EUREKA, Ill. (AP) — A 9-year-old central Illinois boy believed to have set a fire that led to the deaths of five family members has been arraigned on first-degree murder charges.

The Journal Star in Peoria reports Woodford County Circuit Court Judge Charles Feeney on Monday read a juvenile petition citing the murder charges, along with arson counts.

Feeney explained the juvenile counts and legal processes to the boy, who at times indicated he did not understand. The boy appeared to sob before being taken out of the courtroom by his paternal grandparents.

Feeney appointed a public defender for the boy.

The April 6 fire killed a 1-year-old, two 2-year-olds, a 34-year-old man and a 69-year-old woman at a mobile home park about 150 miles (240 kilometers) southwest of Chicago.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.