Champaign murder suspect has long arrest history


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CHAMPAIGN — Police have identified the suspect wanted in the fatal shooting last week of a man outside the American Legion north of downtown.

A warrant on charges of first-degree murder has been issued for Shoen L. Russell, 48, who is accused in the shooting that resulted from a verbal argument turning physical, said Champaign police spokesman Tom Yelich.

Bond on the warrant is set at $5 million, Yelich said.

Shortly after 9 p.m. Thursday, police responded to the American Legion at 708 N. Hickory St., where they found Darin Mitchell, 48, of Champaign with a gunshot wound to his abdomen.

He was taken to Carle Foundation Hospital and died the next day.

This is the fourth fatal shooting in Champaign this year.

Police are still looking for people who have information on where Russell is or what led to Mr. Mitchell's murder. Police are familiar with Russell; court records show he has at least three prior felony convictions for aggravated battery.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 217-351-4545 to speak privately with a detective. Those wishing to remain anonymous can contact Crime Stoppers at 217-373-8477 or or via the free "P3 Tips" mobile app.


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