“I know I did wrong. I’m taking what I got coming to me.”   

Those were the words of a 34-year-old Coal Valley man sentenced Wednesday to up to 20 years for his role in an apartment robbery that ended in a homicide.    

Cordell McDowell, with three members of his family present in the Scott County courtroom, was sentenced to serve up to 20 years. He was sentenced to 10 years for each of the charges, which will be served consecutively – that is, one after the other.   

Cordell McDowell (photo: Scott County Jail)

Earlier, McDowell – who at first faced charges that included first-degree murder – withdrew a plea of not guilty and pleaded guilty to lesser charges of willful injury resulting in serious injury and conspiracy to commit a forcible felony.   

McDowell was accompanied by attorney Andrea D. Jaeger, who briefly discussed McDowell’s past. “Mr. McDowell is … not the shooter, if you will,” she said. “He does have a rocky childhood, to say the least.”

Judge Patrick McElyea addressed McDowell directly, and said McDowell sounded remorseful.   

“You’re losing a lot of years,” McElyea told him. “We need you to be a productive member of society. We need for you to be part of your family,” he told McDowell, who has children.

‘I know I did wrong. I’d like to change,” McDowell said.

As he was led out of the courtroom, one of his family members said, “I love you.” 

The incident

At 6:45 a.m. Aug. 22, 2020, Davenport Police responded to a report of gunfire inside an apartment on the 6500 block of Harrison Street, Davenport. Police found 45-year-old Sylvester Eddings Jr., of Moline, with a single gunshot wound just below his collarbone.  

He was transported to Genesis Medical Center – East Campus, Davenport, where he was pronounced dead.   

Demarcus Liddell, of Coal Valley; Derrick Hargrett, of Rockford, Ill.; and Taneshia Coleman, of Davenport; also face charges in this case. Local 4 News will continue to be in court as the cases progress.