Peru Police on Wednesday afternoon announced they had picked up 43-year-old Michael Stuart of Peru on an arrest warrant signed by Judge Michael Jansz.
Stuart was identified as the man berating and shoving an older neighbor in a viral video that shocked and outraged viewers. Stuart is charged with three class-three felonies – two counts of Aggravated Battery to Senior Citizens and one count of Aggravated Battery on a Public Way. Peru Police further cited Stuart for Failure to Secure a Permit for Earth Change, alleging he had been dumping fill into his ravine without a permit.
The felony charges stem from an incident that took place Sunday. Police Chief Doug Bernabei told WLPO that his department responded to a call about the disturbance shown in the video. He said the incident was the latest flare-up in an ongoing neighborhood dispute. Initially those involved gave police different accounts of the incident and made allegations against each other. At the time, the state’s attorney instructed Bernabei not to make any arrests without independent witnesses.
The chief told us it was Monday, during the investigation, when he first became aware of a video of the incident. But he says it wasn’t until early Wednesday morning that his department was given a link to the video. And what the Chief saw disturbed him.
Stuart was taken to LaSalle County Jail and within 15 minutes had bonded out.
You may find the video's content disturbing, but you can see it here: https://m.facebook.com/SassyLynnCarroll/videos/623130481498776/