updated 12/1/2005 4:41:55 PM ET 2005-12-01T21:41:55

Authorities announced murder charges Thursday against a 27-year-old man in the slaying of an Illinois college student whose body was found in a burned-out Mississippi chicken coop.

Maurice Wallace also faces charges of auto theft and concealing a homicide in the death of 21-year-old Olamide Adeyooye , an Illinois State University senior who was last seen Oct. 13 at a video store near her off-campus apartment in Normal.

State’s Attorney Bill Yoder refused to answer questions about the case ahead of a court hearing Friday.

Police had named Wallace as a suspect last month. Adeyooye’s badly burned body was found Oct. 21 in Mississippi when the chicken coop’s owner was cleaning up from a fire four days earlier. She was later identified through dental records.

Wallace, who lived on the same block as Adeyooye, has been in custody since Oct. 20, when he was arrested in Atlanta on unrelated charges. Adeyooye’s car was found abandoned in Atlanta on Oct. 30.

Wallace and Adeyooye knew each other and he had been to her apartment, according to friends of Adeyooye, who was scheduled to graduate this month from the 20,000-student university.

Authorities said two autopsies failed to pinpoint the cause of death, but they will seek another autopsy and further forensic tests.

A native of Nigeria, Adeyooye moved to the Chicago suburb of Berkeley when she was 8. She studied laboratory sciences and biology at ISU.

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