News Local/State

Coroner Identifies Woman as Accused’s Mother


Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup has positively identified the woman found dead in a Champaign apartment Friday morning as 61-year old Sharon "Shirley' Brownlee of Urbana.

Northrup says a comparison of dental records confirmed the woman's identity, but says a final cause of death is being withheld pending receipt of all lab results, and an ongoing criminal investigation.

Brownlee's body was found in the charred apartment in the 400 block of South State Street.  She had been stabbed multiple times. 

Brownlee's son, 31-year old Terry Brownlee was formally charged Monday in her death. 

He also faces counts of aggravated arson and concealment of a homicidal death, and remains in the Champaign County Jail on $5-million bond.

Mrs. Brownlee's death remains under investigation by the Coroner's Office and Champaign Police.