Civil lawsuit filed against Robert Heitbrink

By Gary Scott on July 20, 2015 at 8:00pm

A trial for a Jacksonville man accused of killing his step-father-in-law hasn’t even taken place, but already, there’s a civil suit that’s been filed in connection to the case.

A wrongful death lawsuit was filed this week in Morgan County Court by Connie McElhaney, the widow of 70-year-old William McElhaney, against Rob Heitbrink, a former real estate agent.

Most of the action in the two years since has been continuances to allow for the evidence process to move forward. Barring any further delays, Heitbrink could go to trial in the fall.

Connie McElhaney filed the wrongful death suit a week after becoming special administrator of the McElhaney estate. The suit demands a sum of more than $50-thousand for effects caused by the death of McElhaney, which prosecutors say was the result of Heitbrink stabbing him in Heitbrink’s west-side city residence.

As has been previously reported, the McElhaneys were visiting the Heitbrinks as the parents of Shelley Heitbrink, who is now the ex-wife of Robert.

The three-count lawsuit, which only represents one side of the case, says the incident, which happened on July 26th, 2013, has caused “mental suffering” and “great losses” for the McElhaney family.

Connie McElhaney is represented by McDevitt, Osteen, Chojnicki and Deters LLC of Effingham.