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Archive for December, 2013

Oglesby men indicted on drug charges

Posted by wlpo on December 31, 2013

There are fewer than 4,000 people living in Oglesby and at least two of them are accused of committing drug related crimes.  Curt Koehler and Juan Torres Pomales were indicted Tuesday for felony drug charges in La Salle County Court.

Koehler was arrested in Peru after allegedly selling heroin.  Torres Pomales was arrested in Oglesby after allegedly selling cocaine to someone working with TRIDENT.

Both remain in the La Salle County Jail with their bonds set at $1 million.

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Park trail to be named after Andy Hurst

Posted by wlpo on December 31, 2013

A name well known in the Illinois Valley funeral home industry will be forever part of Rotary Park in La Salle.

The Hurst family has made a donation to name the trail around the Rotary Park soccer field in honor of Andy Hurst.  The 27-year old died unexpectedly in October.  He worked in the family funeral home business before his death.  A marker will be installed at the park.

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Fire damages Wenona home

Posted by wlpo on December 31, 2013

Fire heavily damaged a home in Wenona.  Firefighters from Wenona, Lostant, Reeding, Toluca and Minonk spent hours at the home on Spruce Street Monday afternoon and evening.  Even Peru firefighters provided their aerial truck.

The fire chief was unavailable for comment.

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Walnut Teen Succumbs To Cancer

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

A teenager from Walnut whose fight against cancer captured the hearts of many in the Illinois Valley has died.

Bureau Valley senior Cora Peters died Monday after a battle with the rare form of cancer called Synovial Sarcoma.  She was first diagnosed in 2009.

A Facebook page called “Cora’s Crew: Fighting Cancer Like A Boss” has well over 11 thousand likes.  Hundreds of people have commented on that page and others offering prayers and condolences to the Peters family.

A benefit account for the Peters family has been set up at Citizens First State Bank in Walnut.

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Peru Police and fire chiefs named interim public works superintendents

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

You’ll see a couple of big changes in Peru’s public works and electric departments over the next year.  The first change has been the appointment of Police Chief Doug Bernabei and Fire Chief Jeff King as public works co-superintendents. 

They are Mayor Scott Harl’s appointments.  All but one alderman, Dave Potthoff, agreed to it Monday night.  King and Bernabei won’t be paid extra and both say they’re confident they can do the job in the interim.

They replace Sean Mikos who just ended a brief employment as the public works superintendent and city engineer.  Mikos was the first in-house engineer in years and Harl says he’s not sure if they will hire another one.

Harl says they need to begin looking for a new superintendent while keeping in mind they will soon need to hire a new electric department superintendent.  Current department head Jim Potthoff is retiring next summer.  Harl says the search for an electrical engineer is going to be tough because of the pay and the scarcity of people going into the field.

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New Loves Truck Stop In Oglesby Delayed By The Weather

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

Mother Nature is keeping you from enjoying Hardees a month later than first hoped in Oglesby.

Oglesby Mayor Don Finley says February 6th is the new projected opening date of the Love’s Travel Stop that will include a Hardees.  Initially the truck stop was going to open next month.

A large sign was put up yesterday that has the Love’s and Hardee’s logos along with a message saying “open soon”.

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Casey’s General Store Moving Across The Street In La Salle

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

The Casey’s in La Salle is moving.

The La Salle City Council approved zoning variances Monday night paving the way for Casey’s to move across the street from where they’re at right now along 5th Street.  Construction on the more modern and larger Casey’s is expected to start in the spring and will mean demolishing an old church and a couple homes and garages.

When it’s finished next year, the new La Salle Casey’s will have more parking, more gas pumps and an expanded kitchen.  The current store will be up for sale.

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State police say they’re ready for concealed carry

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

     CHICAGO (AP) – Illinois State Police say they’re ready to begin processing applications from residents who want to carry concealed weapons.

      Applications will be available beginning Sunday on the ISP website, though applicants will need to do some preparatory work.

      They must obtain an electronic identification. They’ll also need a valid driver’s license or state ID, a firearm owner’s identification card, addresses of every place they’ve lived for 10 years and proof they’ve undergone firearms training with a licensed instructor.

      Fingerprints may be submitted electronically to expedite the process, though they’re not required.

      State police have 30 days to conduct criminal background checks on all applicants. Local law enforcement also may object to applications.

      Illinois earlier this year became the last state in the nation to approve public possession of a concealed weapon.

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IVCH Acting As A Warming Center

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

Need an escape from the cold?  Illinois Valley Community Hospital is willing to help keep you warm.

The IVCH cafeteria is open around the clock to serve as a warming center.  If you show up after 8 o’clock, you can still get in using the ER entrance.

Cold temperatures this week could quickly lead to hypothermia if you’re exposed for too long.

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La Salle County Gets Money To Keep People Out Of Prison

Posted by wlpo on December 30, 2013

What do you think is the solution for prison overcrowding in Illinois?  The state is handing out grants to try and keep non-violent offenders out of prison.

The 13th Judicial Circuit Probation and Court Services of La Salle County is getting a $281,000 grant to provide therapy and other alternatives to prison.  In exchange for the grant, probation and court officials have to reduce the number of non-violent offenders going to prison by at least 25%.

State officials say taxpayers can save around $17,000 by having a non-violent offender go thru court supervision instead of being in prison.

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