Ex-football player sentenced to 43 days in prison

By David Gonzalez

Former University football player Erique Robertson pleaded guilty Thursday afternoon to one charge of unlawful use of a firearm, a class 4 felony, stemming from a January incident.

Robertson, a sophomore, was sentenced to 43 days in a county correctional facility and 24 months probation. He was also ordered to pay all court fees and surrender the firearm. Robertson has served one day in jail already. The Maple Heights, Ohio, native will serve his probation in Ohio.

Team spokesperson Cassie Arner said Robertson had been off the team’s roster for some time.

Robertson was suspended from the team following the incident but had remained on the Illinois roster.

Arner was not sure of the specific date Robertson was officially removed from the team.

If a University student is accused of violating the student code, the case is referred to a student and faculty panel to determine what sanctions would be appropriate from an institutional perspective, Dean of Students Bill Riley said in an e-mail.

Riley could not comment on the status of an individual student due to confidentiality requirements of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

In January, three witnesses saw Robertson, 19, fire two shots near Club E’llusions, 207 W. Clark St., Champaign, from a .32-caliber revolver. A nearby police unit heard the gunshots and saw muzzle flashes coming from the bar. Robertson was holding the firearm at waist level and was attempting to conceal it in his pants. Robertson struggled with the officers on scene and tried to conceal the firearm under a vehicle in the parking lot.

Robertson was also charged with one count of reckless discharge of a firearm and two counts of unlawful use of a firearm, but the reckless discharge charge was dropped along with the second count of unlawful use of a firearm.

Daniel Johnson and Kathleen Foody contributed to this report