Woman who pleaded guilty to attempted murder, arson wants to withdraw guilty plea

Updated 2/14/2019 12:42 PM
  • Chevaz Odio

    Chevaz Odio

A former Elgin woman was sentenced to 28 years in prison Thursday after pleading guilty last month to attempted murder and aggravated arson for stabbing and trying to suffocate a woman and then setting her former boyfriend's Roselle townhouse on fire in July 2017.

Prior to being sentenced, however, Chevaz Odio, 30, told DuPage County Judge George Bakalis she wants to withdraw her guilty plea.

Bakalis proceeded with the sentencing but set a March 21 date to hear her motion to withdraw the plea, should her attorney file it.

Assistant Public Defender Kyle Rubeck said he would discuss Odio's decision with her privately and decide how to proceed.

Assistant State's Attorney Alyssa Rabulinski said if Odio withdraws her plea, prosecutors will reinstate an additional charge of solicitation of murder.

Prosecutors said Odio went to her ex-boyfriend's home on the 600 block of Circle Drive about 2 a.m. on July 25, 2017, and began removing items from the townhouse. The ex-boyfriend was not home at the time, but a woman who was visiting and sleeping on the couch saw Odio and confronted her.

Odio stabbed the 20-year-old woman six or seven times with a sharp object and tried to suffocate her with a plastic bag. The woman managed to run away and lock herself in an upstairs bedroom, where she began to smell gasoline and smoke.

A man who was sleeping upstairs also smelled gas and smoke, and the two jumped out a second-floor window to escape. The woman dislocated her shoulder in the fall, while the man suffered minor injuries.

Prosecutors believe Odio set fire to the townhouse and then fled by stealing a silver sedan that was parked outside, knocking over a motorcycle in the process.

Outside court, Odio's godmother, Vanessa Giles, said Odio decided to withdraw her plea because she was "set up."

"She was set up by her ex-boyfriend because he owed money on that townhouse and her family is going to stand behind her," Giles said. "She needs to fight. We don't believe that she did that. That is not her character to do something like that."

Court records show Odio previously was charged with domestic battery against her ex-boyfriend on April 7, 2017, when, authorities said, she forced her way into his townhouse and scratched his arm, causing a small abrasion.

She has been held on $2 million bail since her July 2017 arrest. Should she accept the sentence, Odio will serve 85 percent of the time before being eligible for parole.

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