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Trial Date Set For Alleged Gunman In Wilmette Murder

Benjamin Schenk (Credit: Lake County Sheriff)

Benjamin Schenk (Credit: Lake County Sheriff)

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WAUKEGAN, Ill. (STMW) – A jury trial has been scheduled for March 31 for the suspected triggerman in the drug-related murder of 20-year-old Highland Park resident Colin Nutter.

The trial date was scheduled during a hearing Thursday morning for Benjamin Schenk, 20 of Highwood, who faces charges of first-degree murder, armed robbery with a firearm and concealing a firearm in the death of Nutter, whose body was found near the Edens Expressway June 3.

Schenk faces 45 years to life in prison if convicted.

Officials allege Schenk, Philip Vatamaniuc, 17, and Michael Coffee, 17, both of Highland Park, arranged a marijuana deal with Nutter the morning of June 3.

The meeting took place in Nutter’s car, where he was shot, according to police. He died of a gunshot wound to the head.

Nutter’s body was taken from the driver’s seat and placed in the trunk before it was left by the highway, authorities said.

A jogger found Nutter’s body lying in brush near the Edens Expressway on the east side of Frontage Road, just south of the intersection of Old Glenview Road and Briar Drive in Wilmette.

Vatamaniuc and Coffee, also both charged with murder, gave police statements implicating Schenck as the shooter.

A pretrial date of Dec. 17 was also scheduled for Schenk during the Nov. 7 hearing.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2013. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)