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Hindu temple proposed for vacant property in Lake in the Hills

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:11:00 GMT

LAKE IN THE HILLS – A Hindu temple is proposed for a vacant Lake in the Hills property that used to be a church.

Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha Midwest Inc. applied for a conditional religious use for 1300 Cunat Court, interim Community Development Director Fred Mullard said.

The property is zoned for a multifamily dwelling district and previously was Crossway Church and social service agency Northern Illinois Center for Autism.

Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha Midwest Inc. is the Midwest organization of the BAPS denomination of the Hindu religion, headquartered in Piscataway, New Jersey. It serves as a “spiritual and volunteer-driven organization dedicated to improving society through individual growth by fostering the Hindu ideals of faith, unity and selfless service,” according to village documents.

The organization previously rented space from the village and held religious services at Village Hall for the past seven years while looking for a permanent space.

“This will give them a more permanent space that they can use on a regular basis and will give them a bigger ability to complete programs and serve the public,” Mullard said. “It will help give them a level of permanence, and they won’t have to vacate everything and take everything down at the end of the evening at Village Hall.”

The facility will be used from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday and Sunday and 2 to 9 p.m. Saturday.

There are no proposed plans to make physical changes to the property.

Events held at the temple will include religious classes, prayer ceremonies, scripture readings, dining and occasional community service activities, such as blood donation drives and walkathons to support charities.

Outdoor athletic facilities and parking lots are between the building and residential homes that will help buffer noise, according to the application. The temple will be used at nonpeak traffic hours.

The conditional use request was approved by the Planning and Zoning Commission on Nov. 13 and will be voted on by the Village Board on Dec. 14, Mullard said.


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Shootings put semi-automatic rifles ads under new scrutinyIn this photo taken Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017, a magazine advertisement for an AR-style firearm describes the ability to customize the firearm and shows soldiers in combat. AR-platform firearms are often marketed using words that emphasizes the firearm's ability to be customized and evoke a sense of patriotism, freedom and military strength. (AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane)

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:10:00 GMT

ATLANTA – The ads leap out from the pages of almost any gun magazine: Soldiers wearing greasepaint and camouflage wield military-style rifles depicted as essential to the American way of life. A promotional spot by the Mossberg brand boasts of weapons “engineered to the specs of freedom and independence.” The ad campaigns by major gun makers did not pause after mass shootings at a Las Vegas country music concert and a Texas church, and the slick messages are big drivers of sales ahead of Black Friday, by far the heaviest shopping day each year for firearms. But the marketing tactics for the semi-automatic weapons known as AR rifles are under new scrutiny after the recent attacks. Gun-control activists say the ads risk inspiring the next shooter, while gun-rights advocates insist the weapons are being blamed for the works of deranged individuals. “Guns are not sold on the basis of being just tools,” said gun industry expert Adam Winkler, a professor at the University of California Los Angeles School of Law and author of a book about the Second Amendment. “They’re being sold as an embodiment of American values.” The advertisements have become a focal point in the court case against a gun company over the 2012 massacre at a Connecticut elementary school where gunman Adam Lanza used a Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle to kill 20 children and six adults. Bushmaster has advertised its AR weapons with the slogan “consider your man card reissued.” Relatives of the Sandy Hook victims alleged in a lawsuit that the maker of the Bushmaster was negligent by marketing military-style weapons to young people who may be unstable and intent on inflicting mass casualties. The lawsuit against Remington Arms was dismissed because of broad immunity granted to the gun industry, but the Connecticut Supreme Court is weighing whether to reinstate it. “They used images of soldiers in combat. They used slogans invoking battle and high-pressure missions,” Joshua Koskoff, a lawyer for the families, told justices at a hearing. “Remington may never have known Adam Lanza, but they had been courting him for years.” Most mass shootings – defined by federal authorities as involving four or more deaths outside the home – are carried out with handguns. But this year, gunmen have used AR-style firearms in mass shootings in Las Vegas, Texas and Northern California. They also were used in the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting and in 2015 in San Bernardino, California. The rifles are involved in only a small percentage of gun deaths each year. Of the approximately 13,000 gun deaths excluding suicides that happen annually in the U.S., about 300 involve the use of rifles – both AR-style and more traditional long guns. To Erich Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, gun-control advocates focus on vilifying the weapon and not the people behind the crimes. And, he notes, the gunman in Texas who killed more than two dozen churchgoers was pursued by a man nearby who shot at him with his own AR rifle. “Here’s another attempt to demonize a weapon that a lot of Americans look to for self-defensive purposes,” Pratt said. Yet it was another man with an AR-15 who is “the one who’s hailed for having stopped the guy.” An estimated 8 million AR-style guns have been sold since they were introduced to the public in the 1960s. The name refers to ArmaLite Rifle, a nod to the now-defunct company that designed the first one. The industry calls them “modern sporting rifles” or “tactical rifles.” About half are owned by current or former members of the military or law enforcement, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents gun makers. [...]


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Manson has endured as the face of evil for nearly 50 yearsFILE - In this June 10, 1981 file photo, convicted murderer Charles Manson is photographed during an interview with television talk show host Tom Snyder in a medical facility in Vacaville, Calif. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo, File)

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:09:00 GMT

LOS ANGELES – Other killers snuffed out far more lives than Charles Manson did in 1969. Yet he has endured for nearly a half century as the personification of evil, even in an age in which mass shootings leave dozens dead at a time. Manson, the hippie cult leader who died Sunday at 83, horrified America more than a generation ago with the way he seemed to have turned young people murderously against everything their parents cherished. That horror continued long after he had been locked up, in large part because of the demonic image that crime experts say he cultivated with his bizarre behavior and his searing, wild-eyed gaze. “He had that maniacal look that was always so striking,” said James Alan Fox, a criminology professor at Northeastern University in Boston, calling Manson the most notorious killer of all time. “Manson was memorable: his voice, his appearance, his mannerisms, as well as his crimes and the ‘crazy Charlie’ act he put on.” Manson was convicted of orchestrating the slaughter of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and six other people over two successive August nights in Los Angeles. Prosecutors said he was trying to foment a race war, an idea he supposedly got from a misreading of the Beatles song “Helter Skelter.” He was sentenced to death, but that was commuted to life in prison after the California Supreme Court struck down the death penalty in 1972. The murders were horrific in their brutality. Tate, a beautiful 26-year-old actress known for “Valley of the Dolls,” was stabbed and hung from a rafter in her living room. The intruders scrawled “Pigs” and a misspelled “Healter Skelter” in the victims’ blood. To his long rap sheet, historians might add this: accessory to the murder of the 1960s. The Manson family’s crimes, along with the deadly violence that erupted later in 1969 during a Rolling Stones concert at California’s Altamont Speedway, seemed to mark the demise of the hippie ideal of peace and love. Manson’s notoriety developed in part because he played an integral role ending the mood of wishfulness and illusion that marked that era, said Todd Gitlin, author of “The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage.” Although Manson wasn’t typical of the counterculture, he could be seen as the poster child for violence that some associated with the anti-establishment movement. Gitlin said he and others in the underground press were as aghast at the crimes as those in the so-called silent majority, which President Richard Nixon had dubbed the older generation. “The country was deeply divided,” Gitlin said. “One of the things that deeply divided it was culture. So Manson was a gift to those Americans who felt that once you escaped from button-down America, you were prone to become a dangerous sicko.” Although Manson didn’t carry out the murders himself, he has managed to endure in the annals of American crime as the cult leader who persuaded middle-class kids to kill for him. “Manson was a manipulator. In a sense, he was a puppeteer,” said Jeff Guinn, author of “Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson.” “Manson would seem to be all kinds of things to all kinds of people, but nearly all of it was an act.” Had Manson been executed, he might barely be remembered today, Guinn said. Instead, with a healthy assist from news coverage, he was able to capture the public’s attention every few years when he got a parole hearing or in the occasional interviews he granted, in which he often put on his “crazy Charlie” act, crime experts said. With the swastika he carved in his forehead plainly visible, Manson crossed his eyes to[...]


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Warming to make thunderstorms larger and more frequentAP file photo Downtown businesses are reflected May 5, 2010, in floodwaters from the Cumberland River in Nashville, Tenn. A study released Monday predicts that summer thunderstorms in North America likely will be larger, wetter and more frequent in a warmer world, dumping 80 percent more rain in some areas and worsening flooding.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:09:00 GMT

WASHINGTON – Summer thunderstorms in North America likely will be larger, wetter and more frequent in a warmer world, dumping 80 percent more rain in some areas and worsening flooding, a new study says.

