A Colorado man charged with murder for fatally shooting a northwest suburban man over two years ago in West Dundee has been found guilty.
Gary M. Bennett, 38, of Denver was convicted by a jury Tuesday of first-degree murder and concealing a homicidal death for shooting Keith K. Crawford, 36, of Bartlett, on Aug. 10, 2014, according to the Kane County state’s attorney’s office.
The jury found that Bennett fired the gun that killed Crawford to avoid paying a debt he owed for drugs, prosecutors said.
On the night of the shooting, Bennett and co-defendant Joan Sebastian Vado-Bonilla, 29, of West Dundee, drove to a party in unincorporated Dundee Township, prosecutors said. Bennett then convinced Crawford to take a drive with them to a location near Valley View, so Bennett could partially repay him and purchase more cocaine.
As Vado-Bonilla drove, Bennett pulled a gun in a rear seat of the vehicle and shot Crawford, who was riding in the front passenger seat, in the back of his head, the statement said. Crawford’s body was dumped in a garbage bin at an apartment complex on Todd Farm Road in Elgin, and was never found.
The case went unsolved for nearly a year before Vado-Bonilla agreed to cooperate with investigators, prosecutors said. He pleaded guilty in December 2015 to a felony count of concealment of a homicidal death and currently awaits sentencing.
Bennett, who formerly lived in Algonquin, remains at the Kane County Jail, where he has been held since he was extradited from Colorado.