Man sentenced to probation for battery plea

URBANA — A Rantoul man who admitted taking part in a beating that sent a man to the hospital more than a year ago has been sentenced to probation.

Jonathan Hughes, 23, pleaded guilty Tuesday before Champaign County Judge Tom Difanis to the May 6, 2012, battery of a Champaign man who was 21 at the time.

The victim was walking on Green Street near Fourth about 2:50 a.m. that day when he saw another man, identified as Zachary Lingard, 22, of Urbana, arguing with a woman. The Champaign man tried to calm Lingard but Lingard and two others — Hughes and Sahr Lebbie, 22, of Rantoul, turned on the victim and began hitting him.

All three were arrested and charged with aggravated battery. Lingard and Lebbie previously pleaded guilty to the felony aggravated battery charge for a sentence of two years of probation while Hughes was allowed to plead guilty to the less serious misdemeanor battery charge.

All three men were ordered to make restitution totaling $1,000 to the victim.

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