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Article updated: 7/30/2013 2:53 PM

Naperville man gets jail for putting firework at neighbor's door

Mark A. Hoen

Mark A. Hoen

 
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A Naperville man has been sentenced to 60 days in jail and two years of probation for setting off a firework at a neighbor's front door, authorities said Tuesday.

Mark Hoen, 23, also must pay about $4,400 in restitution for the September 2012 blast, which damaged two doors at the home on the 300 block of Prairie Knoll Drive.

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Hoen, who lives about a block south of the victims, was charged in January after an extensive investigation by Naperville police.

Authorities said he set off the device -- described in court records as an "aerial mortar firework" -- about 3:30 a.m. Sept. 30 as a family slept inside. No one was injured.

The victims weren't acquainted with Hoen and there was no clear evidence of a motive, authorities said.

Hoen's defense attorney, Terry Ekl, said Tuesday the device was "more like a firecracker" and similar to an M-80. He said it caused significant damage because of its placement between two doors.

"This was a situation where Mark had been drinking with some friends and did a stupid thing," Ekl said.

A woman who lives at the home that was damaged declined to comment on the case when reached by phone.

Ekl described the family as "very understanding."

"They're wonderful people," he said. "They wanted to make sure Mark got help for his drinking."

Hoen pleaded guilty in February to criminal damage to property, a felony, and was sentenced Monday by DuPage County Judge George Bakalis. Prosecutors dropped a more serious charge of residential arson.

As a condition of his sentence, Hoen may have no contact with the victims.

His jail term begins Aug. 7.

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