatal stabbing a downtown club owner.

Bryan Stewart, 30, appeared in court Friday for a scheduling conference.

He is charged with First Degree Murder in the death of Todd Scholl.

Stewart allegedly stabbed Scholl in a first floor storage area of a building at Main and Perry in Peoria. He then set two fires to cover up the incident.

Stewart has claimed self-defense in the killing, telling told police he had gone to the building to speak to Scholl about a job.

According to Stewart, Scholl wanted to have sex with him and put a knife to his throat. Stewart told police he kicked Scholl and was able to get the knife. During the scuffle, Stewart said he stabbed Scholl in both the chest and back. He then set fire to Scholl's body.

Assistant State's Attorney Kenny said arson investigators found two places where a fire had been set and that an accelerant had been used.

In addition to First Degree Murder, Stewart faces "Class X" arson charges because of the threat to some two dozen residents of the building at Main and Perry.

His trial is set for May 12th at 9am.