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State

Man accused of killing 5 in Illinois takes stand

PEORIA – A man accused of killing five members of a central Illinois family with a tire iron wiped away tears as he painted a horrifying picture of the murder scene to jurors.

But Christopher Harris said during testimony Friday it was one of the children who slaughtered the family in 2009.

The 34-year-old is charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Rick and Ruth Gee, and their children. They were family to Harris’ ex-wife, Nicole Gee.

Harris testified he went to their Beason home at 1 a.m. to buy marijuana, perplexed no one responded.

He claimed he came across family members dead or dying, and blood splattered “everywhere.”

Harris said 14-year-old Dillen Constant lunged at him and the boy killed the family. Harris said he killed Constant in self-defense.

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