DuPage County News Briefs

Chronicle Media Staff



Valparaiso University Chorale




Jury finds man guilty in shooting death of mom 


A jury has found Michael Basally, formerly of Downers Grove, guilty of first degree murder in the shooting death of his mother Yvonne Zaky Bassaly, 61, also of Downers Grove.

The jury also found Bassaly guilty of personally discharging the firearm that killed his mother, making him eligible for an extended prison term in prison.

The jury rendered their verdict after approximately two hours of deliberations following a three-day-long trial in front of Judge Daniel Guerin. Bassaly has been held in custody without bond at the DuPage County Jail since the murder.

Early on August 29, 2013, Burr Ridge police discovered Bassaly’s mother in the backseat of his vehicle at St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church. She had been shot once in the head and was gasping for air. Mrs. Bassaly was immediately taken from the scene by ambulance to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead. An investigation led authorities to her son Michael as the man who shot his mother in the head.

“Today, a jury saw through his lies and feeble attempts to avoid responsibility for the murder of his own mother by claims of suicide,” said DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert B. Berlin. “This was a very difficult case as the victim and defendant are mother and son. To the entire Bassaly family, I wish them some measure of closure as they come to the final stages of this horrible family tragedy.”

Bassaly’s next court appearance is scheduled for March 22, for post-trial motions and return of the pre-sentence report. He faces a prison sentence of between forty-five years to life in the Illinois Department of Corrections.



$50,000 bond set in drug-induced homicide 


Bond has been set at $50,000 for a Cicero man accused of supplying heroin to Zachary Giebel, 25, of Wisconsin, who died as a result of a heroin overdose.

Matthew Chapman, 30, appeared in Bond Court last week where Judge Paul Marchese set bond at $500,000 with 10% to apply in accordance with a previously issued arrest warrant. He has been charged with one count of Drug Induced Homicide, a Class X Felony, and one count of Unlawful Delivery of a Controlled Substance, a Class 1 Felony.

On August 13, 2016, Giebel allegedly traveled to Oak Brook to attend a party with friends. It is further alleged that the following day, Giebel contacted Chapman, who used to live in Wisconsin, to purchase heroin. It is alleged Chapman sold Giebel heroin which Giebel then ingested. It is alleged that at approximately 5 a.m. the following morning, friends of Giebel found him unresponsive in his Oak Brook hotel room and dialed 911.

An investigation led by the Oak Brook Police Department with assistance from DuMEG led to Chapman who was taken into custody yesterday without incident.





District 203 names Naperville park district ‘exemplary’ partner 


Naperville Community Unit School District 203 recently honored the Naperville Park District with its 2017 Exemplary Business Partnership Award.

The award recognized a three-year collaboration between the Park District and School District 203 to offer Summer School Camp, allowing students enrolled in morning summer school to attend a summer camp in the afternoon.

The Summer School Camp idea developed from a conversation between the Park District and School District 203. The goal was to get students involved in summer school who might not otherwise attend due to their parents’ work commitments and transportation challenges.

Both the Park District and School District recognized that their missions were complementary and agreed that a partnership to provide program of this kind would fulfill a need for residents. Participation over three years demonstrates this with attendance having more than tripled since 2014.






Public invited to meeting on Great Western Trail extension 


The DuPage County Division of Transportation will explain its plans to extend the Great Western Trail at a meeting 4-7 p.m. March 1 at the West Chicago Public Library, 118 W. Washington St.

County officials say that the extension — from Sassafras Drive in West Chicago to the Illinois Prairie Path-Elgin branch — will allow nearby neighborhoods access to the DuPage County trail system, and will not require right-of-way acquisition.

County representatives will answer questions and exhibits will available for public review. For more information, contact Ryan Singer with the DuPage County Division of Transportation at (630) 407-6900.






Book fines can be paid with donations of food 


The Aurora Public Library is conducting its semiannual Food for Fines drive throughout March. The items will be donated to the Marie Wilkinson Food Pantry. All library locations – Santori, Eola Road Branch, West Branch and the Bookmobile – will accept one item of nonperishable food in payment for every $1 in fines up to $5 in fines per person. Only nonperishable, labeled items in containers that are not damaged, expired or rusty will be accepted.

Needed items are:

  • Beans, canned or dried
  • Boxed meals
  • Cereals
  • Fruit, in cans or squeeze packs
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Peanut butter, jelly and jams
  • Pasta, in cans, bags or boxes
  • Canned food: soups, sauces, stews, meat, chili, tuna and vegetables






Two college choirs to perform at area Lutheran churches 


Premier college choirs will fill two churches with song March 5.  Valparaiso University’s Chorale will perform at 4 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church, 493 Forest Ave., Glen Ellyn. The renowned Collegiate Choir of Illinois Wesleyan University will perform at 3 p.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Lincoln and Maple streets, Lombard.

This will be Valparaiso University Chorale’s first performance at Grace Lutheran Church. The chorale is one of the leading Lutheran collegiate choirs in the United States. Under the direction of Christopher Cook, it will travel to Germany this year to perform for the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Tickets are $10, and can be purchased at graceglenellyn.org or at the door. Call (630) 469-1555 for more information.

The Collegiate Choir of Illinois Wesleyan University will conclude the 10th season of Artist Series presentations at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Lombard. The Collegiate Choir is dedicated to the performance of the finest sacred and secular choral music spanning six centuries and a variety of languages. The choir is under the direction of Dr. J. Scott Ferguson, director of choral activities at Illinois Wesleyan.






Benedictine president’s film to be shown 


Benedictine University President Michael S. Brophy’s dramatic film about an inherited skin disorder will be shown at 7 p.m. March 14, in Goodwin Hall Auditorium at Benedictine University, 5700 College Road, Lisle.

In his 2005 film “Night for Day: The XP Story,” Brophy, an award-winning writer and director, examines the dramatic and unusual ways patients afflicted with xeroderma pigmentosum around the world cope with the debilitating disease characterized by extreme sensitivity to ultraviolet (sun) light that can lead to cancer and death. The screening is free, and a Q&A will follow.

XP is caused by mutations in genes that repair DNA, which can be damaged by ultraviolet light and toxic chemicals such as those found in cigarette smoke. Without sun protection, about half the children with this disorder develop their first skin cancer by age 10. Roughly 30 percent of those with XP develop neurological abnormalities such as hearing loss, difficulty walking, swallowing and talking and loss of intellectual function.

An accomplished filmmaker, Brophy has written and directed three feature films, which have been screened at festivals, museums, theaters and universities in the United States, Cuba and Europe.






St. Patrick’s Day 5K to raise funds for mental illness aid 


Naperville’s annual St. Paddy’s Day 5K will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by helping people with mental illnesses. The St. Paddy’s Day 5K will start at 8 a.m. March 11, in downtown Naperville, and be followed by the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The parade will start at 10 a.m.

Organized by the Rotary Club of Naperville Sunrise, in cooperation with West suburban Irish, this year’s race will support the National Alliance on Mental Illness of DuPage County and its early intervention program called Ending the Silence. The program helps teens learn to recognize the early warning signs of mental illness and what to do if they or someone they know is exhibiting these signs.

The race will follow the St. Patrick’s Day Parade route, which will begin and ends at Jackson Avenue and West Street near Centennial Beach.

A post-race party for racers and sponsors, featuring refreshments that include corned beef sandwiches and green beer, will take place in the registration tent. Costumes are encouraged and will be judged for prizes prior to the race.