Former Illini Jereme Richmond has been sentenced to three years in prison. Richmond was convicted on charges of harassment of a witness after he decided that threatening his probation officer was a good idea.
Of course, it's not the first time Jereme has made a dumb decision, but hopefully it will be his last.
If you aren't familiar with the back story, in April Richmond was scheduled to testify in a hearing to revoke his probation after he missed a mandatory drug test. Richmond was on probation for weapons charges. Well, the day before the hearing he showed up at the probation office just before closing wanting to submit to a urine test. His probation officer refused him and told him she'd see him in court the next morning.
That's when Richmond got upset and told his probation officer to "be safe, be real safe" as he left the building. He then waited across the street in his car before eventually leaving. But as he was leaving he made shooting gestures with his hand before circling the office in his car before sheriff's deputies showed up and arrested him.
Lake County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Stride said he had "never seen anyone do this to a parole officer" and that he had never seen "this level of aggression."
You can probably substitute the word aggression with stupidity in this case as well.
Richmond originally committed to Illinois in 2006 while he was still a freshman in high school. At the time he was seen as one of the biggest recruits the Illini had landed in a long time, and he was certainly the biggest recruit Bruce Weber had landed until that time. He was just that good growing up in Waukegan.
He then came to Illinois in 2010 and while his freshman season wasn't amazing, you could see by his play that there was a lot of promise to his carer. Unfortunately his freshmen season featured a lot more bad than good as he clashed with both Weber and his teammates before ultimately deciding to leave school and enter the NBA Draft after the season.
Since then he's spent his days getting in trouble with the law, and now he'll be going to prison for the next three years. Which means he'll be in prison three times longer than he was at Illinois.
I can't really say I'm happy to see somebody going to prison, but I hope this is something Richmond can deal with and learn from and get his life together after his release. He just turned 21 in March and has a lot of life ahead of him still to live.
I just hope he chooses to live it wisely. He's already wasted so much potential and I don't want him to waste any more.