Future storms also will be wilder, soaking entire cities and huge portions of states, according to a federally funded study released Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.

The U.S. in recent years has experienced prolonged drenchings that have doused Nashville in 2010, West Virginia and Louisiana in 2016 and Houston this year. The disasters cost about $20 billion a year in damage.

By the end of century if emissions aren’t curbed, these gully washers will be much worse because they will get bigger, said Andreas Prein, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, who led the study.

Prein and colleagues used high-resolution computer simulations to see how global warming likely will change the large thunderstorms that already are daily summer events in North America. Previous studies projected more frequent and wetter storms, but this is the first research to show they likely will be more widespread, covering an entire city instead of only half of it, Prein said.

“We see increases that are beyond our expectations ... far beyond our expectations,” Prein said. “It looks everything that can go wrong does go wrong concerning flooding.”

With the size of the storm factored in, the total amount of rain in the U.S. South is projected to jump 80 percent between now and the end of the century, Prein said.

For Mexico, the increase in rainfall would be 70 percent and 60 percent in the U.S. Southwest. Canada and the rest of the U.S. should expect a 40 percent rain increase from current levels.

About half of those increases are from the storms being larger, Prein said.

These types of storms include tropical storms, but most of the storms studied are average thunderstorms.

“You can really think about these storms as rivers that come from the skies,” Prein said. “The largest ones are several times the Mississippi River discharge.”

Victor Gensini, a meteorology professor at the Northern Illinois University who wasn’t part of the team, praised the study as new and exciting.

AP file photo Downtown businesses are reflected May 5, 2010, in floodwaters from the Cumberland River in Nashville, Tenn. A study released Monday predicts that summer thunderstorms in North America likely will be larger, wetter and more frequent in a warmer world, dumping 80 percent more rain in some areas and worsening flooding.


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Zimbabwe's Mugabe ignores calls to quit, faces impeachmentAP photo Zimbabweans raise their hands in prayer during a Christian peace and prayer rally Monday in central Harare, Zimbabwe. Longtime President Robert Mugabe ignored a midday deadline set by the ruling party to step down or face impeachment proceedings, while Zimbabweans stunned by his lack of resignation during a national address vowed more protests to make him leave.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:09:00 GMT

HARARE, Zimbabwe – Zimbabweans mobilized Monday for a major push to oust President Robert Mugabe, an increasingly isolated figure who faces impeachment proceedings and more street demonstrations even as he ignores calls to resign. While there is a widespread consensus that the 93-year-old president should step down after nearly four decades in power, Mugabe has refused. The country has known no other leader since independence from white minority rule in 1980. The conflicted role of the military, widely hailed as a savior after effectively stripping Mugabe of his authority last week, is under scrutiny after its generals flanked him during a televised address Sunday night in which he asserted that he remained the “commander in chief” and referred to “our well-cherished constitutional order.” The generals have been involved in talks with him on a way out of the leadership crisis. While they acted outside his authority by sending tanks into the streets, they also projected deference in sitting by at the official residence, State House, as Mugabe told the nation he was still in charge. Although Mugabe’s powers as a wily, ruthless tactician have faded with age, his remarks seemed to reflect a keen understanding of the quandary of those trying to pry him from office: It would be easy enough at this stage to eject him, but perceptions that he is being illegally toppled, or is the target of a military coup, would undermine the credibility of any successor and muddy the international relationships of a new government. Zimbabwe’s association of war veterans, which is close to the military, said the generals are in an awkward position because their formal role requires them to protect Mugabe from civilian protesters such as those who poured into Harare’s streets on the weekend. It is time for the military to step back and let the parliament and, if necessary, demonstrators remove the longtime leader, said Chris Mutsvangwa, head of the association. “We cannot continue to have the generals seen as arbiters of the political destiny of Zimbabwe. It is not their purpose,” Mutsvangwa said. Later Monday, the military said in a statement that it held further meetings with Mugabe since his speech in which he ignored calls to resign. The statement said Mugabe is working toward “a definitive solution and roadmap for the country.” In a news conference on state-run TV, the military said it was encouraged by new developments that include “contact” between Mugabe and ousted Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who has close ties to the military and is poised to succeed him. The military said Mnangagwa will return to Zimbabwe “shortly.” Zimbabwe’s ruling ZANU-PF party expressed confidence that it could impeach Mugabe this week if it secures the support of opposition lawmakers in reaching a two-thirds majority in parliament. On Sunday, the party’s Central Committee stripped him of his ZANU-PF leadership post in a decision to be ratified at a party congress on Dec. 12-17. The plan is to move a motion for impeachment on Tuesday, set up a parliamentary committee to investigate the matter, and then refer it to all lawmakers for a vote by Wednesday, said Paul Mangwana, the party’s deputy secretary for legal affairs. The main charge against Mugabe is “allowing his wife to usurp government powers” and that “he is too old and cannot even walk without help,” Mangwana told reporters. However, some analysts believe the impeachment process could take weeks and would, if conducted properly, allow Mugabe to make a case in his defense. Zimba[...]


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U.S. declares N. Korea a terror sponsor; new sanctions expectedAP photo Secretary of State Rex Tillerson listens as President Donald Trump announces that the U.S. will designate North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism during a cabinet meeting Monday at the White House in Washington, D.C.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:08:00 GMT

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump announced Monday that the U.S. is putting North Korea’s “murderous regime” on America’s terrorism blacklist, despite questions about Pyongyang’s support for international attacks beyond the assassination of its leader’s half brother in February. Trump said the designation as a state sponsor of terror was long overdue, and he promised a new wave of sanctions as part of a “maximum pressure campaign” over North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons that could soon pose a direct threat to the U.S. mainland. North Korea will join Iran, Sudan and Syria on the blacklist. The North had been designated for two decades until 2008 when it was removed in a bid to salvage international talks aimed at halting its nuclear efforts. The talks collapsed soon after and haven’t been revived since. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the designation was a “very symbolic move” with limited practical effects, although it could close a “few loopholes” in a tough sanctions regime that was starting to bite in Pyongyang. He said anecdotal evidence and intelligence suggests the North is suffering fuel shortages, with queues at gas station, and its revenues are down. Still, Tillerson also acknowledged a two-month pause in the North’s rapid tempo of nuclear and missile tests and said there was still hope for diplomacy. With tougher sanctions in the offing, he warned North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, ‘This is only going to get worse until you’re ready to come and talk.” The designation is likely to exacerbate sour relations between Washington and Pyongyang that have turned uglier with name-calling between Trump and Kim. There was strong bipartisan support for the move in Congress, which had passed legislation in August requiring the State Department to make a determination on the issue. “In addition to threatening the world by nuclear devastation, North Korea has repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism, including assassinations on foreign soil,” Trump said as he announced the designation at a Cabinet meeting at the White House.  The action had been debated for months inside the administration, with some officials at the State Department arguing that North Korea did not meet the legal standard to be relisted as a state sponsor of terrorism. U.S. officials involved in the internal deliberations said there was no debate over whether the slaying of Kim’s half brother Kim Jong Nam was a terrorist act. Malaysian authorities have said he was killed by two women who smeared suspected VX nerve agent onto his face at Kuala Lumpur airport Feb. 13. Lawyers said there had to be more than one incident, and there was disagreement over whether the treatment of American student Otto Warmbier, who died of injuries suffered in North Korean custody, constituted terrorism. Tillerson said Kim Jong Nam’s assassination was a “significant event” for the determination, but when asked about other assassinations, he said, “I don’t have anything I can share with you specifically.” In making the announcement, Trump did refer to Warmbier “and the countless others so brutally affected” by North Korean oppression. He said more sanctions would be imposed on North Korea and “related persons” that the Treasury Department would begin to announce Tuesday – part of rolling effort to deprive Pyongyang of funds for its nuclear and missile programs and leave it internationally isolated. “It will be the highest level of sanctions by the time it’s finished over a two-week period,” Trump said. [...]


