Man sentenced to probation for injuring 2-year-old
URBANA — A Rantoul man who admitted breaking the leg of a toddler almost a year ago has been sentenced to two years of probation.
Dustin J. Riddle, 22, who listed an address in the Fountain Valley Mobile Home Park, pleaded guilty Thursday before Judge Tom Difanis to aggravated battery, admitting that on Jan. 29, 2013, he grabbed a then-2-year-old boy, forced him to the ground and broke his leg.
A Champaign County sheriff's deputy's report said that Riddle was home caring for the child and the boy's younger brother while their mother was at work.
The report said Riddle heard a commotion between the children and after checking on it, picked up the 2-year-old by his hips, spun him around and forced him to the ground in a single motion.
A letter in Riddle's court file from the victim's mother said the child is healing thanks to a plate and screws put in his leg.
And Riddle's attorney, Tom Bruno of Urbana, maintained that Riddle's handling of the child was an accident.
"It was unintentional as he was attempting to discipline one child for striking another and he has been working with counselors and DCFS in the year since it happened," said Bruno.
In exchange for Riddle's plea, Assistant State's Attorney Sarah Carlson agreed to dismiss a more serious charged of aggravated battery to a child.
Riddle was also ordered to obtain a mental health evaluation and get anger management counseling.