Champaign man gets 60 years for murder

Champaign man gets 60 years for murder

URBANA — A Champaign County judge Tuesday sentenced a Champaign man to the maximum he could have received for pummeling a man to death.

Jermaine Davis, 36, will spend the next 60 years in prison for the beating he administered on Sept. 16 that led to the death of Russell Stokes the next day.

A Champaign County jury convicted Davis of first-degree murder in February, rejecting Davis' claim that he was acting in self-defense when he rained blows on Mr. Stokes with his fists and feet at an apartment at 306 E. Park St., C.

On Sept. 16, Davis came to the apartment, which was rented by his sometimes-girlfriend Constance Chapple, 45, and found her and Mr. Stokes engaged in sex.

Davis and Mr. Stokes argued and Davis claimed that Mr. Stokes hit him in the face, causing him to not remember anything after that.

A pathologist testified that Mr. Stokes sustained as many as two dozen separate blows to his head, neck and upper torso that resulted in bleeding in his brain, crushed bones in his face and other trauma.

Davis and Chapple then dragged him outside the building where he was found unconscious hours later. He was taken to Carle Hospital, where he died Sept. 17.

After moving him, Davis and Chapple cleaned up the blood in the apartment and hallway but not before Davis took photos on his cell phone of the injured Mr. Stokes.

Chapple is charged with concealment of a homicidal death and obstructing justice. Her case remains unresolved.

Assistant State's Attorney Troy Lozar recommended 40 years in prison for Davis while his attorney, Assistant Public Defender Scott Schmidt asked for the minimum of 20 years.

"The bottom line is, Mr. Davis is a dangerous individual," said Judge Tom Difanis in imposing the maximum.

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