Guilty Verdict for Man Charged in Roommate's Fatal 2012 Stabbing
A jury found Herbert Van Stephens guilty of first degree murder Friday, Jan. 25, according to a spokeswoman from the Cook County State's Attorney's Office.
After about a day and half of deliberations, a Cook County jury found a Lake View man guilty of first-degree murder Friday, Jan. 25, in the 2012 fatal stabbing of his roommate, according to officials.
Herbert Van Stephens was charged with murder last March, according to reports, for the stabbing death of 25-year-old John E. Atkinson the 600 block of West Stratford Place. Stephens, 52 at the time, was held on a $500,000 bail.
His sentencing is set for March 6.
The pair were reportedly dating. Shortly before midnight on March 6, 2012, a third roommate called police after he awoke to the racket of a struggle, and came out of his room to find his roommates fighting, CBS reported after Van Stephens' arrest. The man saw one of his roommates holding a knife, and both already looked like they had been stabbed, police said.
An autopsy determined Atkinson had been stabbed multiple times, including 30 times in the chest. The knife pierced his heart and lungs and an additional 10 times to the abdomen, reports said. Van Stephens was also hospitalized at the time in critical condition.
The guilty verdict came in between noon and 1 p.m. Friday, said Cook County State's Attorney's Office spokeswoman Lisa Gordon.