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REPORT: Men Plead Guilty In Batavia Sculpture Damage Case, Each To Pay Thousands

Three men in their 40s, two of whom are from Batavia, admit to knocking over the "Self-Made Man" sculpture located downtown. The 750-lb. sculpture was found toppled off its base April 24, Easter Sunday.

Three men recently pleaded guilty to damaging a piece of art located in downtown Batavia.

The three men admitted their role in knocking over the "Self-Made Man" bronze sculpture this spring. A Kane County judge accepted their guilty pleas on Monday, the Daily Herald reports.

The men are:

  • Theodore R. Bittner, 45, of Batavia
  • Thomas E. Bittner, 44, of Batavia
  • Steve L. Piron, 44, of Sandwich, IL

The 750-lb. sculpture was located at the southeast corner of River and State streets in downtown Batavia. The sculpture off its base early in the morning on April 24.

Each of the three men will pay the following fines and restitution, according to the Daily Herald's story:

  • $4,900 for the
  • $1,167 for police costs
  • $300 in court fees and fines

The men initially received felony charges of Criminal Damage to Government Supported Property, but the charges were later reduced.

Cathy Cavins, the attorney representing the three men, subpoenaed MIC Inc. for records about the statue's installation, maintenance and any repairs completed since it was placed in Batavia 15 years ago.

from earlier this year suggested the materials and methods used to secure the statue to the base "may constitute evidence that may tend to negate the defendant's guilt."

announced on May 4 they had , related to the vandalizing of the "Self-Made Man" sculpture.

Officials planned to for repairs. The sculpture's creator, Bobbie Carlyle, told Batavia Patch that the "Self-Made Man" was .

Charles Menchaca November 01, 2011 at 02:36 PM
Hi Forrest, Thanks for your comment. I added information about what the Bittners and Piron's attorney subpoenaed regarding the installation and upkeep of the statue. The story above was published with a link to the Daily Herald's report, which has quotes and more information about the attorney's evidence. Thanks, Charles Menchaca Editor, Batavia Patch
CrankyCub November 01, 2011 at 03:14 PM
Give me a break Forrest. These men committed vandalism to a public statue and deserve any and all punishment they get for it. It's time for people who commit crimes to be held responsible for their actions. It doesn't matter. That statue wasn't in bad condition or not properly installed. Anyone who was down in that area knows that. These men decided it was funny to destroy something and got caught. Trying to blame the city and/or make it seem like they were doing a public service is really disgusting. Do the crime and pay the fine and stop whining or crying about it. They made that choice.
Jim J November 01, 2011 at 08:22 PM
Seems the defense would have us believe it really should be called "self-not-made-very-well man".
thefunkychicken November 02, 2011 at 12:28 AM
Cranky .. right on.
NP November 03, 2011 at 06:43 PM
When I read the headline on this report I was thinking it would be someone in their early 20's. When I opened it up, I could not believe these guys were in their 40's...really? They should be ashamed of theirselves!

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