Services are set for a 7-year-old southern Illinois girl who prosecutors allege was stabbed to death by an uncle.
Authorities say Willow Long was killed late Saturday or early Sunday near her home in Watson, a small village in Effingham County.
Prosecutors have charged 22-year-old Justin DeRyke with three counts of first-degree murder in connection with her death.
Authorities say he told investigators he killed his niece to end her suffering after she accidentally fell onto a brush pile and pierced her neck with a stick.
Willow’s services will be at 11 a.m. Monday at First Baptist Church in Effingham, followed by private burial.
Visitation will be from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday at Effingham high school.
DeRyke remains jailed on $5 million bail, and is hiring a private attorney.
Illinois state child-welfare officials announced Thursday they have taken Willow’s 3-year-old little brother into custody, noting that until the girl’s death they had no involvement with the Watson village family.