Quincy woman charged with killing four in August 2020 agrees to plea; sentencing set for Aug. 10

McBride 07242023

Natasha McBride, seated at right, listens to Judge Tad Brenner during a hearing Monday morning in Adams County Circuit Court. Seated at left is Public Defender Todd Nelson. Standing behind them are bailiffs Chad Downs and Jennifer Unmisig. | Pool photo/David Adam, MRN

QUINCY — A Quincy woman facing four counts of first-degree murder after a 2020 accident has agreed to a plea.

Natasha McBride, 39, appeared Monday morning in Adams County Circuit Court with her attorney, Public Defender Todd Nelson, before Judge Tad Brenner. A three-day bench trial was scheduled to begin Monday morning.

However, when Brenner asked if both sides were ready to proceed with the bench trial, Assistant State’s Attorney Josh Jones said he and Nelson had been in negotiation for a plea. Jones asked for the bench trial to be continued but also asked for a plea and sentencing to be scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Aug. 10.

McBride chose on Jan. 31 to have a bench trial instead of a jury trial. Brenner set the dates for the bench trial to be May 1-3. Nelson filed a motion on March 3 to continue the case, which was pushed back to July 31 and Aug. 1-2. The trial then was reset on March 22 to be held July 24-26.

McBride allegedly ran a traffic light at Fourth and Broadway while speeding on Aug. 14, 2020. She drove her vehicle into another vehicle driven by Jenniffer Hendricks, 54, of Rushville. Hendricks and three grandchildren — Dakota Corrick, 6, Archer Corrick, 4, and Ransom Corrick, 21 months, all of Kirksville, Mo. — were killed.

The state charged McBride on Aug. 17, 2020, with four counts of reckless homicide, four counts of driving on a revoked license and four courts of leaving the scene of a personal injury accident. The state charged McBride on Aug. 20, 2020, in an indictment with those same offenses, plus four counts of first-degree murder.

The Quincy Police Department said in its crash report McBride admitted to smoking marijuana shortly before leaving in her vehicle. She reportedly admitted to police that she was driving “really, really fast” and using a cellphone at the time of the crash.

The state’s attorney’s office made a motion on Dec. 29, 2021, to extend the discovery deadline. Before the court heard that motion, the state charged McBride on Jan. 11, 2022, with aggravated DUI in a 17th count, alleging McBride operated her vehicle “while under the influence of tetrahydrocannabinol” and two or more people died in the collision. The discovery deadline was extended to Jan. 14, 2022.

Nelson made a motion on March 15, 2022, to dismiss the 17th count on speedy-trial grounds. He claimed that count was subject to compulsory rejoinder — a rule requiring a prosecutor, in a single action, to bring all known charges against a defendant arising from a single criminal episode — with the original charges filed against McBride in August 2020. McBride had been in custody for more than 500 days by the time the state filed the 17th count.

Judge Amy Lannerd granted Nelson’s motion on April 1. The Fourth District Appellate Court then upheld Lannerd’s ruling on Dec. 6.

McBride remains in the Adams County Jail on $5 million bond.

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