SHELBY COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — A Stewardson man was sentenced on Thursday to 26 years in prison after he was found guilty in November of attempted murder.

Chance Evans, 23, was sentenced for two crimes: attempted murder with a firearm and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. The latter crime carries a one-year sentence that will be served concurrently to the longer attempted murder sentence, of which Evans must serve 85 percent. He will be eligible for release in 2045.

This is Evans’ first conviction for a felony offense.

These crimes happened on April 12, 2022, when prosecutors said Evans tried to kill a man with whom he had a longstanding dispute with. Evans and his girlfriend encountered this man at a Stewardson gas station on Route 32; the two men exchanged hostile words before the victim drove away.

At Evans’ direction, his girlfriend followed the victim onto Mode Road and resumed his argument with the victim mid-drive; it culminated with Evans firing a shot at the victim that barely missed him. All of this happened while the victim’s own girlfriend and two children were in his car for a planned family fishing outing.

Evans and his girlfriend were arrested later that day after fleeing the shooting scene. Although authorities found ammunition in their car that matched the caliber of the gun Evans used, the gun itself was never recovered.

In a tearful victim impact statement, the victim’s girlfriend pointed out that her entire family could’ve been killed in the incident as her boyfriend was driving at a high rate of speed. She said that had her boyfriend been killed, as Evans intended, “the kids and I would have never seen another day.” She further stated that she thinks about the incident often and now recognizes how precious life is.