Pair accused in carjacking, sexual assault make first court appearance

Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 3:12 PM CST
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QUINCY (WGEM) - The two people charged in the reported carjacking, robbery and sexual assault of a 70-year-old Adams County woman made their first appearance in the case on Tuesday in Adams County Court.

Bradley Yohn, 34, of Springfield, Illinois, faces two counts of home invasion, one count of aggravated kidnapping, one count of aggravated vehicular hijacking, one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault, all Class X felonies, and residential burglary, a Class 1 felony. Those charges are in connection with a Nov. 9 incident that allegedly began along the North Bottom Road.

While Brenner read the charge of criminal sexual assault to Yohn on Tuesday afternoon, Yohn claimed he was not responsible.

“You have the wrong person, your honor,” Yohn said, apparently sobbing behind his mask.

He also faces felony charges in two other cases. He was charged with vehicular hijacking stemming from an Oct. 31 incident.

He faces new charges of residential burglary, a Class 1 felony; two counts of theft or unauthorized control of property over $500 but under $10,000, Class 3 felonies; and criminal sexual abuse, a Class 4 felony. Those charges stem from an Oct. 14 incident.

Judge Tad Brenner raised the bond for Yohn in Oct. 31 and Nov. 9 cases at the request of Adams County Assistant State’s Attorney Laura Keck.

For Oct. 31 case, Brenner raised the bond, which initially had been set at $250,000, to $500,000. And in the Nov. 9 case, Brenner raised the initial $10 million bond to $15 million, based on what he called a “striking criminal history.”

Brenner said Yohn has convictions in Adams, Pike, Morgan, Sangamon, Scott and Hancock counties in Illinois, as well as in Marion and Audrain counties in Missouri. He pointed out pending charges in Marion and St. Charles counties in Missouri. And, he said Yohn was found to be in possession of items belonging to the alleged victim.

Perhaps most striking was the revelation Yohn had been arrested Oct. 19 in St. Charles County on charges of illegal possession of a firearm by a felon, with a cash-only bond of $50,000. However, officials there inexplicably released Yohn without posting the bond, and charges were refiled the next day.

After the hearing, Keck said the bond was the largest she had ever seen in Adams County.

In the third case, Brenner set bond at $300,000.

In the event Yohn is able to post 10% bond, Brenner ordered that he be subject to GPS monitoring, report daily to the Adams County probation office and have no contact with any of the alleged victims.

Public Defender Todd Nelson was appointed to represent Yohn, who is to make his next appearance in the case at 9 a.m. Monday morning.

Before he was led from the courtroom, Yohn slumped onto a bench and made a statement toward Brenner.

“Kill me now, your honor,” he said. “Take my life now, please.”

Karen Blackledge, 32, of Quincy, also faces two counts of home invasion, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated vehicular hijacking, residential burglary and aggravated criminal sexual assault.

She stood through the hearing, shaking her head and acknowledging to Brenner through tears that she understood the charges against her as they were read to the court.

Brenner left unchanged the initial $5 million bond that had been set for Blackledge. In the event she is able to post 10% bond, Brenner ordered that she be subject to GPS monitoring, report daily to the Adams County probation office and have no contact with any of the alleged victims.

Assistant Public Defender Christopher Pratt was appointed to represent Blackledge, and she is set to appear again Monday morning in Adams County Court.

Yohn and Blackledge were taken into custody last Wednesday in Springfield and on Monday were brought back to Adams County.

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