Urbana Police: Ride-share driver killed; 2 teenagers arrested

News

2015 photo of Kristian Philpotts. Courtesy of Illinois State University.

URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) — Urbana Police said a man was killed Wednesday nights while he was “likely driving for a ride-sharing company at the time of the incident.” They arrested two teenagers in connection to his death.

In a news release, officers said they were dispatched around 6:30 p.m. to the area of Vine and Burkwood for what they said was an unknown problem. When they got there, officers found the man lying in the road. He was not responsive and had undetermined injuries at the time.

The man–identified as 29-year-old Kristian D. Philpotts of Chicago by the Champaign County coroner– was taken to the hospital where it was determined that he had been shot once in the back. He was pronounced dead. An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday.

After further investigation, officers found two suspects at an address in Champaign. The suspects– two 16- and 17-year-old boys–were put under arrest. “Initial investigation indicates that this homicide was likely an apparent robbery attempt of the victim as he was working,” said police.

The teenagers were taken to the Champaign County Juvenile Detention Center. They are due in court Friday. The Champaign County State’s Attorney is pursuing the case in adult court, meaning stiffer penalties if convicted. The names of the suspects and their criminal charges were not immediately available.

Officers are continuing to investigate this crime. If you know anything about this, call Urbana Police or Champaign County Crime Stoppers.

This is Urbana’s first homicide of 2022. The city saw a record 10 murders last year. It’s all the third homicide in Urbana since December 20, 2021. All three involved guns.

Illinois State University spokesperson Eric Jome said Philpotts graduated in 2016. He was studying to become a veterinarian.

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