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URBANA — Two boys were ordered held in the Juvenile Detention Center on Wednesday after a judge heard probable cause that they robbed another boy of his cellphone at gunpoint.

Assistant State’s Attorney Alex Boyd said the 13-year-old Urbana boy and his 12-year-old co-defendant from Champaign were charged Wednesday with aggravated robbery after Urbana police learned that the gun they used was a BB gun.

Boyd said the boys and their 14-year-old victim were all at the Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., about 6 p.m. Tuesday when the boys approached the victim and demanded his cellphone.

When he refused to hand it over, one of the boys pulled out a gun and showed him while the other took the phone from the victim’s pocket. The robbers then ran off.

Boyd said the victim’s mother picked him up shortly after and, upon learning what had happened, she and her son spotted the two youths at a nearby gas station at Lincoln Avenue and Green Street. The mother confronted the pair and got her son’s phone back, then called police, who found the two walking behind a house in that area.

Police also found the BB gun, Boyd said.

Judge Tom Difanis found that it was a matter of “immediate and urgent necessity” that the boys be held pending a Feb. 20 court hearing.


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).