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updated: 12/20/2012 3:14 PM

Wayne man acquitted of beating at underage drinking party

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The last of three men charged with beating a Glendale Heights man at an underage drinking party in August 2011 was acquitted Thursday by a DuPage County judge.

Judge George Bakalis found Tom Randich, 21, of Wayne, not guilty of aggravated battery. Randich's brother Jake, 19, was acquitted by Bakalis in July. Charges against a third co-defendant, Michael Mungovan, 21, of Bartlett, were dismissed last year.

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The trio had been accused of attacking Christopher Phillips at party at the West Chicago-area home of one of Phillips' co-workers. Phillips, then 19, told police he was talking to the younger Randich's girlfriend when he was struck from behind and then punched and kicked while he was down.

Phillips had five teeth knocked out and his jaw broken, but a medical exam found no other injuries to his body. The defense contended he landed on his face after threatening Jake Randich and other partygoers with a beer bottle, prompting Tom Randich to tackle him.

"Mr. Phillips brought this upon himself," defense attorney Rick Kayne said in closing arguments. "It's unfortunate. No one wants to see a young man hurt the way he got hurt. (But) Tom did the only thing he could to defend his brother."

Bakalis said Phillips, a College of DuPage student, gave inconsistent details about the episode and ultimately admitted arming himself with a bottle. Randich was justified in tackling him because of that threat, the judge said.

Kayne said the Randiches and their family were pleased with the verdicts.

"They're happy it's over," he said.

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