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Central Illinois spree robber sentenced to 12 years in prison

A gavel sits on a judge's bench. On top of that photo, the words "WGLT Courts" appears.
WGLT file photo

A federal judge has sentenced a central Illinois man to 10 years in prison for robbing banks and stores across a five-county region, including Peoria, Livingston, and Ford counties, in April of last year.

John Beck, 55, of Mechanicsburg, admitted robbing the Elmwood bank, the Village Pantry in Paxton, the Bank of Pontiac in Odell, and several other stores.

Beck also got another two years in prison for trying to escape from the Livingston County Jail. Federal judge Joe Billy McDade called Beck a career offender. Beck was on supervised release after a sentence for a bank heist 14 years ago when he committed the robbery spree.

WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.