Strange twist in Peoria homicide

By Denise Jackson

September 27, 2012 Updated Jul 11, 2013 at 4:35 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- One local man convicted of murder and robbery more than three decades ago has become Peoria's latest homicide victim.

Michael Robinson was sentenced to 60 years in prison for the 1977 murder and robbery of Bradley University Professor Dominic Volturno. Robinson was paroled in January of 2010.

Peoria Police say the 54-year-old Robinson died of a single gunshot wound to the head Wednesday night during an attempted robbery on Starr Street. According to police, Robinson and another man were sitting on the back porch of the home at 2214 West Starr Street when three men approached them.

Authorities say the gunmen shot Robinson and the other man once in the head.

Former Peoria County State's Attorney Kevin Lyons presided over parole hearings for Robinson and two other accomplices. He says it's ironic that Robinson met fate similar to his victim.

"There were three persons that he was a part of he and two others and they were sort of a roving band of thugs before Dr. Volturno's death, having beaten and robbed mostly elderly persons in the Peoria and East Peoria area prior to that," said Lyons. "So, there was an alert that these people existed."

The Peoria County Coroner says Robinson was pronounced dead at the scene just after 10:00 p.m. Wednesday night.

Police are not releasing the name of the other victim. That man suffered a gunshot wound to the head, but police say his injuries do not appear to be life threatening.

Just as in the Volturno case, Peoria police are looking for three suspects in Wednesday's homicide.