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Archive for June, 2015

Woman charged with aggravated battery, public intoxication at Oglesby City Hall

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2015

An Oglesby woman is in trouble after causing quite the disturbance at the Oglesby City Hall.

Dixie Jakse was arrested around four Monday afternoon at the Oglesby City Hall. She was charged with aggravated battery to a police officer, disorderly conduct, resisting a police officer, and public intoxication.

Jakse was taken to the La Salle County Jail.

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Former Jerry Springer security guard latest to take up Mesarchik case

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2015

The story of an unsolved murder in Streator made daytime television.

The mother and sister of Dalton Mesarchik appeared yesterday on the “Steve Wilkos Show”. The title of the episode was “Are They Capable of Killing Their Own Brother”.

The seven-year-old Mesarchik was found dead in the Vermillion River twelve years ago. His mom and sister went on the show to try and dispel rumors that Dalton’s sister Deana killed her younger brother.

There is still a $50,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of Mesarchik’s murderer.

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Valley Photo owners ready to retire, ending an era

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2015

A staple in the Illinois Valley will close its doors August 15th.

Mike and Sheila Campbell are ready to retire which means Valley Photo in Spring Valley will be retired with them. The business got its start 47 years ago when Mike Campbell was 18 and processed sports films at MCJH Studios in Spring Valley. Eventually the business became Valley News before being renamed Valley Photo in 2000.

The store has four employees.

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Early morning fire call to the Dayton Ridge Golf Course clubhouse

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2015

It’s a beautiful day for golf and the morning got off to a wild start at Dayton Ridge Golf Course in Ottawa.

La Salle County deputies and Wallace firefighters were called to the golf course just after 7 Tuesday morning for a fire inside the bar area. Turns out a basket of towels and work gloves on top of the bar caught fire.

Deputies think the materials were washed and dried last night but had oil residue on them which caused the gloves and towels to smolder overnight and finally self-ignite this morning.

There was only a small amount of damage to the bar.

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“American Pickers” planning a summer stop in Hennepin

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2015

Are you a fan of the History Channel show “American Pickers”? The show is looking for forgotten relics in Hennepin.

Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz are filming episodes this summer and plan on making a stop in Hennepin. The “American Pickers” are looking for interesting characters with interesting and unique items.

If you have a large collection or want to refer someone to Wolfe or Fritz, call 855-old-rust.

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Well known name in the Illinois Valley fills vacancy on L-P board

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2015

The La Salle-Peru Board of Education picked someone with plenty of experience helping others when filling a vacancy on the board.

Carol Alcorn, the executive director of the Illinois Valley PADS homeless shelter, is the newest board member. She was picked out of six final applicants who were each interviewed by the board Monday night. She’ll be officially sworn in during a special meeting July 7th.

Alcorn replaces Jim Quesse, a 10-year board member who resigned in May due to time constraints with work.

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Plans move ahead for regional dispatch center despite grant uncertainty

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2015

The future of a regional 9-1-1 dispatch center for the Illinois Valley is one of many things being held up because of Illinois’ budget issues.

Under former governor Pat Quinn, the state awarded a $1.5 million grant to build a regional dispatch center near Illinois Valley Community College. However Peru Police Chief Doug Bernabei says no dirt will move on the building until the current governor unfreezes grants.

While they wait for the grant, Bernabei says the cities are taking care of all the leg work in creating a regional dispatch center. Monday night the Peru City Council agreed to add Mendota and Bureau County to the consolidated dispatch center, joining Peru, La Salle and Oglesby.

Bernabei says if the construction grant is approved soon, they could potentially get building the center early next year. If the grant goes away, plan B could be asking taxpayers to foot the bill.

Governor Bruce Rauner Monday signed a bill that requires consolidation of dispatch centers where each 9-1-1 center can’t serve a population under 25,000. The law takes effect in July of 2017.

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IVCC ahead of the game in becoming “smoke free”

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2015

Colleges across the land of Lincoln are smoke free starting Wednesday.

Last August, then-governor Pat Quinn signed the “Smoke Free Campus Act” banning smoking both indoors and outdoors on college campuses. The only exception is smoking inside your own car.

Even though they had until Wednesday to comply with state law, Illinois Valley Community College went smoke free with the first day of summer school on May 18th. It’s up to campus security to enforce the smoking ban.

Students who are repeat offenders could get suspended while faculty could also face discipline.

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New principal hired at Ottawa High School

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2015

The change at the top of Ottawa High School continues.

Patrick Leonard will begin as the new Ottawa High principal Wednesday after being unanimously hired by the school board Monday morning. Leonard comes to Ottawa from Serena where he was the high school principal there for the last decade. He replaces Mike Cushing who officially takes over as superintendent of Ottawa High tomorrow.

Cushing is replacing Matt Winchester who resigned earlier this year to take a job at L.E.A.S.E., or La Salle/Putnam County Alliance for Special Education in Ottawa.

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Two dead after crash in Sandwich

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2015

Two people died after a single-car crash in Sandwich.

Sandwich police were called shortly after four Sunday morning to 1200 East Route 34 for a single-car accident. The driver, 23-year-old Savario Simmons of Montgomery and the passenger, 25-year-old Chastin Pawson of Sandwich were both pronounced dead at the scene.

The fatal accident remains under investigation.

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