Man on release in domestic charge kills wife, self in Villa Park, authorities say

A man released from jail earlier this month on misdemeanor domestic battery charges shot and killed his wife Friday night in Villa Park, authorities said.

Winston Elguezabal, 47, had been arrested April 14, and pretrial released April 16 on a GPS monitor with an order to stay at least 1,000 feet away from Julie Elguezabal, 49, according to Villa Park police and the DuPage County state’s attorney’s office.

But around 11:53 p.m. Friday, police were dispatched to a home on the 300 block of East Monroe, for an alarm on the GPS monitor.

Responding officers removed two teenagers and the family dog from the home.

A SWAT team then found the Elguezabals dead in a bedroom. A gun was found next to Winston Elguezabal, authorities said.

Per the terms of his pretrial release, Elguezabal was supposed to surrender all guns he may have had and his Firearm Owner’s Identification card.

State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said, in a news release, that information in a DuPage County Domestic Violence Report his office received before Elguezabal’s First Appearance Court hearing indicated he did not have access to a gun. Elguezabal surrendered the FOID, as required, April 17.

Prosecutors did not seek to detain Elguezabal pretrial. He was accused of pulling Julie Elguezabal’s hair, and punching her several times in the face, neck and back, according to court records.

“In the aftermath of this horrific incident, I intend to meet with all stakeholders to enhance protections for victims of domestic battery and improve the manner and timeliness in which information is provided to prosecutors, while still meeting the requirements of the SAFE-T-Act,” Berlin said.

The SAFE-T Act eliminated cash bail last September, and required instead that people have a hearing, within 24 to 48 hours of arrest depending on the charge, on pretrial detention or conditions.

Berlin said sometimes prosecutors have limited information when they have to make the decision to pursue detention.

“Perhaps a legislative fix or internal remedy could improve this outcome. Perhaps both,” Berlin said.

He noted the monitoring device immediately notified authorities that Elguezabal had violated the conditions of his release. But by the time police arrived just minutes later, the couple already was dead.

“In cases such as these, time is of the essence, both before and after the crime. I believe it is time to revisit the current law and take time out of the equation,” Berlin said.

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