Phillip Gehrken

ARGENTA, Ill. (WAND)– One dead after shots fired in Argenta, over a financial dispute, police say.

The Macon County Sheriffs office responded to 7414 Jordan Road in Rural Argenta, for reports of a man having been shot Sunday, July 11, at 6:20 p.m.

Officials say, upon arrival, deputies located a 51-year-old male deceased from multiple gunshot wounds.

The Macon County Coroner has identified the deceased as Kevin M. Cooper 51, of Decatur. 

According to police, the initial investigation revealed that Cooper was confronting Phillip Gehrken, 52, of Forsyth, about recent financial disputes; when Gehrken shot at him multiple times at an Argenta residence.

Gehrken was placed into custody by detectives on the scene and booked into the Macon County Jail on charges of homicide, unlawful use of a weapon, and possession of a weapon by a felon.

He is awaiting his initial appearance in court this morning.

An autopsy for Cooper is scheduled for Monday afternoon at the McLean County Coroner's Morgue. 

Gehrken was previously arrested on June 23, for manufacture/delivery of a controlled substance, and was released the next day after posting 10% of his bond. 

He is due in court July 27 in regards to his previous charge.    

Search warrants were obtained by the investigators authorizing a thorough search of the residence in Argenta and a residence in Forsyth.

This situation remains under investigation by the Macon County Sheriff’s Office and the Illinois State Police Crime Scene Division.

Gerhken's bond is set for $150,000. 

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