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Archive for July 11th, 2011

IVCC and La Salle team up for paramedic program

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

It’s hard to learn a skill unless you practice.  EMT and paramedic students at Illinois Valley Community College will be receiving hands-on clinical experience from members of the La Salle Fire Department’s Ambulance Service.

The city and college have approved an agreement that allows students at IVCC that have met certain criteria ride along with La Salle’s paramedics.

Fire Chief Andy Bacidore says they’ve had students from other programs before.

The city council approved the agreement Monday night.  Alderman Diz Demes says it’s a great opportunity.

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Union Planning Statewide Picket

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

Members of AFSCME are hitting the picket line today to protest Governor Pat Quinn taking away their two percent raises.

Union workers at prisons, nursing homes and other state offices are involved in the picket including ones who work at the Sheridan Correctional Center.  The Sheridan picket is scheduled for 3 o’clock.

There will also be union pickets at Dixon, Dwight, Kewanee and Pontiac.


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Double Murder Trial Should Happen In The Fall

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

A trial date was set on the four-year anniversary of the murders of a rural Seneca couple.

43 year old Keith Mackowiak is set to go to trial October 3rd for allegedly killing Catherine and Al Twardowski.  Judge H. Chris Ryan set the date Monday in La Salle County Court.

Mackowiak was arrested on July 11th, 2007 after prosecutors say he beat the couple to death after a failed burglary.  He’s been in the La Salle County Jail ever since.  Several things have delayed his trial including mental tests, DNA tests and change of lawyers.

Mackowiak faced the death penalty until it was banned in Illinois as of July 1st.

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Oglesby Summer Fun Fest “went great”

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

Before this past weekend, it had been a few years since Oglesby had hosted a carnival and a weekend of musical acts.  The first ever Oglesby Summer Fun Fest went great according to City Clerk Becky Clinard.  Clinard and a committee of about a dozen people put together the four-day program that included carnival rides, rock bands, a car show and children’s activities.

Clinard says they were pleased with the weather and turnout.  Saturday drew the largest crowd with a kid’s party in the park and a Rod Stewart tribute concert.

It’s too early too tell how they did financially, but Clinard thinks it will be positive.  She says they’ll make money from the carnival and that their most expensive costs were advertisements and entertainment.

Clinard says they’re already brainstorming about next year’s festival.

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La Salle man hospitalized after hitting a parked car

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

A 91 year old man from La Salle is in serious condition after hitting a parked car.

Joseph Mrowicki was driving in the 1400 block of Pulaski Street in Peru Sunday morning when he hit the parked car of David Parks.  Mrowicki’s car rolled onto his top after the crash.  A Peru officer says Mrowicki was sitting outside the driver’s side door when he arrived.

Mrowicki was taken to Illinois Valley Community Hospital and was then taken by Lifeflight to St. Francis Medical Center.

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Police release more information about an accidental shooting

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

Ottawa Police say a woman accidentally shot last week was cleaning the home she was shot in.

A person living at 1124 Country Oak Drive was cleaning a gun when it was accidentally fired.  A bullet went through a wall and hit 33 year old Neely Grunstad who was cleaning in the next room.  She was taken to Ottawa Regional Hospital for a non-life threatening injury.

Police say the gun was legally registered.

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Power Restored In Ottawa

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

According to Ameren, power has been restored to thousands in Ottawa.

Due to morning storms, Ameren reported nearly 4,000 thousand customers without power in Ottawa in the 9 o’clock hour.  The power was restored by 10 o’clock.

There are still scattered outages in Newark, Spring Valley, Sheridan and Princeton.

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New Trial Date For Convicted Streator Murderer

Posted by wlpo on July 11, 2011

44 year old James Alvarado of Streator will have his retrial start October 24th.

He was originally convicted of gunning down his wife Angela inside their Streator house back in 2007 after finding out about an alleged affair she was having.  However the appellate court in Ottawa ruled last year that a witness’ statement was wrongly declared hearsay so he was given a retrial.  He’s being held in the La Salle County Jail needing 100 thousand dollars for bond.

Alvarado was originally sentenced to 45 years for the murder.

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