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CHAMPAIGN — A Champaign man who accidentally shot a friend, then turned the gun on himself in response, died early Saturday.

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said Javier Sibley, 20, of Champaign died at 4:06 a.m. Saturday in the intensive-care unit at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana from a single gunshot wound to the head. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

The 16-year-old friend who was also shot in the head is hospitalized in critical condition.

A preliminary investigation by Champaign police revealed that about 1 a.m., Mr. Sibley and four other males were in a car in an alley in the 300 block of East White Street in Champaign when Mr. Sibley accidentally shot his friend while manipulating the safety on a handgun. The teen was in front of Mr. Sibley in the car.

Seeing what he had done, he made a comment about shooting the younger male, then shot himself in the head.

The driver then drove his friends to Carle but was going so fast that he crashed into a concrete barrier in the hospital parking lot while trying to turn at University Avenue and Orchard Street.

No one was hurt as a result of the crash, which Urbana police investigated.

Police found only the one handgun in the car. None of the other occupants was arrested.

Mr. Sibley had a previous conviction for possessing a gun.

In July 2019, he was sentenced to 30 months of probation and 65 days in jail after pleading guilty to possession of a weapon by a person under the age of 21 and obstructing justice. He was 18 at the time.

Last fall, the state’s attorney’s office filed a petition to revoke his probation. He was supposed to appear in court for a hearing later this month.

The shooting brings to five the number of men who have died this year in Champaign as a result of gun violence. One of those was a Champaign police officer.


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).

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