Jury convicts man for shoving officer

Jury convicts man for shoving officer

URBANA — A Champaign man who shoved a police officer to the ground to get away from him faces six to 30 years in prison when he's sentenced next month.

Even though Antwan Brown was convicted of only a single count of aggravated battery to a police officer, his prior criminal convictions make him eligible for Class X sentencing.

A Champaign County jury on Wednesday convicted Brown, 29, of the 1300 block of Comanche Drive, of shoving Urbana police Sgt. Cory Koker to the ground on Nov. 19. That same jury couldn't reach a verdict as to whether he had pushed patrol officer Elizabeth Ranck so Judge Harry Clem declared a mistrial on that count.

The facts of the case were that Ranck had responded to the 800 block of West Florida Avenue, Urbana, because a car had run out of gas and was partially in the street and a driveway. Brown was the passenger.

After running a check, Ranck discovered that Brown was wanted on a warrant so she called for Koker to back her up.

Assistant State's Attorney Scott Larson said the officers approached Brown to arrest him and he responded by pushing Koker, then running off. Both officers fell to the ground but were not seriously injured.

Larson said the jury had a question about whether one officer may have been pushed into the other.

Brown had initially been charged back in November with possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance because police found bags believed to contain heroin and cocaine in his path of flight.

However, Larson said he dismissed those charges before trial because the state crime lab said they tested negative for controlled substances.

Clem set sentencing for March 31. Larson said Brown has prior convictions for burglary, attempted residential burglary, aggravated battery and possession of a controlled substance.

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