Man charged with murder of mother, found dismembered in lagoon

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Gail Peck (left) and Brian Peck | Elgin police

CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) - The Cook County medial examiner’s office has confirmed that human remains found in duffel bags in a lagoon in Lincoln Park are those of a 76-year-old Elgin woman, whose son has been charged with her murder.

Bond was denied Tuesday for a 55-year-old Brian Peck, charged with killing his mother and discarding her dismembered body in the North Side lagoon.

Peck was charged with premeditated first-degree murder, first-degree murder and concealment of a homicidal death, according to Elgin police.

At 3:37 p.m. Friday, Peck reported his mother, Gail Peck, missing, police said.

He told police his mother had gone for a walk with her dog, and the dog returned to their shared home in the 700 block of Littleton Trail in Elgin without her, police said.

Officers conducted an hours-long search of the area, including using ATVs, the Community Emergency Response Team, the Hanover Township Emergency Services Team, an Elgin drone, a Cook County helicopter and officers on foot, police said. Many residents of the neighborhood assisted with the search.

During the search, detectives concluded the disappearance might not have occurred as reported, and the Peck home was searched “extensively” after detectives received a warrant.

About 11 a.m. the next morning, fishermen at the lagoon in the 2200 block of North Stockton Drive found a duffel bag containing human remains, according to Chicago Police.

Members of the police Marine Unit responded and a second duffel bag was discovered with additional remains, police said. The remains in both bags appeared to be of a white woman, according to the medical examiner’s office.

Evidence that the body was Gail Peck was obtained after “thorough research by investigators,” police said in announcing charges, though the medical examiner had not made a positive ID.

That happened Thursday, when the medical examiner’s office confirmed the identification as the missing woman.

“Scientific testing has confirmed the remains, which are a torso and parts of two legs, to be those of Gail Peck,” a statement from the medical examiner’s office said.

An autopsy was conducted October 29, but the cause and manner of death are pending further studies and investigation.

Brian Peck was denied bond during a hearing at the Rolling Meadows courthouse, according to Cook County sheriff’s office records. His next court date is scheduled for Nov. 11.