Dante L. Wade

Dante L. Wade

DECATUR — Dante L. Wade appeared in court on Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to shooting his daughter’s boyfriend to death in an argument that police said escalated from a dispute over a cellphone.

Wade, 45, is facing three counts of murder in the death of 25-year-old Marcqui Apholone, who was killed the night of Nov. 9 after suffering multiple gunshot wounds in the driveway of a house in the 2100 block of East Whitmer Street.

Wade was arrested in Northern Illinois on Nov. 19 after his name surfaced during the Decatur police investigation and a warrant was obtained.

Giving evidence in Macon County Circuit Court at a preliminary hearing, detective Jeremy Appenzeller said Apholone got into an argument with his girlfriend earlier in the day at Richland Communithy College. Under questioning from State’s Attorney Jay Scott, Appenzeller said Apholone had taken a set of keys in revenge because “she had possession of his cellphone.”

Appenzeller testified that a friend of Apholone said he went with him to a house in the 2100 block of East Whitmer Street the night of Nov. 9, and Apholone told him he was going outside to meet his girlfriend and get his phone back.

“And after he went outside, did (the friend) state he heard an argument where the victim was yelling, ‘Give me my cellphone,’ and a female was yelling, ‘Give me my keys’? Scott asked. “Yes,” said Appenzeller, who said the friend then heard several gunshots and the sound of a vehicle speeding away from the area.

Appenzeller said a witness to the confrontation described Wade running up to Apholone, grabbing him and then opening fire.

“And then he fired and missed, fired again and missed, and then fired several more shots, striking the victim?” Scott asked. “Yes,” said Appenzeller.

Wade’s attorney, Thomas C. Brandstrader, asked Appenzeller if he had interviewed any other eyewitnesses who claimed Wade had fired a gun that night, and the detective said he had not.

Judge Phoebe Bowers found probable cause to try Wade for murder and set the case for a pretrial hearing Feb. 4. Wade remained in the Macon County Jail in lieu of posting $1 million bail.

2018 mug shots from the Herald & Review

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Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid


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