URBANA — A suburban Chicago man who admitted he took part in stealing a catalytic converter off a car in Champaign two years ago has been sentenced to two years of conditional discharge.
Anthony Wiley, 34, of Richton Park pleaded guilty Monday before Judge Randy Rosenbaum to theft over $500, admitting that on Sept. 15, 2021, he stole the emissions-control device off a car in the 2400 block of Chiswick Drive.
The converters are desired by thieves for the value of the recyclable metals they contain.
Co-defendant Marquise Cooper, 24, of Chicago pleaded guilty late last month to a less-serious charge of misdemeanor criminal damage to property for his role in the heist but was given the same sentence.
Conditional discharge is a form of probation without the requirement of regular reporting to a probation officer.
A third defendant, Jonathan Wiley, 32, who last lived in Champaign, has failed to appear in his case and had his bond forfeited to the county in July.
The trio was arrested after police caught two of them at the apartment complex parking lot under a jacked-up Honda Pilot, from which they were working to remove a catalytic converter.
Anthony Wiley fled in a car inside of which a police officer had seen suspected stolen catalytic converters, but when police located him and the car several hours later crashed on a ramp on Interstate 74, there were no converters in it.