Father waits years for son's murder case to go to trial - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Father waits years for son's murder case to go to trial

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For the first time, Justin's father is speaking out, demanding justice. For the first time, Justin's father is speaking out, demanding justice.
Christopher Hepburn is a dad trying to find out what happened to his son. Christopher Hepburn is a dad trying to find out what happened to his son.
Two and a half years after Justin died, he's still determined. Two and a half years after Justin died, he's still determined.
JONESBORO, IL (KFVS) - It's been two and a half years since four-year-old Justin Hepburn died.

His father's girlfriend at the time, Sacha Brown, was charged with first degree murder.

Brown posted her bond in the time that's passed and the case still hasn't gone to trial.

For the first time, Justin's father is speaking out, demanding justice.

"It really makes you think twice about the justice of our legal system to be honest," he said.

Christopher Hepburn is a dad trying to find out what happened to his son.

Two and a half years after Justin died, he's still determined.

"People are giving up," said Christopher. "Well I can't give up. I will not give up. I refuse to give up."

Back in December of 2011, Christopher left his son Justin with Sacha Brown, his girlfriend of more than a year.

Christopher was going out of town for work.

Just hours later he got the call that changed his life forever.

"I got a phone call from her dad saying my son had passed away and I need to come home. And I immediately fell to the ground," Christopher said.

Since then, his life has revolved around his son's case.

Sacha Brown was charged with first degree murder, aggravated battery and concealment of homicidal death.

Prosecutors believe Brown hit Justin in the head and then tried to cover up the murder.

The case still hasn't gone to trial.

"It's very unnerving to know it can be put off so many times for so long and for someone that is accused of a crime of such heinous nature to be able to walk around free of their own accord and do what they wish in life," he said. "He's not given that opportunity."

The opportunity for a child Christopher called, "the happiest he's ever met."

"It's kinda hard to sum up someone of such greatness in such short words," he said.

That greatness inspires Christopher to keep going.

Court records show they've gone before a judge more than 40 times.

Still Christopher waits, never losing hope.

"I just want the facts to come out so people will know what happened. Cause I don't even know. I'm still waiting for this trial so I can find out exactly what happened to my son," he said. "Imagine two and a half years of not knowing and sitting and wondering what happened. All day every day. It'll drive you insane."

He hopes public involvement with help move the case forward. He's using social media to gain support.

"I hope that more people show up than the courthouse can handle," he said. "I hope they see how many people's lives are affected. I hope they set a trial date and they keep it. And that it actually happens."

Because for Christopher, Justin will always be on his mind and in his heart.

"I've got a picture of him right over my heart. I carry him with me every day," said Christopher.

A Facebook event shows more than 20 people plan to be at the courthouse for the next hearing this Wednesday, July 2 at 10 a.m.

Union County State's Attorney Tyler Edmonds said this case remains a top priority for them.

Edmonds said he's hopeful they can agree on a date with the defense and see this case to trial.

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