Belleville man accused of attacking probation officer

News-DemocratAugust 16, 2013 


A Belleville man is facing new felony charges on Friday after police said he attacked his probation officer and had ammunition in his pocket.

Tyron L. Howard, 34, of 125 Chevy Chase Dr. in Belleville, was charged with aggravated assault and possession of ammunition by a felon. He is being held in the St. Clair County Jail in lieu of $250,000 bail.

Belleville police were called to 11 W. Washington about 10:47 a.m. on Wednesday to respond to a fight, according to the police report.

St. Clair County Probation Officer Eugene Jones told the officers that Howard, one of his probationers, was being loud and disruptive, according to the report, but left the building.

Jones, 48, went outside the to the parking lot a short time later, he told the officers, and Howard came around the corner of the parking garage and attacked him. Jones told police that he defended himself.

During the search of Howard at his arrest, a Belleville officer noted in the report that he discovered two live rounds of ammunition. Under Illinois law, a felon cannot possess ammunition or firearms.

Officers went to Howard's home in an attempt to determine whether there were firearms at the house, but were denied access by a relative, the police report stated.

Besides the new charges, Howard has pending battery and theft cases. He received a four year sentence at Illinois Department of Corrections for attempted burglary. He has prior convictions for resisting a police officer, attempting to disarm a police officer, residential burglary and burglary.

On Monday, Eric Schevling, 26, of Belleville, shot himself in the parking garage that adjoins the probation department's parking lot. Schevling was on probation for burglary. He was reporting to the probation office after he was arrested for driving under the influence.

The St. Clair County Sheriff's Department provides security for the courthouse and the parking garage, even though it lies with Belleville's city limits. Security policies at the courthouse are under review, Watson said, and appropriate changes will be made.

Director of Probation and Court Services Mike Buettner said it's the first time one of the officers has been attacked in the parking lot.

"That's the type of people that we deal with," Buettner said. "We are taking a look at security, but we really do have very few incidents."

Jones suffered a broken right hand, but was back at work on Friday, Buettner said.

Contact reporter Beth Hundsdorfer at or 618-239-2570.

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