Tue. May 28th, 2024

A 71-year-old Illinois landlord has been charged with murder, after authorities say he stabbed and killed a 6-year-old boy and seriously wounded a 32-year-old woman because they are Muslim, according to reports.

Joseph Czuba has been charged with one count each of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and aggravated battery, and two counts of hate crime.

According to the Will County Sheriff’s Office around 11:38 a.m., the woman called 911 from a home near the intersection of South Lincoln Highway and Lily Cache Road in southwest suburban Plainfield Township. The victim said her landlord was attacking her with a knife as she ran to the bathroom to call 911.

Officials say when deputies arrived on the scene they found the Czuba sitting outside on the ground near the driveway of the home with a laceration on his forehead.

Inside deputies found two victims, the 32-year-old woman, and an 6-year-old boy. Police initially said the boy was 8 years old, but later said that initial information was incorrect.

The boy had been stabbed 26 times, and the woman had been stabbed more than a dozen times.

The woman was transported to a hospital in serious condition, and the boy was transported in critical condition. He was later pronounced dead. Their names have not been released.

Czuba was treated and released from the hospital and transported to the Will County Sheriff’s Office Public Safety Complex for questioning. Sheriff’s police said he did not talk to detectives, but investigators were able to determine he targeted the victims because they are Muslim, due to the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas.

Neighbors said it’s normally a very quiet area, although they were a bit concerned at times about signs in front of the house.

“He always had signs around times of elections and that were pretty angry about what was going on politically and locally here. So I’m hoping that both of them survive,” Jim Stein said.

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By Buffy Gunner

Independent Journalist + Business Owner | Lover of all things true crime. Mantra: Only YOU can be YOU. | Los Angeles Born | buffygunner@illicitdeeds.com