2 charged with murder in death of man whose body washed up on lakeshore in Highland Park last fall

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Friday, March 17, 2023
2 charged in murder of man whose body washed up in Highland Park
Jacob Firestone and Nicholas Caban are charged with murder in the death of Michael Ascaridis, whose body washed up on the shore of Lake Michigan in Highland Park in fall 2022.

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. (WLS) -- Two men have been charged with murder in the death of a man whose body washed up on the lakeshore in Highland Park last fall.

The Lake County (IL) Sheriff's Office announced Thursday that 19-year-old Jacob Firestone and 20-year-old Nicholas Caban are both charged with one count of second-degree murder in Matt Ascaridis' death.

On Sept. 17, 2022, Highland Park police responded to a report of an unresponsive person on the shore of Lake Michigan. When they arrived, they found the body of 45-year-old Ascaridis.

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The initial investigation found Ascaridis had a confrontation with two people over noise complaints around 1 a.m. the night before.

"We do know that he did leave his home he confronted these individuals," said Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Spokesman Christopher Covelli said at the time. "There was a violent encounter that occurred between a 45-year-old man, a 20-year-old and an 18-year-old."

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Investigators said the confrontation turned violent, resulting in Ascaridis' death, and injuries to the two accused killers which landed them in the hospital.

Police identified Firestone and Caban early in the investigation, and searched Caban's home, where a gun with a scratched-off serial number was found. He was charged with a felony weapons count for that, but a gun was not used in the incident with Ascaridis, and it was not a robbery.

Firestone was initially charged with two counts of obstructing justice after investigators said he tried to conceal evidence after the fatal encounter.

Both Firestone and Caban had posted cash bond for their previous charges. They are due back in court Friday to have new cash bond set for the murder charges.