Man charged in wife's 1973 Barrington Township murder out of jail

  • Courtesy of Fort Bend CountyDonnie Rudd, 74, is free on bond after posting 10 percent of his $4 million bail.

    Courtesy of Fort Bend CountyDonnie Rudd, 74, is free on bond after posting 10 percent of his $4 million bail.

Updated 10/6/2016 9:35 AM

Donnie Rudd, charged with murder last year in the 1973 death of his wife in Barrington Township, is out of the Cook County Jail after posting 10 percent of his $4 million bail.

Rudd, 74, had been in custody since December, when authorities arrested him on allegations he killed his 19-year-old wife, Noreen Kumeta Rudd, then staged a car crash to cover up the murder.


His attorney, Timothy Grace, said Thursday that Rudd went free after posting bond about three weeks ago. He declined to say where Rudd is living now.

"We believe he's innocent and we're looking forward to his trial and showing everyone he's innocent," Grace said.

A trial date has not yet been set, he added.

Authorities say Rudd killed his wife to collect on life insurance policies worth $120,000. She was found dead in September 1973, less than a month after their marriage, after what seemed to be a crash near Dundee and Bateman roads in Barrington Township.

Rudd, a former attorney, told police another vehicle forced their car off the road and it struck a barbed wire fence. He claimed Noreen, who worked with him at Quaker Oats in Barrington, had been thrown from the vehicle.

No autopsy was done, but authorities exhumed Noreen's body in 2013, and following an autopsy her death was ruled homicide caused by blunt force trauma, authorities say.

Rudd, who was disbarred in 1994 in Illinois for engaging in unlawful, dishonest and fraudulent conduct, is also a suspect in the 1991 unsolved murder of Arlington Heights interior designer Loretta Tabak-Bodtke, authorities said. He has not been charged in that case, but Arlington Heights police said he remains a suspect.

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