JOLIET - A Joliet man on Monday pleaded guilty instead of facing trial for the murder of his mother in 2013.
While jurors were waiting to be chosen, Shane G. Smith, entered a blind plea to one count of first-degree murder for the death of Joan M. Smith. As part of the plea agreement, Shane Smith faces up to a maximum of 35 years in prison when he is sentenced in August.
In Oct. 2013, Smith choked his mother to death during an argument at their home in the 1600 block of Black Road then threw her body in the Des Plaines River where it was discovered on October 17.
According to prosecutors, frequent arguments between Joan Smith and Shane Smith's wife led Joan Smith to ban her son's wife from their house. After Shane and his wife had spent a day fishing and drinking together, the couple returned to Joan Smith's house, which caused her to evict her son as well.
Shane Smith strangled his mother, placed her body in a plastic bag and drove back to the locks where he'd been fishing, prosecutors said.
"This resolution will spare the family the ordeal of going through the trial and hopefully start to bring some closure for them," defense attorney Michael Renzi said Monday.