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Thrailkill might argue self-defense in NIU shooting

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT
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Chaz Thrailkill was charged with murder in the November 2011 slaying of Northern Illinois University student Steven Agee.

SYCAMORE – A 21-year-old Markham man accused of killing a Northern Illinois University student in November 2011 might argue he was justifiably defending someone.

An attorney for Chaz Thrailkill filed paperwork this week indicating he might argue Thrailkill acted in his own defense or someone else’s when he shot Steven Agee II about 2 a.m. Nov. 23, 2011. Defense attorney Kenneth Johnson does not have to use that argument during trial, which is scheduled to begin Dec. 9 in DeKalb County court, but filing the paperwork gives him the option, DeKalb County Assistant State’s Attorney Phil Montgomery said.

Johnson did not return calls seeking comment.

Thrailkill was charged with murder, aggravated battery and aggravated discharge of a firearm for allegedly shooting Agee, 22, of Park Forest, after an argument broke out at an off-campus party in an apartment at 809 Edgebrook Drive. Agee, a senior studying sociology, was shot multiple times in the chest; he was later pronounced dead at Kishwaukee Hospital, police said.

Police said Thrailkill was not an NIU student but was in the area visiting a friend.

Thrailkill is being held in DeKalb County Jail in lieu of $3 million bond. He is next due in court Sept. 30.

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