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updated: 7/30/2013 4:43 AM

Prosecutors: Addison man 'angry and jealous' when he stabbed wife, stepson

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  • Kurtis Worley

    Kurtis Worley


Kurtis Worley told police he was "angry and jealous" because his wife wanted a divorce when he fatally stabbed her as she slept inside their Addison home, prosecutors said Monday.

Worley, 33, also is accused of stabbing his 15-year-old stepson in the throat after the teen and his 12-year-old brother tried to intervene.

Prosecutors said Worley then slashed his own wrists and cut his own neck with a box cutter.

He told police he "wanted to kill himself because he realized what he had done," Assistant State's Attorney Anne Therieau said in bond court.

DuPage County Judge Elizabeth Sexton set a $3 million bail for Worley, who is charged with the first-degree murder of his wife, Martha, 39, and the aggravated domestic battery of his stepson.

The suspect appeared in court by video feed with bandages covering both wrists.

Authorities said his stepsons called 911 about 3 a.m. Friday after hearing screams from their mother's bedroom on the 900 block of North Craig Place.

Therieau said the elder stepson was stabbed after the boys pounded on the bedroom door, which was locked, and were met by Worley, whom they described to police as "naked and looking like ... a psychopath."

After being locked out again, she said, the younger brother armed himself with kitchen knives and tried unsuccessfully to get back in the room.

Paramedics arrived to find Worley bleeding from self-inflicted injuries, and his wife with multiple stab wounds and blunt head trauma.

Therieau said Martha Worley was pronounced dead about 5 p.m. Friday at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood.

The injured stepson, who remains hospitalized, underwent surgery for a throat injury that could affect his speaking voice, authorities said.

The younger stepson and the couple's 9-year-old daughter were taken into the protective custody of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, which placed them with a family member.

In a video interview, prosecutors said, Kurtis Worley re-enacted the murder and confessed he was angry at his wife because she wanted a divorce.

He told investigators that after spending Thursday evening with family and friends, he tried for about an hour to persuade the victim to continue their relationship.

When she refused, authorities said, Worley went to his garage and drank vodka and tequila.

Prosecutors said the victim was asleep by the time Worley returned armed with two knives. He told police he stood over her for up to 15 minutes before repeatedly stabbing her in a "pounding" motion.

"He reported he was angry and jealous," Therieau said.

The victim sustained multiple stab wounds, severe head trauma and cuts to her head and face, according to prosecutors.

Police found two blood-soaked knives at the crime scene, Therieau said.

The slaying took place a day after a photo was posted on a Facebook page for Kurtis Worley with the words, "Nothing hurts more than being disappointed by the single person you thought would never hurt you."

A previous post dated Wednesday was a drawing of a man with the words, "Real men never beat women ... they beat the a***s who do."

Worley has been under investigation by DCFS since Friday for abuse allegations involving all three children who lived in the home, according to DCFS spokesman Dave Clarkin.

He said two of the children were placed with a "loving" family member, while the third remains hospitalized. They are all considered to be in the protected custody of the state.

Clarkin said DCFS routinely offers a "wide range" of support services to children who witness or endure abuse, neglect or violence in the home.

In this case, he said, the children "acted heroically in a desperate attempt to save their mother's life."

"They should all have our sympathies," Clarkin said.

In bond court, Worley told the judge he worked at a flooring distributor warehouse and was unlikely to post the necessary $300,000 bond to get out of jail. A public defender was appointed to represent him.

His next court date is Aug. 26 in front of Judge Blanche Hill Fawell.

• Daily Herald staff writer Elena Ferrarin contributed to this report.

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