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The County of DuPage
Wheaton, Illinois

Press Release

Contact Information: Communications Director: 630-407-8160

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Bellwood Man Sentenced to 22 Years for Tobacco Store Murder

DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin announced today that Kenneth Bardlett, 24, (d.o.b. 10/20/1993) of Bellwood, has been sentenced to twenty-two years in the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) for his role in the 2014 murder of Bensenville tobacco store owner Hussein Saghir. On March 27, 2014, Bardlett entered a plea of guilty to one count of Aggravated Battery with a Firearm, a Class X Felony, for the crime. As part of his plea agreement, Bardlett agreed to testify truthfully against any and all co-defendants involved in the murder. In exchange, the State agreed to a sentencing recommendation of twenty years to be served at 85%. During the trial against one of his co-defendants however, Bartlett lied while on the witness stand. Consequently, the State filed a motion to withdraw the plea agreement. This motion was granted by the court and First Degree Murder charges were reinstated against Bardlett. Additionally, the Court also found Bardlett in contempt of court for “engaging in unruly verbal and physical behavior” and for “providing false testimony” and sentenced Bardlett to 180 days in the County jail with credit for time served. Two other men, both from Chicago, were charged in the murder - Tremayne Davis, 27 and Stephan Russell, 25. On December 2, 2016, Davis entered a plea of guilty to one count of Attempt Armed Robbery with a Firearm (Class 1 Felony) and sentenced to eight years in the IDOC. Following a three-day-long trial in November 2017, a jury found Russell guilty of two counts of First Degree Murder and one count of Attempt Armed Robbery with a Firearm. Russell’s next court appearance is scheduled for June 18, 2018 for sentencing in front of Judge Daniel Guerin.

At approximately 5:45 p.m., January 19, 2014, Bardlett, Davis and Russell went to the Sam’s Tobacco and Foodmart on Irving Park Road in Bensenville. While Davis remained in the vehicle, Bardlett and Russell encountered Saghir and his brother outside the store as the men were preparing to close up for the evening. Following a brief altercation between the men, Saghir was shot and killed. After the murder, Bardlett, Davis and Russell fled the scene. An investigation led by the Bensenville Police Department, the Major Crimes Task Force and the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office led authorities to the men. 

“Regardless of what Mr. Bardlett has said or done in the past in relation to this case, the fact remains that Mr. Saghir is no longer here, able to share in the lives of his loved ones,” Berlin said. “For his role in the murder, Mr. Bardlett will now spend the next twenty-two years of his life behind bars. Our judicial system is a truth-seeking process and for this system to work properly it must be safeguarded from misstatements, mischaracterizations and especially outright lies aimed at distorting the truth. Mr. Bardlett had a deal – to tell the truth when called upon. He chose to ignore that deal in an effort to infect the judicial system and in doing so added years to his prison sentence. I would like to thank Assistant State’s Attorneys Mike Pawl and Kristin Johnston for their extended efforts over the past several years in holding Mr. Bardlett, Mr. Davis and Mr. Russell responsible for the senseless murder of Hussein Saghir.”

 Bardlett will be required to serve 100% of his sentence. He will receive credit for time served in jail awaiting trial.