Husband of slain Illinois family arrested

Chris and Sheri Coleman are shown with their two boys, Garret and Gavin.
Police arrested a southwestern Illinois man in connection with the slayings of his 31-year-old wife and their two young sons.

Chris Coleman was arrested Tuesday at his parents’ home. He is being held without bond at a local jail. Police said Tuesday that they do not have a motive for the killings. Police found the bodies of Sheri Coleman and the children, Garret, 11, and Gavin, 9, in the bedrooms of their two-floor home in the St. Louis suburb of Columbia, Illinois, on the morning of May 7. Indications were they had been strangled. Coleman told police he left the house at 5:43 a.m., and drove to a gym to work out. “Shortly thereafter, he started calling his house, realized that nobody was answering and on his way back at around 6:50 a.m. is when he made the phone call to the Columbia Police Department,” said Maj. Jeff Connor of the Major Case Squad. Connor said Coleman told police he started calling his house shortly after leaving it because he “was making sure the kids were getting up for school.”

Connor said threatening messages were found on the walls inside the home, but he would not disclose the exact wording. Earlier this month, police said they had an idea who committed the slayings, but they were waiting on prosecutors to build a strong forensic case.