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Judge dismisses one of two civil lawsuits against former House Speaker Dennis HastertKristi Browne, attorney for Richard Doe, addresses reporters after a hearing Monday at the Kendall County Courthouse in Yorkville, where Judge Robert Pilmer ruled to dismiss Doe's lawsuit against former House Speaker Dennis Hastert. Doe accused Hastert of sexually abusing him in the early 1970s, but attorneys for Hastert argued that the statute of limitations had run out on such a complaint, and Pilmer agreed. Standing to the right of Browne is fellow Richard Doe attorney Peter Evans.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:07:00 GMT

A Kendall County judge has dismissed one of the two civil lawsuits filed against former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Plano. A plaintiff, identified in court documents as Richard Doe, alleged that Hastert molested him in the early 1970s when Hastert was a teacher and coach at Yorkville High School, and that when he went to the state’s attorney’s office in the 1980s to file a complaint about it, he was discouraged from doing so. Judge Robert Pilmer ruled at a hearing Monday morning in Yorkville that he agreed with Hastert’s attorneys that Richard Doe’s charge in his lawsuit against Hastert was beyond the statute of limitations. Pilmer dismissed the lawsuit with prejudice, meaning that it cannot be refiled. John Ellis, a Chicago attorney representing Hastert, argued in court that the statute of limitations would have begun once Richard Doe turned 18, and then two years after that. Ellis said that by the time Doe came to Kendall County State’s Attorney Dallas Ingemunson in 1984 or 1985, the statute of limitations had run out for criminal prosecution. However, he said, Hastert denies the allegations made by Doe. Attorney Kristi Browne, representing Richard Doe, said after the hearing that she will determine whether to ask Pilmer to reconsider his decision. “Clearly, we’re disappointed,” she said. “We were hoping we would have a chance to go forward. We’ll have to explore our options in terms of a motion to reconsider.” In the meantime, Browne also is considering filing a lawsuit against Yorkville School District 115; a hearing on that matter was set for Feb. 23. “We haven’t made a claim against the school district yet, but we have asked for discovery [documents related to Hastert] in order to investigate the possibility of a claim,” she said. “It’s our position that what happened today doesn’t forgo that process. The school district has been collecting discovery to turn over to us.” Browne said her argument is that Ingemunson’s alleged statements to her client that he would be sued civilly or charged criminally if he filed a complaint against Hastert would have reset and extend the statute of limitations in the case. Ingemunson has denied ever handling such a complaint. “It was our argument that that should extend the statute of limitations for our client until such point in time that he was confident enough to come forward with his claim,” Browne said. “Obviously, in this case, when you’re dealing with someone very powerful, that didn’t really come to light for our client until somebody else, the federal government, in fact, indicted him and these facts came to light.” Browne also is the attorney for James Doe, also a former student of Hastert’s whose $3.5 million hush money arrangement with the former speaker for keeping sex allegations against Hastert a secret ultimately led to federal criminal banking charges against the Plano Republican. James Doe is suing Hastert on a breach of contract charge, saying that Hastert paid him only a portion of the agreed-upon amount. When Hastert was convicted on federal banking charges in April 2016, the judge in the case called Hastert a “serial child molester,” and Scott Cross, the brother of former state Rep. Tom Cross of Oswego, testified that Hastert abused him in the 1970s when Hastert was his coach. When the judge asked Hastert during his sentencing hearing whether he sexually abused one of his former students specifically, Hastert said, “Yes.” Browne said Monday’s ruling by Pilmer does not affect the James Doe case. [...]


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Coal City man pleads not guilty to killing bartender girlfriendWill County investigators search the Outlaws Motorcycle Club's clubhouse Thursday after Kaitlyn Kearns, a 24-year-old bartender from Joliet, was found dead from a gunshot in a rural area of Kankakee County, according to a sheriff’s office news release.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:07:00 GMT

JOLIET – A Coal City man charged with shooting and killing his bartender girlfriend pleaded not guilty at his first court appearance Monday. Jeremy Boshears, 32, appeared on video in Will County Circuit Judge Carla Alessio Policandriotes’ courtroom, where his attorney, Neil Patel, said he pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder. Patel said he plans to file a motion to preserve evidence in the case. A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for Dec. 13. Boshears’ wife and other family members were present at Monday’s hearing. They declined to comment on the case. Boshears was charged in connection with the death of 24-year-old Kaitlyn Kearns, who was reported missing Nov. 14. She last was seen at 1:30 a.m. Nov. 13 at Woody’s bar. She was a bartender at the 1008 E. Washington St. tavern. Will County Sheriff’s detectives found Kearns’ body in the back of her 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Cherokee was parked inside a pole barn in Aroma Park Township in Kankakee County. Kearns was killed by a single gunshot to the head. Police believe the owner of the Kankakee County property was not involved in the killing or concealing of Kearns’ body, and was unaware the body had been left there. Lt. Dan Jungles of the Will County Sheriff’s Office said Monday that someone he refused to identify drove Boshears from Aroma Park Township after Kearns’ death. He said he highly doubts that person will face charges. After Kearns’ body was found, sheriff’s deputies broke down the door of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club’s clubhouse on East Washington Street and searched it Thursday morning. The Outlaws’ clubhouse is down the street from Woody’s bar. Jungles declined to say why the clubhouse was searched. “There’s a lot of details in this case I can’t give out because we’re still working it,” Jungles said. He said the case still is being investigated, and that sheriff’s deputies “never rule anything out until we can’t.” During the search of the Outlaws’ clubhouse, a white Dodge Charger was towed from an alley alongside the building. The Charger was registered to Boshears, according to state records. Patel declined to comment when asked whether Boshears was a member of the Outlaws. He said Boshears is married, has a son and works a job where he installs commercial doors. Woody’s manager Shari Depratt said in a message to The Herald-News that she had no comment except to say of Boshears, “I love that kid. I considered him my son.” Lou Panos of Hinsdale established a GoFundMe fundraiser for Kearns. As of Monday, it had raised $16,375. The fund was established to help Kearns’ family cope with the tragedy. Boshears initially was charged Friday with concealment of a homicidal death in Kankakee County. Boshears arrived at the Will County jail shortly after 8:30 p.m. Saturday, according to jail records. Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jim Rowe agreed to dismiss the concealing a homicide charge so all charges can be prosecuted in Will County. Boshears’ bond has been set at $10 million. Will County investigators search the Outlaws Motorcycle Club's clubhouse Thursday after Kaitlyn Kearns, a 24-year-old bartender from Joliet, was found dead from a gunshot in a rural area of Kankakee County, according to a sheriff’s office news release.[...]


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Infant burned during Crystal Lake cooking accident, police official saysAlex Vucha – For Shaw Media A person injured in a cooking incident was air lifted by a Flight for Life helicopter from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma center for treatment, according to a release from Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department. The injury occurred at 4:07 p.m. Sunday, according to authorities.Alex Vucha – For Shaw Media Flight for Life helicopter crew members and Crystal Lake paramedics prepare a person injured in a cooking incident on Sunday. The victim was air lifted from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma center for treatment, according to a release from Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:06:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – An infant was burned late Sunday afternoon during a cooking accident, police said.

The injury occurred about 4 p.m. Sunday in a home on the 200 block of Dartmoor Drive. The baby experienced “significant burns on various parts of their body” after having hot food spilled on them, Crystal Lake Deputy Chief Derek Hyrkas said.

“We are looking into the circumstances but don’t believe this was anything more than a tragic accident,” he said.

Hyrkas said Monday that the baby is alive, but he doesn’t know the condition.

Flight for Life transported the baby from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma facility.

Crystal Lake police assisted securing the landing zone, and the Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department also responded.

Alex Vucha – For Shaw Media A person injured in a cooking incident was air lifted by a Flight for Life helicopter from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma center for treatment, according to a release from Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department. The injury occurred at 4:07 p.m. Sunday, according to authorities.Alex Vucha – For Shaw Media Flight for Life helicopter crew members and Crystal Lake paramedics prepare a person injured in a cooking incident on Sunday. The victim was air lifted from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma center for treatment, according to a release from Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department.


