Bethany McKee trial begins for 2013 Joliet double murder

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Bethany McKee is one of four people charged in the gruesome 2013 murders of Eric Glover and Terrance Rankins. (WLS)

Bethany McKee, 20, is one of four people charged in the gruesome 2013 murders of Eric Glover and Terrance Rankins. Her murder trial began Monday.

McKee is facing first-degree murder charges. Adam Landerman, Alisa Massaro and Joshua Miner are also charged in connection with the strangling deaths of Glover and Rankins, both 22. Prosecutors also said the four allegedly stole money and drugs from their bodies.

Some of the evidence presented Monday included a 911 call made by Bill McKee, Bethany McKee's father, in January 2013. In it, he tells the dispatcher he is concerned his daughter may be involved in a crime and where to find the victims' bodies in Joliet.

In opening statements Monday, prosecutor Tricia McKenna said McKee needed money and planned the robbery with her friends, telling the judge: "She heard Terrance, her friend, being attacked, saying 'Why are you doing this to me?' and she still left the room," said McKenna.

In January 2013, Eric Glover and Terrance Rankins were found in a Joliet home with plastic bags on their heads. Prosecutors plan to play a video statement McKee made after her arrested and are relying on the testimony of Massaro as part of her plea deal.

But McKee's attorney, Chuck Beretz, told the judge: "You will not find Alisa Massaro's testimony to be fair or compelling."

The first witness to testify was Jennifer Ortega, a friend of McKee's, who appeared under subpoena. Ortega testified about Facebook messages and posts in which Ortega said McKee told her "I need to find some way to make money."

When McKee messages she is considering selling drugs, Ortega messages back: "I was going to say that but trying to be a good friend."

Joliet police officers testified Monday about details about what they found at the crime scene, including finding the victims' bodies. That testimony was very difficult for the victims' families, with some relatives leaving the courtroom during that testimony. The trial resumes Tuesday at 10 a.m.

Massaro, 20, pled guilty to lesser charges in May, in exchange for a ten-year prison sentence. Miner, 26, and Landerman, 21, are awaiting trial. The four were arrested after Glover and Rankins were found dead in Massaro's Joliet home in the 1100-block of North Hickory Street on Jan. 10, 2013.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.
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