2017 Schaumburg murder case inches closer to conclusion
The case of a Schaumburg man charged with sexually assaulting and strangling a female neighbor nearly two years ago inched toward a possible conclusion Thursday after attorneys for Bulmaro Mejia-Maya requested a conference with Cook County Judge Steven Goebel that could lead to a guilty plea.
During the private conference, defense attorneys and prosecutors tell the judge details about the case and the defendant's past and character that the judge would learn if the case proceeded to trial. At the conclusion, the judge makes a sentencing offer based on the defendant's guilty plea. A defendant either accepts the judge's offer and pleads guilty or rejects the offer and proceeds to trial.
Neither side disclosed the results of Mejia-Maya's conference, but Assistant Cook County Public Defender Caroline Glennon informed the court her client wants to talk with his family before his next hearing March 18.
Authorities say Mejia-Maya, 31, lived with five unrelated men in an apartment about 50 feet away from the one occupied by 33-year-old Tiffany Thrasher, a dog-loving, Chicago Cubs fan who lived with her niece. They say Mejia-Maya entered Thrasher's home through a window on April 15, 2017, and encountered her in a bathroom. After Thrasher threatened to call police, prosecutors say, Mejia-Maya punched, sexually assaulted and strangled her.
Officers found Thrasher about 11:45 a.m. the next day, which was Easter, after fellow parishioners at Living Hope Church in Elk Grove Village became concerned because she missed services.
Police located Mejia-Maya at his uncle's house in Jacksonville, Florida, several days later.