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McHenry County Board members offer up IMRF pension alternative for elected officials[John Reinert] McHenry County Board members John Reinert and James Kearns, developed a proposal encouraging countywide elected officials to enroll in private retirement plans rather than plans through the state's pension system.Sarah Nader - snader@shawmedia.com [James Kearns] McHenry County Board members John Reinert and James Kearns, developed a proposal encouraging countywide elected officials to enroll in private retirement plans rather than plans through the state's pension system.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:05:00 GMT

WOODSTOCK – A pair of McHenry County Board members have put together a proposal encouraging countywide elected officials to enroll in private retirement plans rather than plans through the state’s pension system. Developed by board members John Reinert and James Kearns, the plan would offer elected officials in nine county offices the opportunity to enroll in a deferred compensation plan with a one-to-one contribution match – but only if they do not participate in the $35.8 billion Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund. The plan follows on the heels of a proposal from McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks that aimed to altogether end IMRF participation for the County Board chairman, state’s attorney, county clerk, circuit clerk, treasurer, auditor, recorder, coroner and sheriff. The county’s coroner, recorder and sheriff already have opted out of receiving pensions. Although the pension debate has been a hot-button topic at recent County Board meetings, some board members worried that cutting the pensions of elected officials would be a problem in the courts. “The County Board led the way when it decided last year to eliminate its own IMRF pensions, but state law currently prevents us from taking the next logical step and eliminating it for countywide officeholders,” County Board member John Reinert, R-Crystal Lake, said in a statement. The latest proposal, set to appear before the Human Resources Committee on Tuesday morning, gives elected officials the option to enroll in a 457 deferred compensation plan – a retirement plan for government employees that is similar to a 401(k) plan. The county would provide a one-to-one contribution match that would not exceed $8,000 a year. The proposal would allow officials to be more proactive about their savings, Kearns said. “It takes a decade of service to become eligible for IMRF – for a countywide elected official, that means getting elected and then re-elected twice,” Kearns said in a statement. “This plan gives future elected officials the more sensible option of being able to immediately save for their retirement.” In June 2016, all 24 members of the McHenry County Board voted to end participation in the IMRF for themselves and those elected after them. The resolution not only eliminated eligibility for new members on Dec. 1, but also the accumulation of credit for pensions for existing members, including the chairman. In February 2016, Franks asked the IMRF to open an investigation into whether County Board members were working the required 1,000 hours a year to quality for pensions. The IMRF could not find evidence to conclude whether County Board members worked enough hours to get pensions. Franks said the proposal from Reinert and Kearns offers a “common-sense alternative” to help right the state’s ballooning pension problem. “Lawmakers intended IMRF to provide retirement security for rank-and-file employees making a career out of civil service,” Franks said in a statement, “not for politicians elected to four-year terms.” [John Reinert] McHenry County Board members John Reinert and James Kearns, developed a proposal encouraging countywide elected officials to enroll in private retirement plans rather than plans through the state's pension system.Sarah Nader - snader@shawmedia.com [James Kearns] McHenry County Board members John Reinert and James Kearns, developed a proposal encouraging countywide elected officials to enroll in private retirement plans rather than plans [...]


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Lakewood hires new chief administrator after months of uncertainty

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:05:00 GMT

LAKEWOOD – The village has a new lead administrator. Jeannine Smith, a former Prairie Grove village administrator and West Dundee economic development coordinator, was approved Nov. 14 by the Lakewood Village Board with a 5-1 vote. Smith was the top choice of Lakewood Village President Paul Serwatka, who was on a quest to find an administrator with experience in both finance and village management to handle the village’s day-to-day business.  Although the appointment of Smith – who worked for Prairie Grove from 2006 to 2015 – was supported with a near-unanimous vote, it wasn’t without controversy. Several board members acknowledged that Smith has a great resume and endorsements, but were upset they didn’t have anyone else to compare her with. Trustee Jason McMahon said he was torn on the appointment of Smith because he knows the village needs an administrator and acknowledged her credentials – but there wasn’t anybody else presented for board consideration. “I’m concerned we didn’t get to see any other candidates,” McMahon said in an audio recording of the Nov. 14 meeting posted to the village’s website. Trustee Richard Ritchie, who ran on the same Lakewood Tax-Fighter ticket with Serwatka when they were elected in April, said he wanted to table the vote. Serwatka said some board members are not pleased that as a village president, he has more discretion than trustees in hires of key positions, such as police chief and village administrator. “If I can’t have a person who I feel is capable and qualified, and of the right mindset, I can’t keep those promises,” Serwatka said, referring to the Lakewood Tax-Fighter campaign to cut village spending and taxes. Serwatka reminded everyone that it’s now tax levy season, and the village’s levy has to be set by the end of December. “Our alternative, if we walk away from this, is to put in a call to temp agencies to get someone in here and get temporary finance people in here,” Serwatka said during the meeting. The village went two and a half months without an administrator after the late August resignation of Julie Heather Meister, who was the village’s chief administrative officer for less than a month. In July, the board approved eliminating the village manager, deputy village manager and finance director positions, and consolidating those duties into a new chief administrative officer role that Meister briefly held. Serwatka intended for months to eliminate redundancy in the village administration and as a result, cut costs. The hire of Smith essentially makes that process complete. Smith will make $138,000 in this contract, which goes through April. Serwatka noted it’s typical for top municipal administrators to get four-year contracts with six-month severance packages. Smith will get no payout if she’s let go. Under the old structure, Lakewood was paying more than $400,000 for four administrative positions that included the police chief, finance director, village manager and deputy village manager, and it allowed the village manager – not the Village Board – to hold much of the authority when it came to making decisions for the village. The village manager, who had a receptionist and administrative assistant, also had the discretion to fire, hire and app[...]



Carjacking charges dismissed against three arrested near Harvard

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:05:00 GMT

WOODSTOCK – Carjacking charges were dismissed for three people accused of taking a 2005 Chrysler 300 from a home near Harvard in May.

Genaro Pena, 35, of Harvard and Alex P. Gonzaque, 34, and Hayley Halpin, 38, of Walworth, Wisconsin, were arrested May 12 and charged with vehicular hijacking, which could have landed them four to 15 years in prison.

The hijacking charges, however, have since been dismissed and additional, less serious charges were filed in their stead, court records show. Both Halpin and Gonzaque pleaded guilty to misdemeanor offenses; however, Pena continues to plead not guilty on all charges.

Rather than serving as many as 15 years in prison, Halpin accepted a plea deal and was ordered to pay $375 in fines after pleading guilty Sept. 5 to violating the Collateral Recovery Act, court records show. The Collateral Recovery Act deals with repossession agencies, among other things.

Gonzaque also took a plea deal and pleaded guilty to possession of a stolen vehicle. He was credited for 120 days served in the McHenry County Jail, sentenced to one year of probation and ordered to pay $1,572, court records show.

On Thursday, Gonzaque began the process to appeal his conviction, according to court documents. Representatives from the McHenry County Public Defender’s Office were not available to comment on details surrounding the appeal.

Still facing felony charges, Pena has pleaded not guilty to possession of a stolen vehicle, criminal trespass to vehicles and violating the Collateral Recovery Act, court records show.

McHenry County Sheriff’s deputies responded May 12 to the 7800 block of Graf Road for a reported vehicle theft at a home near Harvard. Deputies were told that Pena, Gonzaque and Halpin told the owner of the Chrysler that they were going to take the vehicle, according to a news release at the time from the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office.

In a June 21 letter to a McHenry County judge, Halpin wrote that the situation was “a big misunderstanding.”

Pena’s next court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 13.




Crystal Lake physical therapist accused of groping patientShaw Media photo A Crystal Lake physical therapist Michael Lim, 39, of the 1300 block of Almaden Lane, Gurnee, is accused of groping patient. Lim faces battery charges after police say he inappropriately touched a patient during a massage at Advanced Pain Rehab, 7115 Virginia Road, in Crystal Lake.A Crystal Lake physical therapist faces battery charges after police say he inappropriately touched a patient during a massage. Michael Lim, 39, of the 1300 block of Almaden Lane, Gurnee, turned himself in to police Thursday, according to news release from the Crystal Lake Police Department Monday.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:04:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – A Crystal Lake physical therapist faces battery charges after police said he inappropriately touched a patient during a massage.

Michael Lim, 39, of the 1300 block of Almaden Lane, Gurnee, surrendered to police Thursday, according to news release Monday from the Crystal Lake Police Department.

Lim is a physical therapist at Advanced Pain Rehab, 7115 Virginia Road, Crystal Lake, according to the release.

His license to practice physical therapy will not be affected by his charges unless a judge were to order his license be revoked, according to an Illinois Department of Professional Regulations representative.

Lim’s arrest stems from a police investigation into a woman’s claim that on Sept. 26, Lim groped her while giving her a massage. It was the woman’s second appointment with Lim, police said.

Police issued a warrant for Lim’s arrest Thursday, and he surrendered later that same day, according to the release.

The McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office has charged Lim with battery. If he is convicted, he could be sentenced to less than a year in prison.

Neither the Crystal Lake Police Department nor the McHenry County State’s Attorneys Office were available to provide further details about the charge.

Lim’s bond was set at $1,500 and he was released after he posted $150 bail, court records show.

Lim declined to comment when reached by phone Monday morning.

He is due back in court Nov. 28.

Police are encouraging anyone with information to call the Crystal Lake Police Department at 815-356-3620, or Crime Stoppers at 800-762-7867.

