A 26-year-old Chicago man has been charged with first-degree murder and criminal sexual assault in the death of Naperville Central High School graduate Ruth George.
Donald Thurman was taken into custody early Sunday morning in connection with the strangulation death of the 19-year-old University of Illinois at Chicago student.
UIC police say Thurman was seen on surveillance video walking behind George early Saturday morning as she entered a parking garage at UIC. Her body was later found in the backseat of a car owned by her family.
Police say Thurman confessed to the murder Sunday afternoon.
According to court records, Thurman is currently out on parole after serving two years of a six-year sentence for a 2016 armed robbery.
George was an honors student and a kinesiology major in her sophomore year at UIC. She graduated from Naperville Central in 2018.
Naperville Community Unit School District 203 remembered George today, saying in a statement that they “are saddened to hear of the untimely passing of former student Ruth George. Our thoughts remain with her family and friends during this difficult time.”
Her former gymnastics coach, Christina Tardy, added in a statement, “Ruth was such a sweet girl and had the biggest and brightest smile. We loved having her as a member of the NCHS gymnastics team and she was so fun to watch compete, especially on the floor exercise. She was a great teammate and we are going to miss her dearly.”
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