School Bus Driver Receives 76-Year Sentence in 2010 Murder-for-Hire Case


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OTTAWA, Ill. — Christian Shepherd, a former school bus driver, was sentenced to 76 years in prison on Tuesday by Circuit Judge David Carlson, following his conviction for Solicitation of Murder for Hire and Solicitation of Murder. 

The charges stemmed from a shocking case dating back to 2010. Shepherd was found guilty in the case last November.

While already in custody for criminal sexual assault, Shepherd attempted to hire an inmate to murder his assault victim, the victim’s mother, and two detectives involved in the case. However, both inmates Shepherd approached chose to cooperate with the police, leading to his downfall.

During the trial, recordings were played, revealing Shepherd’s detailed plans for the murders, which also included eliminating the first hitman. 

Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow described Shepherd as a “soulless predator” who endangered the lives of five people to evade justice for his own crimes.

Shepherd, now 44, will serve approximately 65 years in prison after receiving credit for the 4.625 days already served. In addition, he will face three years of mandatory supervised release.

The successful prosecution was attributed to the dedication of Assistant State’s Attorneys Christine Vukmir and Colleen Griffin, Victim Witness Advocate Kelly Sullivan, IT Specialist Albert Bailey, and the detectives from the Will County Sheriff’s Department. Their efforts ensured justice for the victims and the community.


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