Shaw Media photo A Crystal Lake physical therapist Michael Lim, 39, of the 1300 block of Almaden Lane, Gurnee, is accused of groping patient. Lim faces battery charges after police say he inappropriately touched a patient during a massage at Advanced Pain Rehab, 7115 Virginia Road, in Crystal Lake.A Crystal Lake physical therapist faces battery charges after police say he inappropriately touched a patient during a massage. Michael Lim, 39, of the 1300 block of Almaden Lane, Gurnee, turned himself in to police Thursday, according to news release from the Crystal Lake Police Department Monday.


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Harvard's former Motorola campus delinquent property taxes sold to auction companyShaw Media File Photo Former Motorola Plant in Harvard. The company that bought the 1.5-million-square-foot former Motorola facility in Havard did not pay its taxes. The taxes were then sold.

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 06:04:00 GMT

HARVARD – An auction company has bought delinquent property taxes for Harvard’s former Motorola campus. The largely absent owner of the former Motorola campus in Harvard allowed property taxes on the 1.5 million-square-foot campus to fall delinquent when he failed to pay the second installment on the $325,437 tax bill Sept 9. An auction company bought the taxes at a McHenry County tax sale Oct. 30, according to county records. When property taxes are sold, the investor puts a lien on the property that it can then hold for two and a half to three years. If the owner of the property doesn’t pay back the taxes, the investor can take control of the property, McHenry County Deputy Chief Treasurer Cindy Kozlowski said. “We need to get the money immediately to distribute it to the taxing districts,” she said. This isn’t the first time an owner of the 325-acre campus has allowed taxes to go delinquent. Florida-based Optima International bought the property for $16.75 million in 2008. It owed the county more than $329,000 in taxes in 2014. ComEd sued Optima the same year for $545,816 in outstanding bills, and the electricity was shut off. The property at 2001 N. Division St. has been vacant since 2003. Dearborn, Michigan-based Edward Harvard Holdings bought the site in an online auction in 2016 for $9.3 million. Owner Xiao Hua Gong submitted an incomplete application for economic incentives through the Harvard Woodstock Enterprise Zone for a proposed $32 million project that would launch smartphone manufacturing at the site in March. Officials with the enterprise zone and the city of Harvard have yet to meet with the owner and discuss the status of the project, said Charles Eldredge, who heads up the zone. “We have repeatedly tried to meet with them and they haven’t made themselves available,” Eldredge said. “We don’t know what his plans are at this point.” The electricity on the site still was on, and the staff have been maintaining the property as of several weeks ago, Eldredge said. “We’d be much happier if the owner was communicating with us as to his plans,” he said. “We feel we are in the dark, and as a result, we don’t know what to think.” It’s fairly common for taxes on a commercial property to end up in a tax sale, Eldredge said. “It may or may not be a serious issue,” he said. “The owner has a right to redeem them for a considerable period of time. This may be a way to conserve cash flow as he develops plans or it may be evidence of something more disquieting.” Eldredge said he had been told the owner planned to market the site as a potential location for Amazon’s second headquarters. The online giant opened a search for a site for its “HQ2” in September and has drawn thousands of bids from cities across the nation, according to a news release from Amazon. McHenry County Chairman Jack Franks is on a task force looking to bring the new headquarters to the Chicago area and said the Harvard property doesn’t meet Amazon’s site specifications. Motorola built the $100 million commercial campus in 1997. The property includes four multistory buildings, two heliports and other amenities such as an auditorium, biking and walking trails and a fitness center. Motorola shut down operations after five years and residents, officials and developers have speculat[...]


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Victoria's Secret show in China struts on despite controversyModel Stella Maxwell wears a creation during the Victoria's Secret fashion show at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai, China, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 22:36:00 GMT

SHANGHAI – Gigi Hadid and Katy Perry didn't make it but the Victoria's Secret show in Shanghai managed to strut on Monday without them, surviving a controversy over visa issues and a model who slipped and fell during the show. Fifty-five models walked the catwalk inside the Mercedes-Benz Arena, serenaded by Harry Styles, R&B star Miguel, Tony Award-winner Leslie Odom Jr. and Chinese singer Jane Zhang. Styles sang "Only Angel" and later "Kiwi." Chinese media reported that Hadid and Perry were denied visas. Bella Hadid, Gigi's sister, appeared in the second act of the show, donning blue feather wings, a black high-neck, push-up bra and topped off with hand painted leather gloves. In a show segment titled "Goddess," Victoria's Secret models donned massive floor-sweeping silk wings with gold and silver sequined lingerie — and plenty of bling. Model Lais Ribeiro was charged with the task of carrying 300 carats down the catwalk while sporting the Champagne Nights Fantasy Bra studded with 6,000 gemstones. Designed by Mouawad, organizers said the bra valued at $2 million took nearly 350 hours to create. It features diamonds, yellow sapphires and blue topaz. The show ended with a tribute to lingerie designs based on various ethnic and native origins — with models donning rainbow colored feathers and beaded jewelry. Shanghai-native Ming Xi slipped and fell to her knees, saying afterward she felt "so disappointed with myself." A nearby model helped her up and she said many of the others asked if she was OK. "That's what Victoria's Secret is — everyone loves each other and we have the most beautiful family in the world." In addition to Hadid, Xi and Ribeiro, the models included Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio, Candice Swanepoel, Karlie Kloss, Lily Aldridge, Elsa Hosk, Jasmine Tookes, Taylor Hill and Martha Hunt. Hadid and Perry were scheduled to take part but bowed out just days before the show. Hadid's no-show came a few months after Chinese internet users accused her of racist behavior. She had been seen squinting her eyes on an Instagram video. Observers said Perry caused some controversy in China in 2015 for wearing a sunflower-adorned dress while performing in Taiwan. The flower is an emblem of the island's anti-China movement. It is not uncommon for entertainers to be denied visas by Chinese authorities for political reasons. The Global Times, an official newspaper of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, published a commentary on Monday titled "Victoria's Secret models' visa denial is of their own making." The story named Hadid and Perry and said celebrities who want a piece of the booming Chinese market need to respect what it said were Chinese values. "They are lifting a stone only to drop on their own feet due to their ignorance of these issues. Payback was unavoidable. Those who are serious about developing careers in the Chinese market can draw lessons from this case and learn to abide by the rules in China," the newspaper said. Model Stella Maxwell wears a creation during the Victoria's Secret fashion show at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai, China, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)[...]


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A sauna, a private pond and more of what $779,000 can get you in BarringtonBarrington home listed for sale on Zillow: 6 Raintree Place. 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 5,500 square feet. Listing price: $779,000. Estimated mortgage: $3,039 per month. This Barrington Hills estate is located on 5.1 acres and includes a private pond. On the inside is a large kitchen with a center island, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a large breakfast room. The family room has a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace with a wood planked cathedral ceiling and multiple access points to the wraparound deck. The master suite has a private screened porch and a sitting room. The walk-out lower level has rec/game/exercise rooms and a sauna. Listing agent: Blake Bauer: 847-379-1587Barrington home listed for sale on Zillow: 6 Raintree Place. 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 5,500 square feet. Listing price: $779,000. Estimated mortgage: $3,039 per month. This Barrington Hills estate is located on 5.1 acres and includes a private pond. On the inside is a large kitchen with a center island, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a large breakfast room. The family room has a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace with a wood planked cathedral ceiling and multiple access points to the wraparound deck. The master suite has a private screened porch and a sitting room. The walk-out lower level has rec/game/exercise rooms and a sauna. Listing agent: Blake Bauer: 847-379-1587EntranceLiving room with fireplaceDining roomKitchenFamily roomMaster bedroomMaster bathroomOne of five bedroomsLower level with game roomSaunaBasketball court

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 17:51:00 GMT

Ever drive by a house and wonder what it looks like inside? Or how much does it cost? Check out this Barrington home, listed for sale on Zillow.

