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Aug 09th
Home Sections MiscellaNEWS “Decision” on Illinois’ Double Murder Clarified
“Decision” on Illinois’ Double Murder Clarified PDF Print E-mail
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Tuesday, 28 December 2010 08:46



Journal Group Link International)


C HICAGO (jGLi) – Illinois Deputy State Attorney Marilyn Hite-Ross clarified Monday (Dec. 27) that Judge Ronald J. White of the Winnebago 17th Judicial Circuit Court in Rockford, Illinois, will merely be holding a “status (hearing) on court’s ruling not a sentencing” on Thursday (Dec. 30) on the two counts of first-degree murder of an elderly Filipino American couple who were brutally murdered during a robbery attempt in their Rockford home two years ago.


“The sentencing would come after a trial and we have not reached that stage in the proceedings yet,” Hite-Ross added.


When asked why the court website posted last Dec. 7, 2010, that “Decision, Set for Dec. 30, 2010, at 1:30 p.m.” on the case, the state prosecutor of the case said, “I have not visited the court website. I don’t know who posts that information.”


She said, “There have been several pre-trial motions filed by defense counsel and Judge White has been ruling only on pretrial motions. In these types of cases, it is not unusual for there to be several pre-trial motions that are heard by the court before a trial date is set.


“Again, there has not been a trial and no trial date has been set. We have been tendering discovery to Mr. Jones’ attorneys and they have been reviewing the discovery to determine what if any additional pretrial motions should be filed.”


Only last month, Judge White denied the motion of defendant, Ommarian Tollpherian Jones, 25, to declare “the Illinois death penalty statute unconstitutional for allowing the imposition of a death sentence without requiring the state to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the deal is the appropriate sentence.”


Defendant Pleads “Not Guilty”


W hile earlier, Judge White also conducted a “fitness hearing” on Jones and found him “fit to stand trial” after pleading not guilty to the charges.


Jones earlier demanded a bench trial but is “not demanding a speedy trial.”


Although, there is a moratorium for the imposition of death penalty in Illinois, Jones is eligible to be sentenced for death penalty.


Jones was charged with two counts of first degree murder for the “blunt instrument” killing of Reynato “Ray” V. Cardino, 77, and his wife, Leticia “Letie” V. Cardino, 75, in their home at 2623 Pleasant View, Rockford, in the early evening of July 8, 2009. He was also charged with seriously injuring the Cardinos's son, Reyle, 51.


Jones appeared to have gained entry in the early evening in the residence of the Cardinos, ahead of the Filipino-American couple, who just came home from shopping, in what appeared to be a burglary.


It was while Jones was allegedly killing the couple with “blunt instruments” when the couple’s son, Reyle Cardino, arrived in the couple’s home. Jones was quoted as telling Reyle, “You are next.” A violent scrimmage between the two followed. Reyle sustained injuries in the face before Jones could flee.


Samples of skin taken from the fingernails of Reyle led to the identity of Jones through DNA tests.


Meanwhile, Jones’ mother, Helen F. Jones, was later charged with two counts of charges of obstruction of justice and destroying evidence. She did not call 9-1-1 when her son showed up at home after the killing of the couple and injuring the couple’s son.


The Joneses live less than two blocks away from the victims’ home.


Ray Cardino was a retired mechanical engineer who worked part-time assembling bikes at Wal-Mart while Letie V. Cardino was a retired licensed architect who worked as building inspector for the city of Rockford.


Reynaldo V. Cardino and Leticia Cardino are natives of Baliangao, and Sapang Dalaga, Misamis Occidental in the Philippines. # # #


Editor’s Note: To contact the author, please e-mail him at:  (


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