By Jim Hagerty
WHEATON — A Rockford couple are jailed in DuPage County after being charged with murder in the death of a Naperville man.
Ernest Collins, 22, and his girlfriend, 21-year-old Cassandra Green, are charged in the shooting death of Michael Armendariz, 20. Armendariz went missing in Jan. 2018. His body was found May 31, 2018, in a trash can.
Also charged is Collins’ mother, 38-year-old Candice Jones, of Chicago.
On Jan. 18, 2018, Naperville Police officers responded to a report that Armendariz was missing. Police say Armendariz received an electronic message from Green and later got into an SUV she was driving. It is believed Collins emerged from the back of the vehicle a few minutes later and shot him twice in the head.
It is further alleged that Collins and Green drove the body to Jones’ home and with her help placed it in a garbage can. The can was later moved to a vacant house next door to Jones’ garage. The body was discovered several months later when neighbors reported a foul smell coming from the property.
Collins and Green were arrested last Monday in Rockford. Green, a former Rockford resident, was taken into custody Wednesday, Feb. 6, in Chicago. Green and Collins are also accused of burglarizing Armendariz’s apartment after he’d been killed.
“I would like to commend the Naperville Police Department’s Investigations Division, the Chicago Police Department, the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office and the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office for all of the hard work that went into this case, ultimately leading to justice for Michael and hopefully bringing some closure to his family,” Naperville Police Chief Robert Marshall said in the news release.
The three suspects made initial court appearances Saturday. R.