GRAPHIC: Man charged with beating blind man in wheelchair to death
GRANITE CITY, Ill. (KMOV/Gray News) – A blind man who used a wheelchair was beaten to death inside an Illinois home over the weekend, according to investigators.
Police said around 4:30 a.m. Sunday, 30-year-old Blake Streeb attacked two people inside a home in Granite City.
One of the victims, identified as 25-year-old Michael Reay, later died from his injuries. The second victim was hurt, but officials did not clarify the extent of injuries.
Streeb was arrested on the scene.
According to Reay’s uncle, Gary Reay, an accident as a teenager left Michael Reay blind and in a wheelchair. The family said he was defenseless when he was brutally attacked Sunday.
“Our understanding is (Streeb) showed up to the place and he beat Michael to a pulp, clearly from the picture here. He was beat beyond recognition and stomped,” Gary Reay said.
Photos from the hospital show Michael Reay on life support and with facial injuries beyond recognition.
The family said Michael Reay was visiting a friend the night of the attack. The family said they do not know Streeb.
Investigators with the Madison County Sheriff’s Department said this was not a random attack, although they are not yet sharing further information on a motive.
Investigators said Streeb lived nearby and was an acquaintance of the people who live in the house where the attack happened. The other victim who was injured lived at the home.
Capt. Brian Koberna said investigators believe Streeb was intoxicated at the time of the attack. The second victim was able to get away and call 911.
Investigators said they have responded to that house in the past for disturbance calls.
Michael Reay was taken to the hospital where he died from his injuries. His family said some of his organs were donated.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help the Reay family with funeral expenses.
Streeb remains behind bars, facing first-degree murder and battery charges. His bond was set at $1 million.
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