Prison sentence for drunk driver

URBANA — A Champaign man who crashed a stolen car into a house last spring while driving drunk has been sentenced to three years in prison.

Demetrius Winfrey, 26, who listed an address in the 400 block of North State Street, pleaded guilty Monday before Judge Tom Difanis to aggravated driving under the influence, a felony.

Because of prior convictions, Winfrey faced an extended term of up to six years in prison.

The charge stemmed from a March 16 incident in which Winfrey and another man reportedly stole a car from the 2500 block of West Springfield Avenue in Champaign about 8:15 p.m. Minutes later, the car, driven by Winfrey, drove up into a yard at 202 N. Mattis Ave., and crashed through the front of the house, taking out a picture window and the wall below it. It also heavily damaged the car.

The owner had just left the house and was in his detached garage but his roommate, that man's son, and two dogs were inside. They were not injured.

Winfrey and co-defendant Ricardo Jackson, 32, of Champaign, ran away but were arrested later that same evening.

Winfrey was seen in the 1200 block of Northwood Drive in Champaign bleeding from the head. Jackson, whose case is unresolved, was found on North McKinley Avenue in Champaign.

In return for Winfrey's plea to the DUI charge, the charge of possession of a stolen vehicle was dismissed.

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