VERMILION COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — A Danville man was sentenced to two concurrent sentences of 8-years in prison for class X felonies. The sentences for Tyjuan Watkins are for aggravated battery in a shooting incident in August 2018 and an armed robbery of a gas station in February 2019.
Authorities say when Watkins was 16, he and two other juveniles went to a home to buy cannabis and shot the resident who was sleeping. The three suspects left bicycles at the crime scene which led police to their identities.
A search warrant of one juvenile’s home recovered the .45 caliber handgun used in the crime. Forensic testing found Watkins’ DNA on the trigger, his fingerprint on the magazine in the weapon and confirmed a shell casing at the scene came from the weapon.
While under jurisdiction of the juvenile justice system for his role in the event, Watkins and two others held up the Circle K, on South Bowman, in February 2019. Watkins was the getaway driver after his two accomplices stole money and cigars at gunpoint from the gas station.
Watkins led police on a high speed chase before crashing the vehicle on Lee Road. All three suspects were apprehended despite running from the vehicle and trying to hide. The evidence, a weapon and proceeds from the crime, were found in the van. No one was hurt in the incident.
State’s Attorney Jacqueline Lacy succeeded in her request to get both class X felony cases transferred to adult criminal court. Truth in sentencing means Watkins must serve 85% of his sentence followed by three years mandatory supervised release.