The cold case of Eric Dennis Beasley

The cold case of Eric Dennis Beasley is hard to solve. All the witnesses said the same thing: they heard several shots but nobody saw the actually shooting that took place on Dec 21, 1986, in Champaign, Illinois. The autopsy revealed that Eric was shot six times. The fatal bullet entered through his hip and moved up to his heart. The first bullet to hit him in the throat. The impact of this shot spun him around and made him collapse on his knees. He eventually fell down with his face in his own blood. That was how he was found. He was 35 years old.

Eric’s case is an uphill battle. Vital information is missing and his case has no web presence. The sad part is that it is very likely that Eric had a child in Chicago. Some people mentioned that he traveled to Chicago quite a bit, in part, to see this child. Since there is no information online this is hard to check.

Champaign County Crime Stoppers doesn’t mention his case on their site and the police department doesn’t have its own cold cases page with information for the public to review. This makes it difficult to raise awareness for this unsolved homicide.

Police did receive tips and anonymous phone calls but nothing came in that led to answers. This much we do know:

  • His antimony and barium tests were insignificant. These tests would have shown if Eric himself had handled a gun lately. The swabs taken from his hands were not handled correctly. According to a FBI report, swabs must not be packed in wood, paper, or glass since these materials can add barium to the swabs.
  • Eric had a girlfriend since October 1985. He stayed with her on and off. According to her, he was abusive and she had called police on several occasions. Eric’s file doesn’t hold any further information about domestic violence report or 911 calls. Apparently three weeks before his death, he was more drug dependent than ever. The last time she spoke to him over the telephone was Thursday before his death.
  • Before Beasley was shot, he had a run in with two people over money and drugs.
  • a Colt .32 caliber automatic was handed over to police and sent to the crime lab in Springfield to see whether cartridges and bullets found at the crime scene came from this weapon. The file does not mention any results. There is no sign either that the Colt was swabbed for fingerprints.

If you have any information about this case, please contact the Champaign Police Department at 1-217-351-4545 or email them at