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Archive for January 15th, 2013

Heroin Bust On East End Of Peru

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

Drug cops in Peru hope they’ve taken a heroin dealer off the streets.

Officers say they finished a 3-week investigation Tuesday afternoon by arresting Melissa Samolinski.  She was picked up on a warrant unlawful delivery of a controlled substance for allegedly selling heroin to an undercover Peru detective.  Samolinski was arrested at her home on 12th Street just down the road from McKinley Park.

She was taken to the La Salle County Jail on 500 thousand dollars bond.

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Fire damages home on 2nd Street in La Salle

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

A family with six children is without a home after a fire started by a candle.  Everyone was able to safely leave the two-story home on Second Street in La Salle Monday night.

The fire began in an upstairs bedroom after a candle was knocked over.  Firefighters from La Salle and Peru soon arrived and had the flames knocked down.  The fire was kept to the upstairs but the first floor was left with water and smoke damage.

Volunteers with the Illinois Valley Red Cross and community members were helping the Johnson family.  The house is a rental.  It’s owned by a man in Texas.

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Ottawa Taking Over 911 Calls For Marseilles

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

All 911 calls made in Marseilles will soon be handled by Ottawa dispatchers.

The Ottawa City Council last night put on file a five-year contract to provide 911 services for Marseilles.  Marseilles will pay 150 thousand dollars the first year with a five-percent increase each year after that.  They will also pay Ottawa 20 percent of their 911 surcharge fees.  By cutting equipment costs and salaries for three full-time and six part-time dispatchers, Marseilles hopes to save 100 thousand dollars a year with the consolidation.

Ottawa Police Chief Brent Roalson says the money will enable his department to hire two, full-time dispatchers.  He says response times for Marseilles emergencies will not change and will still be handled by Marseilles officers and firefighters.

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Helicopter called to crash on Route 6 in La Salle

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

The head-on crash that stopped traffic on Route 6 in La Salle has left a man hospitalized in critical condition.   Douglas Porter of Utica was flown to St. Francis Medical Center from the scene of the accident Tuesday afternoon near Senica’s Oak Ridge Golf Course.

Police say Porter was going east on Route 6 when for whatever reason he crossed into oncoming traffic, hitting a semi tractor hauling sand head-on. The semi overturned in the ditch.

Porter had to be removed from his car by firefighters and taken by a Lifeflight helicopter to Peoria.

Bruce North of Streator, the truck driver, wasn’t hurt.  Charges are pending against Porter.

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IV Youth Choir looking for singers

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

If you have children that like to sing, you can sign them up for the Illinois Valley Youth Choir.  Spring registration for children in third grade through eighth grade is Friday evening and Saturday morning in the choir room at LP High School.

The choir meets on Tuesday nights at the high school from January 22 through April 28.  Children will be placed based on their vocal readiness, maturity and experience.  It’s $64 per child and scholarships are available.

You can find information for signing your child up by visiting their website.

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Company hired for Peru pool demolition

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

           The last time a crowd of people got into the Peru swimming pool it was because of a car crash.  The pool at Washington Park hasn’t been open since the summer of 2009.

          The city council Monday night hired John Pohar and Sons to demolish the pool for just more than $26,000.  It’s been checked for asbestos and anything of value has been scrapped or sold.

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People Of Ottawa And Streator Highly Uneducated?

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

Ottawa and Streator are being mentioned in Forbes Magazine.  Unfortunately it’s not in a positive way.

Forbes came out with a list of the 10 best and worst educated cities in the United States and the Ottawa-Streator area is listed as the 8th worst educated place in the country.  Take the report with a grain of salt however as the magazine claims Ottawa and Streator has a population of 103 thousand, which is actually La Salle County’s total population.

Forbes based its list on the number of people older than 25 in a city who have some type of degree.  Their stats show that only 15 percent of the county’s 25 and over population have a degree.

The list’s author says “for college graduates, the lure of nearby Chicago is too great” in explaining the lack of degrees.

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Route 89 Bridge Talk Today In Spring Valley

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

Find out the latest plans for replacing the aging Route 89 bridge over the Illinois River at Spring Valley during a public meeting today.

The Illinois Department of Transportation will have representatives and information available downstairs at Spring Valley City Hall from 4-7 today.   Replacing the aging Route 89 bridge is on IDOT’s long-term construction plan.

Past surveys have resoundingly told construction crews to keep the current bridge open while they build a new one.

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Crash affects traffic on southbound I-39

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

If you were following the story of the truck that ended up in the Little Vermilion River after leaving Interstate 39, police say a 15-year-old boy was driving.

Ethan Streitmatter and his grandfather, 81-year-old James Lenz, were heading south on I-39 near Troy Grove last night when for whatever reason the truck went off the road and down into the water.

When rescue crews arrived, the pickup was upside down.  Officers say the two people in the truck were trapped but were able to keep their heads above water.  Firefighters wearing water rescue suits helped them out.  Both were taken to Mendota Community Hospital.

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Ottawa Library Honors The Twinkie

Posted by wlpo on January 15, 2013

It’s been two months since the horrific news of Hostess going out of business.  The Twinkie will be remembered today at the Reddick Library in Ottawa.

Teens are invited to celebrate the life and times of the Twinkie.  Attendees will remember the treat through poetry, art and try to recreate the classic snack.

The Twinkie program starts at 4:30.

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