Convicted sex offender Scott Eby leaves the Will County
Courthouse in Joliet, Ill. after
pleading guilty to
the 2004 murder
of 3-year-old Riley Fox. Eby was sentenced to life
in prison without
(David Pierini, Chicago Tribune / November 10, 2010)
According to Fox lawyer Kathleen Zellner, Eby drove to a nearby
park and assaulted
Riley on the floor of
a public restroom, before
he dumped her body in a creek. But
Kevin Fox said police did not
bathroom floor for DNA evidence, and did
not search the
garbage can for her underwear.
The afternoon of June 6, 2004, two female volunteers found
Riley's body face-down in
a creek in the
Forsythe Woods, about
two-and-a-half miles from the Fox residence.
She had been sexually
assaulted, bound and gagged with duct tape and drowned.
Shortly after finding Riley Fox's body in a creek at Forsythe
Woods, authorities found
a pair of muddy
shoes in the water. Written
on the inside tongue of each shoe was
the name "EBY" -- the last
of the man just charged -- six years later --
On the insistence of one of the searchers, policed placed the shoes
in evidence but
never connected it with other clues the Foxes say
could have led them to Scott
Eby in the days following her abduction,
sexual assault and murder.
The shoes are believed to be prison shoes from Eby's prior stint in
He was on parole at the time of Riley's murder.
(Courtesy Will County Sheriffs Department)
Authorities initially charged the young girl's father, Kevin Fox,
with the murder, based largely on a
videotaped confession that he'd
killed Riley. Fox was arrested in October 2004, and spent eight
months in prison before he was released and ultimately cleared
through DNA evidence. The family
sued the state and won $15 million,
which was later reduced to $8.5 million.
Riley atop Kevin’s shoulders, where she loved to ride.
Melissa and Kevin Fox pose with their children, son Tyler and
in an undated photo.
Scott Eby (inset) reportedly
told investigators he
initially intended only to burglarize the Fox