A 24 year old St. Peter man made his first appearance in Fayette County Court today, and was officially charged with 1st Degree Murder in connection with the shooting death of Joshua K. Smith on Friday. Alexander R. Beccue appeared in front of Judge Don Sheafor this morning. The matter was a quick hearing, although delayed by a possible health issue from Beccue. During Judge Sheafor’s reading of the 4th charge against him, Beccue slumped in his chair to the right. Judge Sheafor commented that it appeared Beccue may have fainted and 2 deputies came to help Beccue at this time. When asked if he was OK, Beccue told Judge Sheafor he was “seeing dots.” The County’s nurse was called up from the jail and checked on Beccue during a delay in court. About 10 minutes later, Beccue returned and said he was good to continue when asked by Judge Sheafor. Beccue said he believe it was just an anxiety attack. Judge Sheafor added the county nurse said that Beccue was suffering from elevated blood pressure, but was better after the short break.
Beccue is charged with 2 counts of First Degree Murder, one count of Possession of a Stolen Vehicle and one count of Unlawful Possession of Weapon by a Felon. No attorney was appointed at this time for Beccue, as his family has indicated they would like time to try and find a private attorney. Beccue’s bond was set on Friday at 1 million dollars. But, Fayette County State’s Attorney Joshua Morrison said there is an outstanding warrant for parole from the Illinois Department of Corrections and they will send him back to DOC. Assistant State’s Attorney Brenda Mathis said they would like the bond amount to remain as a hold for DOC purposes at this time. And, Fayette County Sheriff Chris Smith was in court and said Beccue will be returning to DOC today. Beccue is now set for a preliminary hearing on August 30th at 11 am.
After a brief search on Friday, Beccue was arrested in connection with the shooting that caused fatal injuries to Joshua K. Smith. At the time of the initial charges, Beccue was charged with Attempted First Degree Murder. But, Smith passed away on Friday afternoon. And, the charges were officially amended to First Degree Murder today.