CLAY COUNTY, IL — A 30-year-old Edgewood man charged in Clay County Court with first-degree murder was charged Tuesday with escape. Walter West has been held in the Clay County Jail on $2.5 million bond since his arrest in October for the September death of 80-year-old Roger Courson during a botched burglary of his rural Edgewood home.
West is one of three men accused of Courson’s death — 27-year-old Christopher Gallatin of Centralia, and 39-year-old Jamie Charlton, of Salem, are also charged with murder and residential burglary in connection with the case. On Thursday, Clay County authorities reported an inmate had escaped following a visiting hour. He was quickly captured after being found hiding along the Little Wabash River. On Tuesday West was charged with Class 2 felony escape from a penal institution.
He’s scheduled to appear in court Wednesday on the murder and burglary charges.