Police Arrest Illini Forward Black After Bar Fight
Authorities say Illinois basketball player Leron Black has been jailed on suspicion of threatening a campus-bar bouncer with a knife. University of Illinois police spokesman Patrick Wade said officers arrested the 20-year-old sophomore at 12:25 a.m. Friday after the fight.
State's Attorney Julia Rietz said Black has not been formally charged but is scheduled to be arraigned later Friday. The alleged incident occured at The Canopy Club on South Goodwin Ave. in Urbana.
UPDATE: Julie Ogle with Rietz' office says Black entered a plea of not guilty to a single Class 4 felony count of aggravated assault during his arraignment Friday afternoon before Champaign County Judge John Kennedy. Bond was set at $5,000. A pre-trail hearing was set for April 19.
(Resuming original story)
Black is in the Champaign County jail and does not yet have an attorney. No telephone numbers for his parents could be located to seek comment.
Wade said bouncers were trying to break up the fight when one bouncer was threatened. According to a police blotter, a bouncer flagged down a U of I officer, indicating Black had a knife. An officer stopped him as he was walking away from the club and found a small folding knife on the sidewalk, a few feet away in the direction Black had been walking. Witnesses said Black had been threatening security personnel.
Coach John Groce released a statement: "We are aware of the incident involing Leron Black. He has been suspended indefinitely from all team activities as we await the legal process."
Black is from Memphis, Tennessee. He is a starting forward but has missed most of this season with injury.