Barrington home listed for sale on Zillow: 6 Raintree Place. 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 5,500 square feet. Listing price: $779,000. Estimated mortgage: $3,039 per month. This Barrington Hills estate is located on 5.1 acres and includes a private pond. On the inside is a large kitchen with a center island, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a large breakfast room. The family room has a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace with a wood planked cathedral ceiling and multiple access points to the wraparound deck. The master suite has a private screened porch and a sitting room. The walk-out lower level has rec/game/exercise rooms and a sauna. Listing agent: Blake Bauer: 847-379-1587Barrington home listed for sale on Zillow: 6 Raintree Place. 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 5,500 square feet. Listing price: $779,000. Estimated mortgage: $3,039 per month. This Barrington Hills estate is located on 5.1 acres and includes a private pond. On the inside is a large kitchen with a center island, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a large breakfast room. The family room has a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace with a wood planked cathedral ceiling and multiple access points to the wraparound deck. The master suite has a private screened porch and a sitting room. The walk-out lower level has rec/game/exercise rooms and a sauna. Listing agent: Blake Bauer: 847-379-1587EntranceLiving room with fireplaceDining roomKitchenFamily roomMaster bedroomMaster bathroomOne of five bedroomsLower level with game roomSaunaBasketball court


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Trump says U.S. will declare North Korea a state sponsor of terrorPresident Donald Trump announces that the United States will designate North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017, in Washington. From left, acting Secretary of Health and Human Services Eric Hargan, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and Trump. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 17:28:00 GMT

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump announced Monday that the U.S. will designate North Korea as a state sponsor of terror amid heightened nuclear tensions on the Korean peninsula.

Trump said the designation will impose further penalties on the country. He called it a long overdue step and part of the U.S. "maximum pressure campaign" against the North. North Korea would join Iran, Sudan and Syria on the list of state sponsors of terror.

"In addition to threatening the world by nuclear devastation, North Korea has repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism including assassinations on foreign soil," Trump said during a Cabinet meeting.

U.S. officials cited the killing of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's estranged half brother in a Malaysian airport in February as an act of terrorism.

The designation had been debated for months inside the administration, with some officials at the State Department arguing that North Korea did not meet the legal standard to be relisted as a state sponsor of terrorism.

U.S. officials involved in the internal deliberations said there was no debate over whether the slaying of half-brother Kim Jong Nam was a terrorist act. However, lawyers said there had to be more than one incident, and there was disagreement over whether the treatment of American student Otto Warmbier, who died of injuries suffered in North Korean custody, constituted terrorism.

The officials were not authorized to speak publicly about the deliberations and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

The move returns North Korea to the ignominious list for the first time since 2008, when the North was removed in a bid to salvage a deal to halt its nuclear development. In the years since, the North has made advanced leaps in both its nuclear and missile programs, proving the capacity to reach U.S. territories with the devastating weapons earlier this year.

Trump has faced pressure from congressional lawmakers to relist the country amid its advancing nuclear missile program, though some fear it could increase already heightened tensions on the Korean peninsula.

President Donald Trump announces that the United States will designate North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017, in Washington. From left, acting Secretary of Health and Human Services Eric Hargan, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and Trump. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)


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Hippie cult leader Charles Manson dead at 83FILE - In this 1969 file photo, Charles Manson is escorted to his arraignment on conspiracy-murder charges in connection with the Sharon Tate murder case. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo, File)FILE- This Aug. 14, 2017 photo provided by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation shows Charles Manson. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19. He was 83. (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP, File)FILE - In this Feb. 4, 1986, file photo, convicted murderer Charles Manson looks towards the parole board in San Quentin, Calif. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83.(AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)FILE - In this Feb. 4, 1986, file photo, convicted mass murder Charles Manson reads a rambling statement at his parole hearing in San Quentin, Calif. Manson, who is serving life in prison for the murder of actress Sharon Tate and five others, said he would go to Libya, Iran, South America or France if released. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)FILE - In this June 10, 1981 file photo, convicted murderer Charles Manson is photographed during an interview with television talk show host Tom Snyder in a medical facility in Vacaville, Calif. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo, File)FILE - In this March 12, 1971 file photo, Charles Manson, with a swastika on his forehead, walks to court in Los Angeles, during the the penalty phase of the Sharon Tate trial after being convicted of murder in the deaths of Tate and six others. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and six others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo, File)FILE - In this March 5, 1971 file photo, Charles Manson arrives in a courtroom in Los Angeles, Calif. Authorities say Manson, cult leader and mastermind behind 1969 deaths of actress Sharon Tate and several others, died on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. He was 83. (AP Photo, File)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 17:11:00 GMT

LOS ANGELES – Charles Manson, the hippie cult leader who became the hypnotic-eyed face of evil across America after masterminding the gruesome murders of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and six others in Los Angeles during the summer of 1969, died Sunday night after nearly a half-century in prison. He was 83. Manson died of natural causes at a California hospital while serving a life sentence, his name synonymous to this day with unspeakable violence and depravity. Michele Hanisee, president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys for Los Angeles County, reacted to the death by quoting the late Vincent Bugliosi, the prosecutor who put Manson behind bars. Bugliosi said: "Manson was an evil, sophisticated con man with twisted and warped moral values." "Today, Manson's victims are the ones who should be remembered and mourned on the occasion of his death," Hanisee said. A petty criminal who had been in and out of jail since childhood, the charismatic, guru-like Manson surrounded himself in the 1960s with runaways and other lost souls and then sent his disciples to butcher some of L.A.'s rich and famous in what prosecutors said was a bid to trigger a race war — an idea he got from a twisted reading of the Beatles song "Helter Skelter." The slayings horrified the world and, together with the deadly violence that erupted later in 1969 during a Rolling Stones concert at California's Altamont Speedway, exposed the dangerous, drugged-out underside of the counterculture movement and seemed to mark the death of the era of peace and love. Despite the overwhelming evidence against him, Manson maintained during his tumultuous trial in 1970 that he was innocent and that society itself was guilty. "These children that come at you with knives, they are your children. You taught them; I didn't teach them. I just tried to help them stand up," he said in a courtroom soliloquy. Linda Deutsch, the longtime courts reporter for The Associated Press who covered the Manson case, said he "left a legacy of evil and hate and murder." "He was able to take young people who were impressionable and convince them he had the answer to everything and he turned them into killers," she said. "It was beyond anything we had ever seen before in this country." California Corrections Department spokeswoman Vicky Waters said it has yet to be determined what happens to Manson's body. It was also unclear if Manson requested funeral services of any sort. Prison officials previously said Manson had no known next of kin, and state law says that if no relative or legal representative surfaces within 10 days, then it's up to the department to determine whether the body is cremated or buried. The Manson Family, as his followers were called, slaughtered five of its victims on Aug. 9, 1969, at Tate's home: the actress, who was 8½ months pregnant, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, celebrity hairdresser Jay Sebring, Polish movie director Voityck Frykowski and Steven Parent, a friend of the estate's caretaker. Tate's husband, "Rosemary's Baby" director Roman Polanski, was out of the country at the time. The next night, a wealthy grocer and his wife, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, were stabbed to death in their home across town. The killers scrawl[...]


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Seal leaky ducts to reduce energy costs

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 16:59:55 GMT

“Duct repairs could be the most important energy improvement measure you can do, especially if your ducts are in the attic,” states the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).  “Ducts that leak heated air into unheated spaces can add hundreds of dollars a year to your heating bills.”

What are ducts?  Ductwork is a branching network of tubes that distributes hot or cold air to various rooms throughout the house.  Ducts are usually made of sheet metal, fiberglass board, or flexible plastic and wire composite, snaking within the walls, floors, and ceilings.  Dampers are valves or plates that stop or regulate air flow inside a duct.

Depending on the season, heated or cooled air travels through a home’s ductwork with a forced air system. “Proper ducts can make a big difference in both cost and effectiveness in heating and cooling the home.  The duct system can also have an effect on the health of the occupants through the distribution of indoor air pollutants,” DOE adds.

“Usually you see only the duct’s outlet, which is a register covered with grillwork.  A typical duct system loses 25 to 40 percent of the heating or cooling energy produced by the furnace, heat pump, or air conditioner,” DOE explains.

“Duct systems lose energy in two ways:  by conduction of heat from the warm surface, and air leakage through small cracks and seams.  Telltale signs of duct problems include disconnected, torn, damaged, or un-insulated ducts.

“Changes and repairs to a duct system should always be performed by a qualified professional,” states DOE.  Professional heating, ventilation and air-conditioning contractors can blow air through the ducts to check for leaks, damage, and insufficient insulation.

For more information, contact Dowe & Wagner, a full-service heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning company based in Richmond at (815) 678-3000, or visit

http://doweandwagner.com/

 

 


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Helicopter lands at Crystal Lake South High School to transport victim injured in cooking accident

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 15:21:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – A Flight for Life helicopter transported a person injured in a cooking incident from the parking lot of Crystal Lake South High School to a trauma center for treatment, according to a release from Crystal Lake Fire Rescue Department.

The injury occurred at 4:07 p.m. Sunday, according to authorities, but it is unclear how the incident unfolded and who was injured. Battalion Chief William Whyte said Sunday night that he could not provide any more details about the incident.

