13th conviction: 4 years in prison

13th conviction: 4 years in prison

URBANA — An Urbana man with a dozen prior criminal convictions, including seven for residential burglary, has been sentenced to four years in prison for his 13th conviction.

Judge Tom Difanis imposed the sentence Monday on Devon Lites, 37, whose last known address was in the 800 block of East Oakland Avenue, for theft with a prior residential burglary conviction.

Lites pleaded guilty to that felony in mid-January, admitting that on Oct. 25, he sold a guitar at a music store in Champaign that police later determined had been stolen in a residential burglary two days earlier.

Assistant State's Attorney Troy Lozar said a couple living in the 600 block of South State Street, Champaign, discovered their home had been burglarized on Oct. 23. They figured out that a guitar, camera, jewelry and cash had been stolen. On the following day, their camera was sold at a pawn shop by Lites, who gave the proprietor his identification. On Oct. 25, he sold the guitar at the music store.

Lozar said Lites told Champaign police he bought the property from a "man on a bike" and knew he paid less for it than it was worth.

Assistant State's Attorney Troy Lozar agreed to dismiss charges of residential burglary and theft in return for Lites' plea. Lozar recommended a 30-month prison sentence while Assistant Public Defender George Vargas asked the judge to consider probation, saying Lites had turned his life around.

Difanis disagreed, relying on court records that show Lites had seven prior convictions for residential burglary, as well as others for battery, aggravated assault, burglary, attempted domestic battery, theft, and possession of cocaine since 1998.

He was given credit on his sentence for 68 days served.

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CommonSenseless wrote on February 14, 2018 at 12:02 pm

Assistant State's Attorney Troy Lozar agreed to dismiss charges of residential burglary and theft in return for Lites' plea. Lozar recommended a 30-month prison sentence while Assistant Public Defender George Vargas asked the judge to consider probation, saying Lites had turned his life around. 

It sounds like every government employed attorney in Champaign county needs to be replaced.  30 mos?  Probation? What?

GLG wrote on February 14, 2018 at 3:02 pm

The 13th times a charm!!!  Time for Reitz and Difanis to go!! Even George Vargas who ran against Reitz and accused her of being soft on crime is starting to act just like her!  You voted for this kind of justice, Enjoy it!