Woman gets probation, month in jail for helping daughter hide man's gun

Woman gets probation, month in jail for helping daughter hide man's gun

URBANA — A 42-year-old Urbana woman who helped her daughter hide a gun for a man suspected of participating in a crime has been sentenced to two years of probation.

But Judge Roger Webber told Karen Thatch he wanted her to sit in jail for a month "to own that mental state you described."

Thatch told the judge before he sentenced her for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and obstructing justice that she knew she had done something wrong and that it was "weighing" on her.

The charges stemmed from her actions on June 8 with her daughter, Iyeshia Anderson, 23.

The two women admitted that after Anderson got a call from Tywone Mitchell, 22, who was in the Champaign County jail for a weapons offense, they went to an apartment in Urbana and retrieved a gun and about 87 grams of cannabis that Mitchell reportedly hid under a stairwell.

Mitchell had been arrested about a day earlier with now-convicted murderer Marquise Burnett.

Burnett was charged with the June 2, 2017, fatal shooting of Darien Carter, 24, on East Eureka Street near Douglass Park. Mitchell was not charged with the murder but was friends with Burnett, who was sentenced earlier this month to 55 years in prison.

Police ultimately learned of the women's participation in hiding the gun through recorded phone conversations from the county jail.

A search of the apartment where Anderson lived and her mother stayed turned up the loaded gun and the cannabis.

Anderson was sentenced in January to 18 months of probation and 90 days of electronic home detention after her guilty pleas to obstructing justice and aggravated unlawful use of weapons.

Assistant State's Attorney Lindsey Clark recommended a prison sentence for Thatch, who had three prior misdemeanor convictions.

"This defendant had every opportunity to stop her daughter, but she didn't," said Clark, adding that the women's actions served to "perpetuate gun violence."

Thatch's attorney, Steve Sarm of Champaign, urged Webber to consider probation for Thatch, saying she realizes the seriousness of what she did.

Webber said Anderson had told him that if she had it to do over, she never would have accepted the call from Mitchell, much less acted on his instructions. He scolded Thatch, who he said because of her age, should have been wiser.

"Instead of trying to talk her daughter out of it, she helped her," he said, noting the "growing culture of gun violence in out community."

In addition to the month in jail, Webber ordered Thatch to perform 100 hours of public service.

He told her she could turn herself in to begin serving her sentence on March 23.

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rsp wrote on March 17, 2018 at 11:03 am

I hope her daughter thinks long and hard about what she asked her to do. I seriously wonder if she will visit her over those days. Maybe it should be required.

GLG wrote on March 17, 2018 at 7:03 pm

The daughter should be in the "Graybar" along with mom.