Man pleads innocent to involuntary manslaughter charge

Man pleads innocent to involuntary manslaughter charge

URBANA — A Champaign man is being held at the Champaign County Jail on $100,000 bond in connection with the fatal shooting of an Indiana woman early Friday morning at a Champaign motel.

Antonio Lawan Brown, 20, who listed an address in the 1300 block of Paula Drive, Champaign, pleaded innocent on Monday to one count of involuntary manslaughter and one count of felony possession or use of a firearm by a felon.

Judge Richard Klaus set Brown’s next court appearance for March 5.

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said that Sydni Kay Blackwell, 20, of Williamsport, Ind., was pronounced dead at 12:45 p.m. Friday at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana.

According to a police report, Brown accidentally shot Ms. Blackwell, his girlfriend, at the Super 8 Motel, 202 W. Marketview Drive, Champaign, at 3:01 a.m. Friday.

The report said that both Brown and Ms. Blackwell told police that Brown improperly handled a gun, causing it to accidentally discharge a round and wound Ms. Blackwell.

Brown took Ms. Blackwell to the hospital so she could be treated for the gunshot wound.

Dunn said police arrested Brown after recovering the gun that had been used in the shooting.

Northrup said on Monday evening that an autopsy conducted on Saturday determined that Ms. Blackwell died from a gunshot wound.

Northrup said an inquest may be held at a later date.

The death is being investigated by Northrup’s office and the Champaign Police Department.

Comments embraces discussion of both community and world issues. We welcome you to contribute your ideas, opinions and comments, but we ask that you avoid personal attacks, vulgarity and hate speech. We reserve the right to remove any comment at our discretion, and we will block repeat offenders' accounts. To post comments, you must first be a registered user, and your username will appear with any comment you post. Happy posting.

Login or register to post comments

use er name wrote on January 14, 2013 at 8:01 pm

He pleaded NOT GUILTY!!!   There is no plea of " innocent". EVER, EVER, EVER. EVER




Are we catching on?




rsp wrote on January 15, 2013 at 5:01 am

Actually there are cases where there are findings of actual innocence, but they are at a much higher level. Our legal system isn't based on guilt or innocence, it's based on can the government prove it's case. Innocent till proven guilty. There are other countries where you are arrested and you have to prove you didn't commit a crime. In many cases that can be impossible because you don't have access to anything.