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Archive for May 16th, 2012

Booker and Burke will not coach

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

The season isn’t over for the LP High School varsity baseball team but from the looks on the faces of the players and students you would think they’ve already reached the third out.

The varsity team, parents, and former teachers and players crowded inside the library Wednesday night to show a strong sign to the board of education that they wanted Bill Booker to remain the head baseball coach and Jake Burke to remain boys track coach.

It didn’t work.  Tony Sparks was the only the only school board member who voted against taking away their coaching appointments.

Sparks says it was a tough thing.  He says he’s only one board member and he didn’t agree.  He says he felt strongly about keeping them as coaches.

Superintendent Steve Wrobleski says he can’t give the specific reasons for their decision, just that they’re moving in a different direction with their coaching philosophy.

Earlier this spring the board removed Greg Sarver as athletic director and just last week hired former NFL player D’Wayne Bates to replace him.

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Bike pub crawl to raise money for IVAR

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

The shiny Schwinn 10 speed has taken the place of the Harley Davidson in the pub crawl-poker run.  All you need to raise money for Illinois Valley Animal Rescue Sunday is a bicycle, $15 and endurance.  And if you don’t have the latter, there will be a sag wagon to drive you to the next bar.

Russell Virgo of Bike Works in Peru has put together the fundraiser.  He says a bike pub crawl is similar to traditional pub crawls and poker runs.

As the name pub crawl implies, there will be drinking but Virgo says most people drink sensibly or they don’t drink at all because it’s hot.  He says you can ride with friends but it’s not a race.

If you’d like to ride be at 9th Street Pub in La Salle by 12pm, Sunday.  You’ll be given a route of area bars you need to visit to collect cards.  It’s $15 to participate with proceeds going to IVAR.

Five other bike pub crawls have been scheduled for this summer and fall, each benefiting different charities.

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“Potential threat” causes lock-down at IVCH

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

It’s business as usual at Illinois Valley Community Hospital but that wasn’t the case for about 35 minutes Wednesday morning.  The hospital was on lock-down because of a “possible threat.”

It started after 9:30am Wednesday when the La Salle Police Department took a missing persons call.  The hospital went into lock-down after being contacted by the Peru Police.

Peru Police Chief Doug Bernabei says the person they were looking for was found by La Salle and Peru officers.  The lock-down was lifted.

Bernabei won’t say what happened to make them think the hospital was in danger or who was missing, just that the person is in protective custody.  They’re still investigating it but he doesn’t expect criminal charges.

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ISU Worried About More Students Dying On Campus

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) – Officials at Illinois State University plan to review the school’s suicide prevention and alcohol awareness programs after an above-average number of student deaths.

Eight student deaths were reported at ISU this academic year. Larry Dietz is the university’s vice president of student affairs, and he says four or five deaths is average for a school the ISU’s size. The  deaths this year were from a variety of causes.

Sandy Colbs heads Illinois State’s student counseling services. Colbs says officials will review the circumstances surrounding the deaths over the summer to find out if they could have done more to prevent them.

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Ottawa Unveils Police Office Of The Year

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

Consistent and dedicated, that’s how co-workers describe the newest Ottawa Police Officer of the Year.

K-9 Officer Dave Hallowell was given the honor at last night’s Ottawa City Council meeting.  Police Chief Brian Zeilmann says Hallowell has the same enthusiasm for his job as when he was first hired in 1999.

Besides being a K-9 handler, Hallowell is a patrol officer and takes the lead on tracking sex offenders.

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Area Prison Warden In Trouble

Posted by wlpo on May 16, 2012

PONTIAC, Ill. (AP) – The acting warden at Pontiac  Correctional Center is on leave pending an investigation.

Stacey Solano of the Illinois Department of Corrections says a special prosecutor will handle the case against Pontiac’s acting warden, Randy Pfister. But Solano, officials at the prison and the Livingston County state’s attorney’s office won’t say anything more.

Illinois State Police arrested Pfister on Thursday on suspicion of unlawful restraint, but he hasn’t been charged with a crime.

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