The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Chicago Grandmother Also Charged In Grandson's Killing Of Grandfather

By Amy Cavanaugh in News on Apr 7, 2013 6:00PM

In a story that grows increasingly more bizarre, a grandmother has now been charged along with her grandson in the killing of William Strickland, 72. Janet Strickland, 64, was arrested Thursday and charged with one count of first-degree murder and one count of armed robbery with a firearm in her husband's March 2 homicide. Bail was set at $500,000 for Janet Strickland today.

The grandson, also named William Strickland, 19, was arrested on March 28 and charged with the murder of his grandfather. Prosecutors said that grandmother and grandson then used Strickland's money to buy a car, home furnishings, tattoos, gym shoes and other items.

The Tribune reports, "Janet Strickland told her grandson that she was 'sick' of his grandfather and that she wanted him dead, prosecutors allege."

"She stated ... that she wished he was not here and she wanted him gone," Assistant State's Attorney Jacqueline Kwilos said during the bond hearing.

On the Thursday before the shooting, Strickland told her grandson that she wanted it done on the next Saturday, Kwilos said.

Initially the two had discussed having someone else kill him, but Strickland later told his grandmother he would do the shooting himself, Kwilos alleged.

Prosecutors said that Janet Strickland admitted that she unlocked the door to let her husband out for his dialysis treatment, knowing that her grandson would kill him with his grandfather's gun. She was a beneficiary of her husband's bank account.

According to the Tribune, neighbors spoke highly about the couple:

And Janet often smelled like she had been cooking a good meal, said Theolene Shears, 84, who lives next door.

"He always praised her, the things she did," said Shears. "She was a good housekeeper. She kept him well fed."

"He seemed very happy with her and she with him," said Shears as she sat down on the floor outside her kitchen.

"That's what's so surprising," said Leon Shears, Theolene's husband of 61 years.

Janet Strickland is in the hospital being treated for lung disease and did not appear in court. She was arrested after a witness identified her. Her grandson is beng held without bail.