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Decade-old mob action case set for bench trial in McHenry County

Francisco Palencia

A decade-old case against a Crystal Lake man charged with mob action after allegedly hitting and kicking a man needs to move forward, McHenry County Judge Robert Wilbrandt said Thursday.

Wilbrandt set the case for a bench trial April 22, even though defense attorney Daniel Hoffman said he was unavailable that day and was the only one at his law firm who was familiar with the 10-year-old case. Wilbrandt repeatedly emphasized that the case dates back to 2011.

“You can impart that knowledge to some of your fine cohorts [at Donahue & Walsh] in the next two months,” Wilbrandt said.

Francisco Palencia, now 29, was charged in April 2011 with mob action, along with two others, for allegedly striking and kicking another man on or about the face and body, according to the complaint filed by the Cary Police Department.

Palencia was 19 at the time of the alleged offense.

Assistant State’s Attorney Justin Neubauer said it was his understanding that Palencia “was missing” since September 2011 when a $10,000 warrant for his arrest was issued. Carpentersville police served Palencia with the warrant Feb. 27, 2021, according to court documents.

Palencia also faces charges in two separate 2021 felony cases. In April, he was accused of biting a McHenry County sheriff’s deputy on the forearm and resisting arrest. In August, he was accused in a domestic battery case of grabbing a woman by her elbows, leaving a bruise and trespassing, according to the criminal complaints.

An attempt to reach Hoffman on Friday was not successful.