Previously convicted murderer faces assault charges

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From the News-Gazette

URBANA — An Urbana man with a murder conviction in his past is being held on $500,000 bond for allegedly shooting and robbing a man during a drug deal.

Roy L. Bryant, 63, appeared Friday via video in a wheelchair before Judge John Kennedy, who explained the charges and penalties against him.

Bryant, who listed an address in the 2200 block of East Perkins Road, was charged with aggravated battery with a firearm for shooting a 28-year-old Urbana man in the arm early Wednesday afternoon. That man was treated and released from Carle Foundation Hospital, Urbana.

Bryant was also charged with armed robbery for taking cash from the man and a woman in the car with him; aggravated discharge of a firearm for allegedly shooting in the direction of the vehicle they were in; and unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon.

Having been convicted of the murder of his estranged girlfriend in Champaign County in early 1984, Bryant is not allowed to possess a firearm.

Champaign County sheriff's Lt. Curt Apperson said Bryant allegedly shot the man and robbed him of cash, which was not recovered, near his own home on Perkins Road. After being shot, the man drove off but crashed nearby. He then flagged down a passing vehicle and ultimately made his way to the hospital.

Early Thursday morning, Champaign police spotted Bryant driving in his car and tried to stop him.

He was also charged with aggravated fleeing or attempting to elude police for fleeing from Champaign police Officer Kristina Haugen, who tried to pull him over with lights and siren activated.

Bryant then crashed his car on U.S. 150 near Cardinal Road in Champaign, injuring himself. He had a gun in the car with him, for which the state's attorney's office filed a second count of unlawful use of weapons by a felon.

If convicted of the most serious of the charges — armed robbery — Bryant faces 21 to 45 years in prison.

He is due back in court June 12 and was told to have no contact with the shooting victim or the woman who was with the victim should he be able to post bond.

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