- UPDATED 3:30 p.m. with murder charge.
LINCOLN COUNTY • A Lincoln County man has been charged with killing the mother of his girlfriend.
William Galvin, 50, of the first block of Sweet Street west of Winfield, faces a second-degree murder charge, Lincoln County authorities said. He had been staying with his girlfriend's mother, Bonnie Lee Brown, 77, and was caring for Brown while the girlfriend was in jail, family members said.
Prosecutor Leah Askey said Galvin was being held in lieu of $250,000 cash-only bail.
Galvin also has been charged with financial exploitation of the elderly after he attempted to get control over Brown's bank account the day her lifeless body was found.
Court documents on that charge say Galvin went to People's Bank and Trust of Winfield Monday morning and tried to get an employee to change the designated signatory on Brown's account to his name so he would have sole access to the money.
The employee told him he couldn't do that without Brown's signature, according to the documents. He then told the employee Brown had died of an overdose sometime over the weekend. The employee told him he would have to go to court to change the account.
Galvin then went to a different teller and cashed a $50 check made out to cash from his own account. He also told that teller that Brown had died.
Later that morning, Galvin called 911 to report finding Brown's body in the trailer where they lived on Sweet Street off of Highway 47. He suggested there had been a robbery, authorities said. Some signs of forced entry were found.
Investigators said Galvin told them Brown was alive before he went to the bank.
Megan Clark, 28, said Tuesday that her mother and her mother's boyfriend had been living with Brown, but her mother has been in jail in St. Charles County since last month in a bad check case. A stroke had limited her grandmother's movement.
Clark and her boyfriend, Mark Hilding, 49, travel across the country as long-haul truckers. She said they kept in touch with Brown regularly, and she called her from the road Sunday night.
Clark said Tuesday that Brown never backed down from speaking her mind, but was polite.
"She liked keeping things calm," Clark said. "She was a happy person."