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updated: 8/1/2012 9:37 PM

Police: Men charged in fatal chase connected to McHenry Co. robbery

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  • Kenneth Cooper

    Kenneth Cooper

  • Cortez C. Holliman

    Cortez C. Holliman


Two Rockford men who were charged with armed robbery after a high-speed chase through Antioch that killed their accomplice have been charged with additional robbery counts out of McHenry County, authorities said.

McHenry County authorities tied Kenneth Cooper, 33, and Cortez C. Holliman, 25, to an armed robbery at the Chemung Country Store, 24102 Route 173, that occurred two days before the Antioch pursuit, the sheriff's office announced Wednesday.

Police said the men robbed a clerk at gunpoint of money and goods from the store at 11:40 p.m. July 13.

Information from witnesses and evidence obtained at the scene connected the men to the crime, according to the sheriff's office.

Cooper and Holliman were seriously injured July 15 after their getaway car crashed during a police chase at speeds of about 100 mph, according to the Antioch Police department.

Cooper and Holliman were riding in a vehicle driven by Paris Williams, 26, of Rockford on July 15 after the three robbed Bernie's Marathon, 830 Main St., in Antioch, according to police.

During the robbery the men, who were armed with a semiautomatic pistol, pepper-sprayed the gas station clerk and held the victim at gunpoint while demanding money, Antioch Police Chief Craig Somerville said.

During the high-speed chase, William's lost control of the Chevrolet sedan at Route 83 and Eagles Nest Road in Antioch and crashed into the ditch, causing the car to flip, Somerville said.

Williams was pronounced dead at the scene, while Cooper and Holliman were airlifted to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville in critical condition.

Evidence at the scene of the crash linked the men to a July 10 robbery at the BP Amoco Gas Station on the 600 block of West Route 173 in Antioch, Somerville said.

Police said all three men were on parole with active warrants, extensive criminal histories and gang affiliations, and are suspects in a series of violent armed robberies in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.

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