Rockford's 8th Homicide

By: Tina Stein
By: Tina Stein

His family calls him the jack-of-all trades. A talented landscaper, carpenter and painter. But now, 50-year-old Bill Jacobsen is known as a victim. Someone murdered him in his Whitman Street home Thursday night.

"It's just an unbelievable tragedy, it's a tremendous loss it's a loss to the community a loss to the family," says Bruce Jacobsen, Bill's cousin.

Jacobsen grew up in Loves Park and has spent the second half of his life at 638 Whitman. His family says he often chased away drug dealers and even offered to help those in need.

"People would panhandle from him and he'd offer to give them a job," Jacobsen says.

Relatives say Jacobsen was attacked and robbed three years ago, however he never complained even to those that saw him everyday.

"He was in bad shape had a broken jaw and I only heard about it from his mom," says neighbor Laura Figueroa.

An adventure seeker in his youth, Jacobsen chose to stay on Whitman Street even when others left due to a spike in drug activity.

"He was hanging in there trying to be a good person and help make it be a good neighborhood ad let like an obligation to some of the neighbors who were doing the same thing and just didn't make it," Jacobsen says.

Police are still searching for a suspect. If you know anything about this murder please call Crimestoppers.

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  • by Ashley Location: kenosha,wi on Jul 9, 2007 at 08:02 PM
    Bill was my uncle. He was hard working.He loved his family and friends. And I will always love him.R.I.P. William Martin Jacobsen
  • by Brit Location: 855 haskell ave on Jun 27, 2007 at 04:36 PM
    I live next to him n he was killed by bein beating to death..At lest that is what i heard from my mother-n-law..She called me at work n told me the police found him dead beating to death..I couldn't beleive it..The nice man next door was dead..I hope they fined the person reponsible for killin him..Ive was reading the other comments n the news artical n yes we do have a bad neigborhood n it need to get better for the living n for ppl who have kids..But in the mean time R.I.P to him n My heart goes out to the mother,and surviving family members,God BLESS YOU!
  • by Diane Location: Rockford on Jun 25, 2007 at 10:48 PM
    It is very sad to hear this...good people are the ones that try to make a difference in our communities, some people just can't stand to see a good person do so much good...My prayers go out for this man's family & friends. I hope they catch the person or persons who this this, & throw away the key !!!!
  • by Rose Location: Rockford on Jun 25, 2007 at 12:37 AM
    Rockford needs more fight against drugs here is another life taken. this didnt have to happen 2 deaths in less than a month , this is crazy
  • by Donna on Jun 23, 2007 at 09:15 PM
    I find it hard to nap,or feel a breeze blowing in with my doors open! That could just as easily been one of my loved ones or family members! My heart goes out to the mother,and surviving family members,God BLESS YOU!
  • by Brent Location: Belvidere on Jun 23, 2007 at 07:47 AM
    This crime does not reek of the normal path of violent crime in Rockford. This was one was commited against a person who was not apart of the "violence culture." What I mean by that is Killers killing each other. That means a vicious killer of the peaceful is on the loose. I remember in 1974 watching Walter Cronkite pronouce that the FBI had anounced that Rockford IL had the lowest amount of crime for a city with a population of 100,000. What has happened in the last 30 plus years? Rockford can have all the slick media events it wants to attract young professionals. It won't work as long as random, wantless crime is not squelched. Spining the victims as quiet loners won't work either. I am not refering to this media outlet here. Just what I have seen in other Rockford media. See, I knew Bill. I also know Rockfords problems. Bill is gone, Rockfords problems remain. They way I see it if you live in Rockford you have two choices. Stand up and scream you have had enough or just keep going with your head in the sand. My third option that I have exercised personally. Don't live there! I wish Bill had done so. The community at large would have been much richer for it, than a little poorer today. Pray for yourself Rockford, it is the only way to rid entrenched evil.
  • by bob kantner Location: rockford on Jun 22, 2007 at 05:19 PM
    how was he killed?
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