PC Neal shooting arrest

Lavante Neal, 21, of Champaign, arrested Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, on a charge of aggravated battery with a firearm in a shooting July 22 in the 1000 block of North James Street.

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CHAMPAIGN — A Champaign man wanted in connection with a July shooting in Champaign that left a man seriously injured has been arrested.

Lavante Neal, 21, was arrested by U.S. marshals about 10:50 a.m. Wednesday at a home in the 600 block of Alabama Avenue in Champaign. He was booked into the jail about 11:20 a.m. for aggravated battery with a firearm.

Neal had been charged with that Class X felony offense on July 22 and a warrant issued that same day for his arrest, carrying a bond of $750,000.

The charge accuses him of shooting a 35-year-old man about 5 p.m. in the 1000 block of North James Street.

Champaign police found the man with the injury to his abdomen. At the time, Lt. Nathan Rath said the shooting was not a random act. Rath said the victim has since recovered from his injuries.

If convicted, Neal faces penalties ranging from six to 30 years in prison.

Neal appeared before Judge John Kennedy Wednesday. He told Kennedy he needed time to hire his own attorney and was told to be back in court Sept. 18 with a lawyer.

Kennedy ordered him to have no contact with the victim.


Mary Schenk is a reporter covering police, courts and breaking news at The News-Gazette. Her email is mschenk@news-gazette.com, and you can follow her on Twitter (@schenk).