Murrayville Man Pleads Not Guilty to Battery of a Child Charge

By Benjamin Cox on March 31, 2021 at 11:37am

A Murrayville man who turned himself in to police after an Illinois State Police investigation into child abuse has his trial set in Morgan County for June.

31-year-old Joseph E. Wardell of Murrayville turned himself into Morgan County authorities and was booked on a Class 3 Felony Aggravated Battery of a Child charge at 10:38 AM on February 26th. According to the Illinois State Police, On October 20, 2020, the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigations Zone 4 was requested by the Children’s Advocacy Center of Morgan County to investigate the alleged battery of a two-month-old infant.

The Morgan County State’s Attorney’s Office added reckless conduct and obstruction of justice charges on Monday, according to court documents.

According to further court documents, Wardell is alleged to have caused an injury to the leg of a child under the age of 13, and acting “in a reckless manner, he caused a right oblique femur fracture” to the child, and relayed false information as to how the child was injured.

Wardell waived a preliminary hearing and entered a not guilty plea. A pretrial conference was set for June 2nd, with trial set for June 8th.