Murder suspect moves from IDOC to sheriff’s custody

Local News

SHELBY COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — A murder suspect was released from the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC), but is in the custody of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO). The release of 25-year old Deven Barger is a formality, on paper only.

Barger was transferred from IDOC to SCSO Monday. He faces 3 charges of first degree murder and 3 charges of intentional homicide of an unborn child; all of which are class M felonies.

In July, police say Barger shot 22-year old Samantha Cushing in the face with a shotgun, then led law enforcement on a cross-county chase with their 3-year old daughter in the car. Barger is being held on $5 million bond. He’s scheduled to appear in court for a pre-trial hearing in June.

According to IDOC records, Barger’s criminal history goes back to 2012. He served time for aiding/abetting/possessing/selling a stolen vehicle in three different counties (Shelby, McLean & Macon), between November 2012 and April 2013.

In March 2017, Barger was charged with multiple felony counts in Christian County for being a felon in possession/use weapon/firearm and aggravated fleeing police. In June of that year, he pleaded guilty to aggravated battery of a police officer in Shelby County and was sentenced to 3-and-a-half years for those crimes to run concurrently with the charges in Christian County.

He was released from custody in December 2018. Seven months later, Cushing and her unborn child were dead. It’s believed Barger was being sought on a parole violation during that time, but it’s unclear what that violation was.

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