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Archive for October 1st, 2016

Mental Fitness Evaluation Ordered for Man Charged with Violating Responsibilities as Animal Owner

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

An Ottawa man who has had a number of dealings with the court system will now be looked at by the medical system.

Judge Cynthia Raccuglia ruled that 80-year old Barney Erickson must first undergo testing by a doctor before proceeding to trial. Friday’s finding comes after Thursday’s final pretrial hearing had to be pushed back because Erickson had forgotten his hearing aid.

The judge ordered the evaluation after she still had difficulty talking to Erickson in court. He’s accused of violating his duties as an animal owner.

Erickson has been in and out of the legal system for decades, often for allegations relating to animal mistreatment. Most notably, he had 21 horses taken from him in 2011 after pleading guilty again to violating his duties as an animal owner.

The Ottawa man will be due back in court for a status hearing on December 2nd.

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Hike for a Cure and Angel of Hopefest to Kick off Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Utica

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

It’s officially Breast Cancer Awareness Month. If you’re looking for a place to participate, look no further than Utica tomorrow.

Starved Rock Lodge will be hosting their “Hike for a Cure” event in the morning. Four guided hikes will be heading out, leading people to the top of Starved Rock in support of a cure for breast cancer.

In the afternoon, the party turns to the streets. The 3rd annual “Angel of Hopefest” will be getting underway at noon in downtown Utica. The free street party will have drink specials, vendors, raffles, and live music. The festival runs until 4:00.

While the Angel of HopeFest is free, it’ll cost $20 if you’re looking to participate in the Hike for a Cure. You can find a registration form for the event at www.starvedrocklodge.com.

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Forget Your Court Date? You may be Headed Back to Jail

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

If you manage to post bond and get released from jail, you still have to show up to your court dates. A man and woman clearly didn’t get that message yesterday.

LaSalle County Deputies first picked up 28-year oldLindsay Calvert of Ottawa shortly before 10:00 in the morning. Calvert is accused of stealing from the Fox River Resort.

A few hours later they picked up 19-year old Michael Taylor of Streator. He missed his court dates for allegedly stealing from addresses on North Park and East Sumner Streets in Streator.

They were both taken back to the LaSalle County Jail. Calvert will need $1,000 to be released while Taylor will have to come up with $500.

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Food Pantry Seeks Donations Heading into Cooler Months

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

Pretty soon it’ll be time to plan for big holiday meals.  The Mendota Christian Food Pantry is there for folks who may not have holiday meal plans.

The pantry is putting the call out for monetary or food donations.  Families living in Mendota, Earlville, Sublette, Meridian, LaMoille, Triumph and Troy Grove can get help from the pantry.

They are open Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00 until 11:00

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Man Admits to Filming Sex with Child, Sentenced to 6 Years

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

An Ottawa man who allegedly filmed himself having sex with an underage girl is headed to prison.

Judge H. Chris Ryan sentenced 27-year old Antuwan Bell to 6 years in prison after hearing his guilty plea in court Friday. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors agreed to ask for the minimum possible sentence. Bell was facing between 6 and 30 years for the Class X Felony.

Ottawa Police had arrested Bell after they say they were made aware of a video back in April that showed Bell engaging in a sexual act with a child.

Bell was given credit for the time he had already served and, because of the sentence, could be eligible for parole in 2019.

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Volleyball Dad’s Theft Trial Set for December

Posted by wlpo on October 1, 2016

After missing his initial arraignment due to being out of state, a volleyball dad who’s accused of stealing from a traveling volleyball team was in a LaSalle County courtroom Wednesday.

Attorney George Leynaud pled “not guilty” on behalf of his client, 45-year old Eric Zimbelman. Zimbelman is accused of stealing an unspecified amount between $10,000 and $100,000. He’s accused of taking funds from the Illinois Valley Volley Power travel team.

Zimbelman was not in custody Wednesday, having previously come up with the $7,500 needed to be released.

His trial was set for December 12th. He’ll be due back in court December 2nd.

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