A Mokena man was indicted Tuesday on a first-degree murder charge in the stabbing death of an Ottawa woman in her apartment. Prosecutors also filed seldom-seen charges.
A La Salle County grand jury returned the charge of first-degree murder against 29-year-old Michael Swift. He is being held on $3 million bond while awaiting trial in the stabbing death of 21-year-old Grace Taylor in her apartment on Ottawa’s south side.
The sentencing range is 20-60 years in prison with no possibility of probation. Prosecutors have not ruled out the possibility of an elevated sentencing range based on whether the act was “brutal and heinous” as defined by statute.
The grand jury also returned two counts of abuse of a corpse/sexual conduct, a Class 2 felony carrying three to seven years in prison.
Swift will appear Thursday for arraignment before Judge Cynthia M. Raccuglia, who is likely to set trial dates at that time.
Ottawa police were contacted April 19 and advised to check on Taylor after Swift made troubling comments to one or more members of his family. Police visited the apartment in the 300 block of West McKinley Road and found Taylor died from multiple knife wounds. Investigators also found evidence of a defensive struggle.
Swift quickly was developed as a suspect, placed into custody with help from Mokena police and, according to Assistant La Salle County State’s Attorney Greg Sticka, sat for a taped interview with police.
Sticka said that in Swift’s taped statement, Swift admitted to going to Taylor’s apartment in the early morning hours, armed with a knife and intending to kill her, and entered the apartment through an unlocked door. Swift told police he acted in “anger and jealousy,” Sticka said.