The subject’s injuries did not appear to be life-threatening, but required care at a “Level I” facility, authorities said.

The Crystal Lake Police Department assisted with securing a landing zone for the Flight for Life helicopter, authorities said.


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AP Exclusive: 4 in 5 Illinois debris sites high in toxins

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:23:00 GMT

SPRINGFIELD – Four in five Illinois quarries that backfill with concrete and other demolition waste show higher-than-acceptable levels of toxins, according to state sampling results obtained by The Associated Press. Illinois Environmental Protection Agency testing last spring produced levels exceeding allowable limits of arsenic, lead, mercury, atrazine and other heavy metals and pesticides as well as volatile organic compounds that can cause health hazards, according to violation notices disclosed to the AP under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act. Among 92 quarries and other excavation sites licensed to take what state law calls “clean construction and demolition debris,” or CCDD, the agency notified 74 of violations. Quarry owners and industry representatives complain that IEPA conducted a basic test, which revealed naturally occurring metals such as aluminum and manganese. IEPA counters the levels found exceeded what’s allowed by law. Environmentalists are seizing on the results, seeking to require groundwater monitoring around the sites, which are “reclaimed” by depositing demolition debris such as concrete, brick, asphalt and uncontaminated soil. Rock quarries often sit directly atop groundwater supplies. Advocates for tougher standards point out that toxic material that goes in likely will have direct contact with an aquifer. “It confirms my worst fears,” said Rep. Margo McDermed, from limestone-rich Will County, home to a dozen CCDD sites. The Republican’s monitoring-well legislation stalled last spring. “The protocols that were created to monitor the so-called clean construction debris in the quarries were completely inadequate,” McDermed said. “We never felt they were sufficient to protect people and their drinking water, and unfortunately, we were correct.” Regulators are meeting with representatives of each of the impacted sites, IEPA spokeswoman Kim Biggs said. What happens, she said, “will vary site by site,” but could include more sampling, confirmation testing or soil removal. Critics say the industry is self-regulated, with debris haulers and quarry owners deciding whether waste to be dumped is contaminated. Trade representatives counter licensed professionals test soil on the demolition site for contaminants, taking into consideration the land-use history. Then the load is inspected visually and with a chemical odor-detecting wand at the dump site. Suspicious loads may be rejected. The idea behind the CCDDs is to divert “clean” debris from sanitary landfills – premium, more-costly space because of tougher environmental standards designed to discourage toxins from migrating to groundwater. Dumping the same load at a landfill costs at least five times more, not counting increased trucking expenses because there are far fewer landfills, said Dan Eichholz, executive director of the industry group, the Illinois Association of Aggregate Producers. Prompted by discussion of McDermed’s legislation, IEPA sampled deposits from the 92 sites in April and May, testing them for 190 heavy metals, pesticides, volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds. Samples most often showed levels exceeding what’s allowable for aluminum, iron, selenium, chromium, and manganese. Excess[...]



Jesse Jackson’s life shaped by many rolesFILE - In this Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016 file photo, Rev. Jesse Jackson, center, holds hands with others at Heavenly Host Full Gospel Baptist Church in Flint, Mich. Jackson visited to address the controversy of lead contamination in the city's tap water. (Conor Ralph/The Flint Journal-MLive.com via AP)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:22:00 GMT

CHICAGO – For more than 50 years, the Rev. Jesse Jackson has been in the public eye as an activist, a two-time presidential candidate and a guiding force in the modern civil rights movement. Jackson, 76, disclosed on Friday that he’s been treated for Parkinson’s disease for the past two years, leaving unclear what role he will play in the national conversation going forward. The onetime protégé of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has taken on numerous roles that have shaped his life. Here are some of them: Civil rights pioneer Jackson’s passion for civil rights was deep in his DNA from his earliest days. He was arrested in 1960 in his native South Carolina when he and others entered a segregated public library. Five years later, Jackson joined King in the Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, marches. His world changed with terrible suddenness on the night of April 4, 1968, when King died of an assassin’s bullets on a balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. Jackson was with him. As the towering leader at the center of the civil rights movement, King had been a dominant presence in the life of the young activist, still in his 20s. In the years that followed, Jackson would come into his own, becoming a familiar public face and powerful orator, fighting for voting rights, equal job and business opportunities for African-Americans and an end to other racial injustices. “In many ways, history is marked as ‘before’ and ‘after’ Rosa Parks,” Jackson said after the death of the woman whose refusal to give up her seat on a bus helped invigorate the civil rights movement. “She sat down in order that we all might stand up, and the walls of segregation came down.” Jackson, leader of the Chicago-based Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, has continued to emphasize the power of the vote in recent appearances. Activist In 2014, Jackson quietly and without fanfare walked up to a memorial on a street in Ferguson, Missouri, where black 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot to death by a white city police officer. He was greeted warmly by people living nearby and those viewing the memorial. Jackson also joined protesters as they marched through the streets of the St. Louis suburb, demanding justice on Brown’s behalf and a stop to unfair treatment of blacks by the Ferguson officers. It was one of countless demonstrations Jackson has participated in over the decades – marching against apartheid; flashing the peace sign at an anti-Iraq war rally in London; joining striking Red Cross, grocery and airline workers on picket lines in cities across the nation; getting arrested for protesting at a plant where workers’ jobs were being relocated to China. Like King and other civil rights leaders, Jackson has maintained the belief that change can be achieved through nonviolence. He led a protest last year in Flint, Michigan, where a lead-tainted water crisis started when a state-appointed manager in 2014 switched the city’s service to the Flint River from Detroit’s system. The river water was not properly treated, causing lead to leach from aging pipes into Flint homes. Tests l[...]


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Zimbabwe president defies mounting pressure to leave officeZimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe, meets with Defence Forces Generals in Harare at State House , Sunday, Nov, 19, 2017. Members of the ZANU PF Central committee fired Mugabe as chief and replaced him with dismissed deputy President, Emmerson Mnangagwa on Sunday. (AP Photo)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:21:00 GMT

HARARE, Zimbabwe – Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe defied calls to quit Sunday, saying he will preside over a ruling party congress in December in an announcement that could trigger impeachment proceedings this week and more protests demanding his ouster.

The Central Committee of the ruling ZANU-PF party voted to dismiss Mugabe as party leader at a meeting earlier Sunday and said impeachment proceedings would begin if he does not resign by noon Monday.

Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe, meets with Defence Forces Generals in Harare at State House , Sunday, Nov, 19, 2017. Members of the ZANU PF Central committee fired Mugabe as chief and replaced him with dismissed deputy President, Emmerson Mnangagwa on Sunday. (AP Photo)


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102-year-old survivor reunites with newly discovered nephewIsraeli Holocaust survivor Eliahu Pietruszka (right) embraces Alexandre Pietruszka as they meet for the first time Thursday in Kfar Saba. Pietruszka who fled Poland at the beginning of World War II and thought his entire family had perished learned that a younger brother had also survived, and his son, 66-year-old Alexandre, flew from Russia to see him.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:21:00 GMT

KFAR SABA, Israel – Eliahu Pietruszka shuffled his 102-year-old body through the lobby of his retirement home toward a stranger he had never met and collapsed into him in a teary embrace. Then he kissed both cheeks of his visitor and in a frail, squeaky voice began blurting out greetings in Russian, a language he hadn’t spoken in decades. Only days earlier, the Holocaust survivor who fled Poland at the beginning of World War II and thought his entire family had perished learned that a younger brother had also survived, and his brother’s son, 66-year-old Alexandre, was flying in from a remote part of Russia to see him. The emotional meeting was made possible by Israel’s Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial’s comprehensive online database of Holocaust victims, a powerful genealogy tool that has reunited hundreds of long-lost relatives. But given the dwindling number of survivors and their advanced ages, Thursday’s event seemed likely to be among the last of its kind. “It makes me so happy that at least one remnant remains from my brother, and that is his son,” said Pietruszka, tears welling in his eyes. “After so many years I have been granted the privilege to meet him.” Pietruszka was 24 when he fled Warsaw in 1939 as World War II erupted, heading to the Soviet Union and leaving behind his parents and twin brothers Volf and Zelig, who were nine years younger. His parents and Zelig were deported from the Warsaw Ghetto and killed in a Nazi death camp, but Volf also managed to escape. The brothers briefly corresponded before Volf was sent by the Russians to a Siberian work camp, where Pietruszka assumed he had died. “In my heart, I thought he was no longer alive,” Pietruszka said. He married in Russia and, thinking he had no family left, migrated to Israel in 1949 to start a new one. Then two weeks ago, his grandson, Shakhar Smorodinsky, received an email from a cousin in Canada who was working on her family tree. She said she had uncovered a Yad Vashem page of testimony filled out in 2005 by Volf Pietruszka for his older brother Eliahu, who he thought had died. Volf, it turned out, had survived and settled in Magnitogorsk, an industrial city in the Ural Mountains. Smorodinsky tracked down an address and reached out to discover that Volf, who had spent his life as a construction worker, had died in 2011 but that Alexandre, his only child, still lived there. After Smorodinsky arranged a brief Skype chat, Alexandre decided to come see the uncle he never knew he had. Smorodinsky, a 47-year-old professor from Ben-Gurion University in southern Israel, invited The Associated Press to record Thursday evening’s reunion at his grandfather’s retirement home in central Israel. Upon meeting, the two men clutched each other tightly and chatted in Russian as they examined each other’s similar facial features. “You are a copy of your father,” said a shaking Pietruszka, who has a hearing aid and gets around in a rolling walker. “I haven’t slept in two nights waiting for you.” Throughout the meeting, Alexandre swallowed hard to hold back tears, repeatedly shaking his head in disbelief. [...]


