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updated: 8/25/2017 4:31 PM

Sanity exam delayed for St. Charles man cops say killed dad, thought he was God

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  • John Shenko is charged with murdering his father outside their home in St. Charles Township.

    John Shenko is charged with murdering his father outside their home in St. Charles Township.

  • A Kane County Sheriff's Deputy on Aug. 15 secured the perimeter around the St. Charles Township home on Longview Drive where authorities say John Shenko murdered his father.

      A Kane County Sheriff's Deputy on Aug. 15 secured the perimeter around the St. Charles Township home on Longview Drive where authorities say John Shenko murdered his father.
    Harry Hitzeman | Staff Photographer

 
 

A Kane County judge Friday delayed a request from prosecutors for a sanity evaluation of a man accused of stabbing his father to death outside their St. Charles Township home and telling responding deputies, "My name is God. I killed Satan."

John Shenko, 22, is at the Kane County jail on $2 million bail on first-degree murder charges in the death of Kevin J. Shenko, 60.

A confidential court evaluation was returned Thursday and Judge John Barsanti said he had a bona fide doubt Shenko was fit to stand trial, understood the proceedings and could assist in his defense.

Barsanti delayed any decision on an evaluation at the Kane County Diagnostic Center until after a fitness hearing Sept. 28.

The court motion arguing in favor of the diagnostic center evaluation provided a chilling account from the first sheriff's deputy on the scene Aug 13.

The deputy saw the men covered in blood and Shenko straddling his father's naked body repeating, "Die, die, die," according to court records. The deputy ordered Shenko off his father, who was not breathing or moving and had more than 100 stab wounds.

"I'm not getting off him, you're going to have to shoot me," Shenko replied.

The deputy twice fired his Taser at Shenko, handcuffed him, asked his name and if anyone else was in the home.

"No one else is here. My name is God. I killed Satan. You're going to have to trust me, you're going to have to believe in me," Shenko said, according to the court motion.

Kevin Shenko was pronounced dead at Delnor Hospital.

Jan Shenko told investigators that her son had a history of mental illness. At 3 he was extremely aggressive toward other kids and at 5 was diagnosed with autism and ADHD, according the motion.

In third grade, Shenko told his mon he would kill himself by stabbing himself in the stomach. In seventh grade he drew a map of a plan to kill a teacher, according to the motion.

He abused his mom, punching her in the face without provocation, and she and her daughter slept in the same room with the door locked because they feared him, the motion says, and Shenko was hospitalized three times for psychological reasons.

Shenko appeared in court Friday wearing a fluorescent jail uniform signifying he was on suicide watch.

If found unfit for trial, Shenko, who is described in court records and by a defense attorney as bipolar and autistic, would be sent to the state's Department of Human Services for up to a year in attempt to reach fitness level.

Assistant Public Defender Brenda Willet objected to an evaluation at the diagnostic center, saying an exam while authorities were still determining her client's fitness to stand trial was premature.

"There is no urgency at this point," Willett said. "(Delaying any exam) protect (Shenko's) due process rights, his Fifth Amendment right (against self-incrimination), his ability to assist in his defense."

The murder charges carry a punishment of 20 to 60 years in prison with no chance of early release. A different outcome than prison could be agreed upon if the court finds he was guilty but mentally ill or if he was insane and did not understand the criminality of his actions.

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