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Archive for January 13th, 2012

Jury finds Spring Valley man guilty of cocaine charges

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

Many years in prison awaits a building owner whose been found guilty of selling cocaine.  A jury Friday convicted Alejandro Arteaga of Spring Valley on three counts in La Salle County.

Prosecutors say Arteaga sold cocaine while at the Walmart Super Center in Peru and at the Peru Holiday Inn in March 2010.  That month, officers searched his building which included a western store across from the Peru Municipal Building.

He’ll been sentenced in La Salle County on March 2.  He had earlier been convicted of similar charges in Bureau County where he’ll be sentenced Wednesday.

Arteaga faces anywhere from 6 to 40 years in prison on the three separate charges.

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Crews repairing sinkhole on Canal Street in La Salle

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

Hitting a pothole is rough; hitting a sinkhole is destructive.  A sinkhole that started off small at Canal and Marquette Streets in La Salle is being repaired.

Barricades were surrounding the hole that grew to be several feet wide.  Public Works Superintendent Sam McNeilly says the sinkhole was caused by the failure of a storm sewer line that goes under the tracks and discharges into the canal.  A box culvert was also rotting away.

A crew with Performance Pipeline has inserted a liner into the pipe and still need to fill the cavity.

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Snow Collapses Building In Ottawa

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

Yesterday’s snow was enough to destroy a building belonging to Clover Technologies.

Ottawa firefighters and police went to Clover Technologies at 1:30am Friday as alarms were going off at the business.  They eventually found that snow collapsed the roof of an outbuilding on the property.  The collapse damaged a sprinkler line which sent water into the main building.

Just under four inches fell Thursday at the AM 1220 WLPO studios in Oglesby.  The National Weather Service says one observer in McNabb measured 3.5 inches.

Snowfall amounts across northern Illinois range from 3 to 6 inches.

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Prison Time For School Construction Site Thief

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

One of two cousins charged with stealing from the Central School construction site last year is off to prison.

Brian Reynolds of Ottawa pled guilty yesterday to burglarizing the school and a home and was given four years in prison.  As part of his plea deal, he’s agreeing to testify against his co-defendant and cousin Troy Reynolds of La Salle.

The pair was arrested in September for stealing a host of construction equipment from the Central School site including two generators.  Reynolds has to pay restitution to Vissering Construction since the stolen property belonged to Vissering.

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Ottawa Lawyer Thrown Off Primary Ballot

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

A primary election race to fill a judge vacancy in La Salle County is no longer.

Democrat lawyers Anita Kopko and Joseph Navarro of Ottawa are both running to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge James Lanuti.  Kopko filed an objection saying Navarro should be taken off the primary ballot because he didn’t abide by a state elections rule.  The state electoral board agrees with Kopko and upheld her objection.

Kopko says Navarro didn’t file what’s called a Statement of Economic Interests with the Illinois Secretary of State.  Navarro plans to run now as an independent.

Troy Holland of Mendota is running as a Republican in the court rate.

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Environmental Group Lashes Out Against Sand Mine Approval

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

An environmental watchdog group says “the fight to protect Starved Rock from an open pit mine is far from over”

The Sierra Club says it’s very disappointed in the La Salle County Board’s decision to approve a sand mine operation just east of Starved Rock State Park.  Illinois Sierra Club Director Jack Darin says it has put Starved Rock at risk and there are many places to mine sand but only one Starved Rock.

The group fears the sand mine will threaten springs and marshlands within the park with water pollution.

The club plans to appeal its case to the DNR which still has to okay permits before Mississippi Sand can start mining.

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Still No Official Cause Of Seneca Marina Fire

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

The investigation continues into an early morning fire that burned 18 boats at the Spring Brook Marina in Seneca.

Seneca Fire Chief Jerry Sears says four boats were on fire when firefighters arrived on the scene just after 1 a.m. Thursday. Sears says another 14 boats caught fire within minutes.

Firefighters spent about four hours fighting the blaze at the marina, located on the Illinois River southwest of Seneca. Sears says the combination of fiberglass and diesel fuel made the fire difficult  to put out.

Nobody was hurt in the blaze. Investigators are trying to determine what caused it.

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Latest Road Condition Report

Posted by wlpo on January 13, 2012

The plows are on the roads this morning.

While the snowfall has stopped, it’s still a bit slippery on area roadways.  The Illinois Department of Transportation is saying that all interstates from the Wisconsin to south of Springfield all are covered with patches of snow and ice.

IDOT is saying to allow extra travel time because of ongoing blowing and drifting snow.

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