The Mount Vernon woman whose burned remains were found in Carbondale died from strangulation after she was struck in the head with a hammer, according to information filed in Jackson County Court.
Lauren L. Stinde, 23, of Carbondale, is accused of murdering Robin L. Stief in August and attempting to conceal her death by hiding her body in a metal trash can. Her arrest and three felony charges were announced Monday by the Jackson County State’s Attorney. If convicted on a charge of first degree murder, she faces a penalty of 20 to 60 years’ imprisonment.
Stinde allegedly hit Stief in the head with a hammer, and then strangled and suffocated her, according to information filed in the court by the state’s attorney. Her bond has been set at $1 million. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Nov. 17.
Stief’s body was discovered Aug. 30 when firefighters responded to reports of something burning near Piles Fork Creek in Carbondale. After extinguishing the flames, they found the remains of a woman later identified as Stief.
Family members filed a missing persons report for Stief in Mount Vernon on Aug. 25, five days before the body was found.
Information regarding the cause of death of comes after a two-month investigation led by Carbondale police. Two apparent accomplices were arrested in October with ties to the case.
Robert Dennis, 25, of Carbondale, and Tiesha Anderson, 22, of Collinsville, each face a single charge of concealing the homicidal death of Stief, according to court documents. They are due in court Nov. 3.
The circumstances surrounding the death remain unclear. Police have released no information pertaining to a motive.
Campus editor Bill Lukitsch can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @lukitsbill.
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