Tuesday September 9, 2014 marks the 40th anniversary of the unsolved murder of 16-year-old Mary Ann Becker of Atkinson, IL. Henry County Crime Stoppers is today announcing a
new reward of $15,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in this case. This is in addition to the normal reward of up to $1000 for information leading to an arrest. Despite all law enforcement efforts, including a multi-agency task force formed at the time it happened, this case remains unsolved.
Mary Ann Becker was found dead inside her home on the evening of Monday, September 9, 1974. The crime stunned the quiet town of Atkinson, IL. Mary Ann Becker, who was described as a shy, quiet, and intelligent high school honors student, was buried on Thursday, Sept 12, 1974.
The Illinois State Police, in cooperation with several local and county agencies, is actively investigating Mary Ann’s murder, and anyone with information regarding this case is asked to call Henry County Crime Stoppers at 800-227-2324. All calls to Crime Stoppers are confidential. Information on this case can also be viewed on the Illinois State Police website available at http://www.isp.state.il.us under “Crime – Unsolved Crimes.” Mary Ann Becker is the oldest case, listed at the bottom of the page.
UPDATE (September 6, 2017): After an extensive period of renewed investigations and interviews by the Illinois State Police that included some findings previously unknown, and a review of the evidence by Henry County States Attorney Matthew Schutte, officials have reached a conclusion that enough circumstantial evidence exits to send this case to a Grand Jury for charges on Robert G Clark, a former neighbor of the Beckers and co-worker of Mary Ann’s father at the Victoria, IL coal mines. Mr. Clark was found dead in Bloomington, Indiana on March 16, 2015. The $15,000 additional reward has been withdrawn, although the case technically remains open and tips will be accepted on our tipsline and will be subject to our normal review process.