Attacks on the Rise; Similar Beatings Reported in 2008

News-Gazette (Champaign, Illinois), September 28, 2010

The number of reports of beatings to white men in Champaign appear to be coming in quicker than police can even process them.

Champaign detective Sgt. John Schweighart said police received three more reports since late Thursday night.

At 10:45 p.m. Thursday, a 36-year-old man was attacked by four black males, who first asked him for a cigarette, then punched his face and knocked him to the ground.

Mike Sola, 50, was attacked in the 1100 block of Crescent Drive about 9:30 p.m. Friday from behind by at least two black males as he left a high school football game.

And about 12:45 a.m. Saturday, a 20-year-old Rantoul man was attacked by two black men in the 700 block of South Sixth Street.

“They all appear to be random,” Schweighart said. {snip}

Schweighart said the similarities in the attacks and the race of the attackers and the victims tie the cases together. {snip}

“Geographically, we can’t even map this. It covers from one end of the city to the other,” he said.

{snip}

It was late August when police went public asking for help in catching the attackers, but a Jerseyville woman who contacted The News-Gazette after reading of recent attacks said her son was the victim of two similar attacks in 2008.

Joy Molloy, 58, said her 22-year-old son was walking with a friend in January 2008 on Daniel Street when he was attacked without provocation by several black men.

{snip}

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