Man gets 45 years in prison for gunning down his uncle

September 10

JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow announced Thursday that a Morris man who shot and killed his 49-year-old uncle in September 2009 has been sentenced to 45 years in prison.

Jason M. Gonzalez, 29, used a 9 mm handgun to shoot his uncle, Lance Goebel, roughly a dozen times at Goebel’s Manhattan Township home on Sept. 17, 2009. The victim’s wife found his body sprawled on the living room floor.

Prosecutors say Gonzalez also stole roughly $1,000 as well as Goebel’s vehicle on the day of the murder. The defendant and his uncle had been arguing about money.  Gonzalez, who had been living with Goebel and his family, had become upset because his uncle kicked him out of his house shortly before the murder.

Those testifying against Gonzalez at the trial included the defendant’s mother, who assisted Will County Sheriff’s detectives in taking a statement from her son after the murder. 

Gonzalez represented himself for two weeks during a jury trial before halting proceedings abruptly on June 19 to plead guilty to first-degree murder.

“Jason Gonzalez is a ruthless killer who returned the many acts of kindness his uncle had extended by gunning him down in cold blood,” said State’s Attorney Glasgow. “The defendant has a complete disregard for human life. Our community will be safer while he is in prison.”

Glasgow credited Assistant State’s Attorneys Fred Harvey, Chrstine Vukmir and Colleen Griffin with securing the plea and sentence that places this dangerous criminal behind bars. He also praised the Will County Sheriff’s detectives for an investigation that enabled prosecutors to put the defendant behind bars.