Curtis Brownell denied parole in 1977 murder of 17-year-old Louise Betts

Curtis Brownell
Curtis Brownell

Online Staff Report

Curtis Brownell, 59, convicted of the 1977 murder of 17-year-old Louise Betts and serving a sentence of 100 to 300 years in prison, has been denied parole by the Illinois Prisoner Review Board (PRB).

Brownell has been denied parole more than a dozen times since he first began serving his sentence in 1978. The PRB also recommended unanimously that his next parole hearing be set out for the maximum five-year period.

Brownell kidnapped Betts while she was trying to hitch a ride home in September 1977. After picking her up, Brownell murdered Betts, whose body wasn’t found until several months later in a rural Boone County field.

Before police found Betts’ body and arrested Brownell, he also tried to kill another Winnebago County woman. She was seven months pregnant when Brownell abducted her from a Rockford Laundromat, sexually assaulted her, and left her for dead. She and her baby survived the ordeal.

Posted March 27, 2014

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