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Archive for February 4th, 2016

Sycamore Man Arrested After Two County Manhunt, School Lockdown

Posted by wlpo on February 4, 2016

A man is in custody after a manhunt that spanned two counties and had one school in lockdown this morning.

DeKalb County Deputies were looking for Bobby Varner from Sycamore just before 5 this morning. He was wanted for allegedly violating an Order of Protection. He was also described as being Suicidal, Armed, and Dangerous, threatening anyone who tried to help him.

Shortly after 11 a.m., when they were unable to find Varner, they asked LaSalle County Deputies for help. DeKalb County Deputies said Varner was on foot and headed to the Leland School. Police ordered a lockdown of the school and a protective perimeter was set up.

Later, an off-duty LaSalle Sheriff’s Deputy saw someone go through his yard in Leland. This led to them finding Varner under a camper-type vehicle behind Casey’s.

Varner was taken to the DeKalb County Jail and Leland School was let out of lockdown just after noon.

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Lack of snow cancels cross-country ski weekend

Posted by wlpo on February 4, 2016

It’s hard to ski without snow.

Due to the lack of white stuff in the Illinois Valley, Cross-Country Ski Weekend this Saturday and Sunday at Matthiessen State Park is not happening. Instead, there will be guided hikes offered at Matthiessen beginning at 9 and 1 on Saturday and Sunday.

The free hikes will take off from the Fort just inside the Dells entrance to the park.

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Search is on for bank robbery suspect in Peru

Posted by wlpo on February 4, 2016

Despite some promising leads, a Peru bank robber is still on the loose.

Peru Police Chief Doug Bernabei says his detectives are following up on a lot of leads with some more promising than others. They’re looking for a white man around six feet tall and in his mid-20s who walked into Peru Federal Savings Bank Wednesday afternoon and got away with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Bernabei says the robber didn’t show a gun. He says the robber didn’t use a note, instead he told a teller that he was robbing the bank.

The 9-1-1 call came after 3:30 Wednesday afternoon. Investigators think the robber took off on foot running east on 16th Street carrying a Walmart bag. Bernabei thinks it’s likely he had a getaway car parked nearby in a neighborhood.

Police are looking for a light colored, small station wagon that was seen running a stop sign near the bank not long after the robbery. Bernabei says it’s not necessarily the suspect’s car but they want to be able to rule it out.

If you have any information, call the Peru Police Department at 223-2151 or Illinois Valley Crime Stoppers at 800-340-4045.

You can see surveillance photos of the robber on the WLPO Facebook page.

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Representative Skoog pushing for law establishing hate crimes against soldiers

Posted by wlpo on February 4, 2016

Your state representative is sponsoring a bill classifying crimes that target active military, veterans, or their families as hate crimes.

76th District State Representative Andy Skoog says he believes wearing a military uniform should be a “mark of courage and honor, not a target for violence.” If the bill becomes law, it could add up to five years to the length of the prison sentence for a number of offenses against Armed Service members or veterans, and their families.

Skoog’s says the proposal has a lot to do with shootings that took place in Tennessee last year where 5 military personnel were killed.

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Let the voting begin in the Illinois Valley

Posted by wlpo on February 4, 2016

Going to be out of the area on Election Day? Early Voting is now open in La Salle and Putnam County.

Early Voting in La Salle County happens at the Etna Road government complex in Ottawa while you can vote now in Putnam County at the courthouse in Hennepin. Early Voting in Bureau County doesn’t start until Wednesday, February 17th. You don’t have to give a reason to vote early.

Remember if you’ve moved since the last election or haven’t even registered to vote, you need to do that by Tuesday, February 16th. The next election is Tuesday, March 15th.

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