Father Sentenced to Life Without Parole for Drowning Three Young Children Chilling Crime Unveiled

by Jessica

According to Truecreime, A 36-year-old father, Jason Karels, has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the tragic drowning death of his three children, all under the age of 5. The sentencing, announced by the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office on February 16, comes after Karels entered a guilty but mentally ill plea in December 2023.

The victims, identified as 2-year-old Gideon Karels, 3-year-old Cassidy Karels, and 5-year-old Bryant Karels, met their untimely demise on June 13, 2022. At approximately 1:40 p.m., the Round Lake Beach Police Department responded to a welfare check request in the 200 block of East Camden Lane. The children’s mother discovered them lifeless and immediately contacted the authorities.

Upon entering the home, police found the children and a chilling note left by Karels, stating, “If I can’t have them neither can you.” Fleeing the scene before investigators arrived, Karels was later pursued by Illinois State Troopers for 17 minutes, ultimately being apprehended after a crash near Interstate 80 and Water Street in Joliet. During his arrest, Karels reportedly made statements to police officers confessing to his role in the triple homicide.

Reports indicate that the mother, Debra Karels, was in the process of gaining full custody of the victims at the time of their tragic deaths, and she was estranged from Jason Karels. The Lake County Coroner’s Office determined that the children had fatally drowned.

Impact statements were delivered by the children’s mother, maternal grandmother, and aunt during the sentencing hearing. Describing the victims as “beautiful, innocent children who did not deserve what happened to them,” the family condemned Karels as a “monster” who betrayed his role as the one person meant to love and protect the children at all costs.

Chief of the Domestic Violence Division, Eric Kalata, characterized Karels’ actions as “brutal, evil, and sinister,” while Judge James Booras expressed his disgust, describing the crime as “sickening” and “despicable.” The sentencing ensures that Jason Karels will spend the remainder of his life behind bars for this heart-wrenching act.

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