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Man accused of hitting Metra conductor opts for bench trial

Matthew John Padour

Matthew John Padour

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Updated: March 24, 2013 6:08AM

The Libertyville man accused of punching a Metra conductor rejected a plea deal Friday, deciding to have a judge preside at his trial.

Matthew Padour waived his right for a jury of peers and his bench trial was set for Feb. 27 by Lake County Circuit Court Judge John Phillips. Assistant State’s Attorney James Newman had offered a plea deal that Padour rejected. The details of the plea were not disclosed.

He faces two to five years in prison or a sentence of probation if he is convicted, according to Newman.

Padour was arrested April 5, 2012, at the Libertyville Metra station for allegedly punching a Metra conductor.

He and a friend boarded a Metra Milwaukee North Line train home from a Cubs game. Padour’s friend did not have money to pay his fare and told the conductor he arranged to have a friend bring money to the station.

However, Padour and his friend jumped off the train in Libertyville, which was one stop ahead of where the friend was due to meet them, Newman said.

The conductor, who is 60, got into a verbal altercation with Padour and his friend. Then Padour is alleged to have punched the conductor in the face.

Padour has pleaded not guilty to aggravated battery.

He also has a pending DUI case. He was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol in Waukegan on July 22, 2012, according to Newman.

Padour remains free from custody.

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