this is a note written by Cheryl Potts(Dustin's Mother) and it explains everything.I feel that this family deserves a retrial to put her son's murderer in prison where he belongs
Please help me!
We were let down by the investigators who didn't do their jobs properly and the States Attorneys who did put much effort in raising important issues in this case. I am trying to get the verdict overturned of at the least be pursued by the feds. I am trying to push for Federal Charges for the violation of Dustin's civil rights, so Randy Deskin can be prosecuted to the fullest extent possible, up to and including death, or at a minimum - life imprisonment!!
Hello, may name is Cheryl Potts. I am the mother of a son who was brutally murdered in rural Mason County on Aug. 28th 2009 his name was Dustin Englebrecht. My son’s fiancée (Stephanie Kearney) notified me on Fri. Aug 28th of 2009 that she didn’t know where my son was and asked if I had seen him. The following morning Sat. Aug 29th of 2009 she contacted me by phone and said my son had not came home all night. She told me she had just dropped off Randy Deskin and was on her way into Pekin to search for my son.( Randy Deskin is a suspect in another unsolved murder case in Pekin,Il and he has had numerous assaults and aggravated battery cases .) Stephanie said Randy had stayed overnight on Friday night. She said (Randy) had been there Fri morning when she left for work and was there all day with Dustin. He was also there Thurs. night. I informed her I would notify Mason county police because I knew Randy Deskin’s history, and be out to their house right after. My brother Tom Fuller and I went to Dustin’s rural home and the police had not arrived yet. Upon searching for my son on the property we observed blood splatter on various locations. We observed a fence line trampled down, weeds knocked over and a fresh pile of dirt at the edge of a bean field. I again called Mason county police to get an officer out to my son’s property. When the Deputy Keith Potts arrived to my son’s house I showed him the blood splatter, broken fence line, knocked over weeds and fresh pile of dirt. He said the blood was old blood probably from something else. Deputy Potts said the dirt pile was probably where the farmers had turned it up from planting (the bean plants were 4 foot tall and there was no vegetation growth on the dirt pile). I informed Deputy Potts my son had no running vehicle and could not go anywhere. I also let Deputy Potts know my son had not answered his phone all day and he would never leave his 9 year old son for someone else to get off the school bus. My son’s fiancée had the only running vehicle and she had taken it to work the morning of the day my son went missing. I informed him that Randy Deskin was the last person known to be left at the house with my son. I informed Deputy Potts of Randy Deskin’s criminal history including the fact he was a suspect in a murder investigation in Pekin. Deputy Keith Potts never marked the area off as a crime scene despite the blood found. He said,” Your son is 27 and can be missing if he wants to.” I knew deep in my gut something was not right. It was not like my son to just up and leave, not answer his phone, or to leave his 9 yr. old son for someone else to get from the school bus. I called family members and friends to come to help me look for my son. I called numerous police agencies (State Police, Tazewell County and F.B.I.) to get some type of help. I told them of my findings of blood splatter, upturned dirt, and the torn down fence line. On Sun. Aug. 30th of 2009 over 100 family and friends showed up on my son’s property to look for him. Again I called Mason County police to get some type of help. Deputy Potts and Detective Steve Burgett came back to my son’s house. Both officers took DNA samples but did nothing with them. It wasn’t until the afternoon of Sun. Aug. 30th of 2009 the scene was taken seriously by the police and marked off as a crime scene. And it wasn’t until my son’s fiancé claimed marijuana and money were missing too. Not one time during the entire police investigation did any officers ask family and friends who searched for Dustin any questions about what they saw, who was doing what, who searched or where they had searched? For ten days my brother Rich Fuller and I planned search parties from various locations. Hundreds of people joined in our search of three counties, with no help from police agencies. Not one time did the police investigators ask for the list of volunteer’s names who assisted in the searching. On Sept 07 of 2009 my son Dustin brutally beaten body was found in a shallow grave at the edge of the bean field, right below the pile of fresh upturned dirt we seen on the first day.
In February of 2011 Randy Deskin was charged with 3 counts of first degree murder of my son Dustin Englebrecht. The state claimed they had no DNA evidence. They would have had DNA evidence had officers Burgett and Potts done something with the samples they collected on Aug 31st of 2009. The State presented numerous letters from Deskin, written from Peoria County Jail in which Deskin admitted killing Dustin. The writing was supposed to have had a hand writing analyses. We never heard results from that. Deskin admitted in court he had in fact had written those letters. But that they couldn’t have been mailed from the jail he was housed in because of a correspondence stamp that wasn’t on it. The State never disputed that statement. I am a correctional officer at Tazewell County Jail and we never put a correspondence stamp on any outgoing mail. Eight hairs were found in my son’s hands and no tests were brought forth in court of the results. No fingerprint results were presented. I don’t even know if any were tested. The State presented a witness that heard Deskin claim ,” He should do to her (me) what he did to my son” The state did not bring up the fact that Deskin was the main suspect in a unsolved murder case in Pekin, Il or his violent criminal history. The state did not call on the stand witnesses they had subpoenaed. One was my ex-husband (Deskins cousin) who was told by Deskin , “I killed one of your kids you want me to kill another”. They did not dispute the fact Randy Deskin was wearing my son’s shoes that had blood on them 2 months after the crime. They didn’t bring forth medical records that would have proven my son did not have any injuries that would cause blood to go onto those shoes prior to his murder. The State did not call any members of Dustin’s family to the stand to dispute any of the testimony given by Deskin or any other witnesses. The jurors got to go home to read newspapers, converse with people. They were not sequestered. During the trial, jurors used the same restrooms as potential witnesses, victims and the defendant. There were no rooms for separation. It took longer for the courts to pick the jury than it did for the State to present its case
On Sept. 30th of 2011 Randy Deskin was found not guilty by a panel of 12 jurors. I feel the entire justice system let my son and our family down. From the first officer who responded to the report of my son missing , crime scene investigators, DNA experts, crime lab experts and finally States attorney’s office who did not present all the facts in prosecuting Randy Deskin. Nor did they ask critical questions when Deskin took the stand.
I feel like our family was victimized by this heinous crime, by Randy Deskin, by law enforcement and by the Justice system. My son and his family have had no voice during this entire process and a murder walked free. In our criminal justice system defendants have all kinds of appeal rights. They get to speak to the jurors and the victims are told no outbursts and not to show any emotion on which the jury could be swayed. The defendant is allowed to make gestures and show emotion to the jury and when the jurors leave the room makes faces and gestures to the victim’s family. The victims are not allowed to take the stand on behalf of their loved one or defend their loved ones character. But can be kept out of the court room because the defense subpoenaed them in a tactical defense so the jury sees no emotion from them (then never calls them to the stand). I want to know why victims do not have the same appeal rights! When all evidence is not admitted in the court proceedings, when initial investigations where not fully completed, when all witness weren’t questioned. Can you please review this case? Any help you can give me in this matter would be deeply appreciated. What would you do if this happened to your child or family member?
Cheryl C. Potts
Please Help this family to get justice