Man fatally beat 71-year-old retired attorney in Evanston: prosecutors

Cory Gilmartin faces six counts of first-degree murder in the death of Daniel Murray, police say.

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A woman was shot to death May 11, 2022, in Gresham.

Cory Gilmartin, 34, is charged with the murder of Daniel Murray, 71, on Dec. 9, 2020.

Sun-Times file photo

An Indiana man has been charged with first-degree murder after the 71-year-old retired attorney he allegedly punched and stomped on at an Evanston clinic died late last month.

Cook County prosecutors didn’t say what prompted Cory Gilmartin to beat Daniel Murray in the back hallway of a NorthShore Immediate Care, at 524 Main St.

But they did say Gilmartin, 34, remained at the scene of the crime, made several “nonsensical statements” and admitted to striking Murray, who had Parkinson’s disease and was using a walker at the time of the Nov. 10 attack.

Responding officers arrived at the clinic at 7 p.m. that night and found Gilmartin in a corridor, prosecutors said. When asked for identification, Gilmartin allegedly said it was in a book around the corner. As the officers followed Gilmartin, they found an unresponsive Murray lying face down on the ground with blood coming out of his ears, prosecutors said.

Cory Gilmartin

Cory Gilmartin

Cook County sheriff’s office

Gilmartin and Murray did not know each other, authorities said.

Gilmartin told investigators that he first punched Murray, knocking him to the ground, prosecutors said. He then allegedly said he punched Murray three more times in the back of his head.

Surveillance video inside the clinic didn’t capture the initial assault but shows Gilmartin stomping on Murray more than eight times when he was on the ground, prosecutors said.

Murray’s wife went to look for him when he didn’t come home. She eventually identified him as paramedics placed him in an ambulance and transported him to St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, prosecutors said.

Murray was in a coma until he died on Nov. 27, according to Evanston police.

He died from blunt force trauma, and his death was ruled a homicide by the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Murray served in the U.S. attorney’s office from 1978 to 1991, prosecutors said.

Gilmartin was initially charged with aggravated battery. The charges were upgraded to attempted first-degree murder on Nov. 25 and were upgraded again to first-degree murder when Murray died.

Gilmartin, of Mishawaka, Indiana, was ordered held without bail at Cook County Jail.

Gilmartin was sentenced to a year in prison for a 2013 residential entry and stalking conviction in Indiana.

He missed his arraignment hearing Tuesday because he was in isolation at the jail, but he is expected back in court on Dec. 18, according to the state’s attorney’s office.

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