Fittest loser
Article updated: 12/19/2012 1:13 PM

Bartlett dad gets probation for shoving S. Elgin football coach

James J. Slobodnik

James J. Slobodnik

 
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A 52-year-old Bartlett man who was charged with a felony earlier this year after an altercation with his son's South Elgin High School football coach received 18 months probation after pleading guilty to a lesser charge.

James J. Slobodnik, of the 1200 block of Churchill Road, also must perform 100 community service hours and pay a $1,465 fine after pleading guilty to misdemeanor battery, according to court records.

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Kane County Judge Clint Hull accepted the plea in which prosecutors originally filed charges of battery to a school employee, a felony that carried a punishment of anywhere from probation to five years in prison.

Defense attorney Steven Greenberg said he was glad prosecutors recognized his client's offense was not a felony.

"You had a frustrated father who is under a tremendous amount of pressure. He was unemployed, he was being foreclosed on, and other things. He wanted to talk to the coach and the talk didn't go so well," Greenberg said. "Ultimately, I think this was a fair disposition of the case."

According to South Elgin police, Slobodnik went to talk to an assistant coach before a home game in early September in which his son was not allowed to participate in because of a disciplinary issue. Slobodnik, police said, moved on from the assistant coach and argued with and shoved the team's head coach.

The coach was not injured during the alteration with Slobodnik, who according to court records, is 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs 275 pounds.

His probation extends through June 2013, although he is due in court in June 2012 for an update on his community service, records show.

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