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Many Christian conservatives are backing Alabama's Roy MooreFormer Alabama Chief Justice and U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore waits to speak Thursday at a news conference in Birmingham, Ala.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:21:00 GMT

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Alabama’s Christian conservatives see Roy Moore as their champion. He has battled federal judges and castigated liberals, big government, gun control, Muslims, homosexuality and anything else that doesn’t fit the evangelical mold. The Republican Senate candidate has long stood with them, and now, as he faces accusations of sexual impropriety, including the molestation of a 14-year-old girl, they are standing with him. That steadfastness is shocking to many outside Alabama who wonder how any voter who claims to be Christian can stand with a man accused of such acts. The answer is both complicated and deeply rooted in the DNA of a state that prides itself on bucking norms. The state’s motto – “We dare defend our rights” – is an upfront acknowledgement of a fighting spirit that has put Alabamians at odds with the rest of the nation for generations. Perhaps more importantly, there is a deep-seated trust that leaves many willing to accept Moore’s denials and discount the word of women speaking out weeks before the Dec. 12 election after decades of public silence. For some, Moore is more like a biblical prophet speaking out for God than a politician. Introducing Moore during a “God Save America” rally at a south Alabama church this week, pastor Mike Allison said his support wasn’t wavering because Moore never has. “He has staunchly defended the Constitution of the United States, he has stood for the word of God ... he is against the murder of the unborn by abortion. He is for the defunding of Planned Parenthood. He is against a redefinition of marriage and believes firmly that it is only between a man and a woman. And he is against all threats against the traditional family,” Allison said. “He is a fighter and a champion for right ....” Since the allegations of sexual misconduct surfaced, leading Washington Republicans – although not President Donald Trump – have abandoned him. At home, polls have shown a tightening race as some otherwise loyal GOP voters publicly disavow Moore on social media; GOP Sen. Richard Shelby has said he will write-in someone rather than vote for Moore. Yet Moore still holds almost magical appeal for many. Fearful of angering Moore’s supporters, the Alabama GOP has stuck with him, and voters such as Larry Gibbs are putting their confidence in the Vietnam veteran long known as the “Ten Commandments judge,” for putting shrines to the commandments in his courtroom and then in the Supreme Court rotunda. “He comes up here to the church and he’s quoting scripture and he relates to us,” said Gibbs, who attended the pro-Moore rally where Allison spoke. Even a relative of one of Moore’s accusers is publicly siding with Moore. “He fought like hell to keep the Ten Commandments in the damn courthouse,” said a Facebook live video by Darrel Nelson. Nelson said his father, John Alan Nelson, is married to Beverly Young Nelson, who publicly accused Moore of sexually assaulting her as a teen. Nelson’s lawyer, Gloria Allred, refused comment on any relationshi[...]


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Coroner: Autopsy of Cary man found in jail reveals ‘no suspicious injuries’

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:14:00 GMT

WOODSTOCK – The cause of death of a Cary man found unresponsive in the McHenry County Jail on Friday night is pending further investigation.

Preliminary autopsy findings for Thomas M. Doheny, 51, revealed “no suspicious injuries or significant natural disease,” according to a news release from the McHenry County Coroner’s Office. The autopsy was completed Sunday afternoon.

Doheny was found unresponsive in his single cell during rounds at 8:10 p.m. Friday by correctional facility staff. He was taken to Centegra Woodstock Medical Center by ambulance and was pronounced dead at 8:53 p.m., according to the coroner’s office.

Doheny had been incarcerated at the McHenry County Adult Correctional Facility since Nov. 1 for contempt of court, according to a news release from the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office.

The McHenry County Coroner’s Office and McHenry County Major Investigation Assistance Team is investigating the death.


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Algonquin Area Public Library District approves 15 percent tax levy increaseThe Algonquin Area Public Library officially broke ground on its 6.7 million expansion and renovation project Aug. 7. The three-phase project, set for a July completion, has begun with a 8,000-square-foot addition onto the northeast side of the library's main building.Walter Tanner with ACE Relocation takes apart a magazine stand Aug. 7 at the Algonquin Area Public Library. The main library officially broke ground on its 6.7 million expansion and renovation project. The three-phase project is set to be complete in July.Executive Director Steven Bero (left) and Assistant Director Sarah Murray pose for a portrait Aug. 7 after the Algonquin Area Public Library officially broke ground on its $6.7 million expansion and renovation project. Construction is expected to be finished by July.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:12:00 GMT

ALGONQUIN – The Algonquin Area Public Library District approved a request for a 15.5 percent increase in its property tax levy for 2018. The request – for about $7.2 million – is made to Kane and McHenry County library district residents. “It is our wish list to the county saying how much we’d like to get,” Executive Director Sara Murray said. “They look at growth in the district, growth of homes, the [consumer price index] and various other factors before the county decides how much we receive. It is unusual that we get the full amount.” Last year, the library received about $6.2 million, which was 97 percent of what the district asked for, Murray said. She said she was unable to say how the levy will influence individual taxpayers because “property values go up and down, and people have different exemptions.” Lake in the Hills resident Joseph Greenwood attended a public hearing for the tax levy Nov. 14 and voiced concerns about the library’s increasing budget. Greenwood said the library’s budget is increasingly growing. The budget for fiscal 2017-18 is $12 million, and includes the cost of a large renovation and construction project. “Their annual budget is rather large considering the village of Lake in the Hills’ annual budget is $26 million, so that little library is taking up almost half of a village budget,” Greenwood said. Murray said that unlike other places that can sell services, the library can’t do that, and it relies on the majority of its income from tax dollars. She added that the increase in funding will help support the $6.7 million expansion and include new meeting rooms, a maker space, an enlarged play area, a computer lab, a teen center and addition online resources for job searching and research. The three-phase project, set for a July completion, has started working on an 8,000-square-foot addition onto the northeast side of the main library, 2600 Harnish Drive. The next two phases will feature renovations at both the main library and its branch at 115 Eastgate Drive. Construction is estimated to be done by the end of summer 2018. “Our community is very supportive of our library, and we want to continue to make the high standards our community has for us,” Murray said. The library’s board released a statement saying that it is asking for the increase to keep up with the rate of inflation and to capture additional tax dollars from the new commercial and residential growth. Greenwood said that by starting the expansion project without a referendum, the library did not allow taxpayers to vote on the project. “They didn’t really seem to care about the public’s opinion during an age when many agencies are keeping their levy flat or the McHenry County Board [is] decreasing their levy by 11 percent,” Greenwood said. “It’s a total disregard to the taxpayers.” The Algonquin Area Public Library officially broke ground on its 6.7 million expansion and renovation p[...]


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McHenry County Holiday Fest delights familiesBilly Mitchell, Julie Anderson and their sons get their photo taken with Santa on Sunday at the McHenry County Holiday Fest in Crystal Lake. The event was sponsored by the Northwest Herald and Centegra Health System.Avery Grant, 2, of Lake in the Hills colors a holiday picture Sunday at the McHenry County Holiday Fest hosted by D'Andrea Banquets & Conference Center in Crystal Lake.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:11:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – It’s safe to say that Santa was the biggest hit Sunday at the first McHenry County Holiday Fest, as gleeful children lined up at the D’Andrea Banquets & Conference Center to sit on his lap and tell him what they want for Christmas. The holiday spirit was in the air as parents shopped for gifts from local merchants while children decorated cookies, got their faces painted, made holiday crafts and enjoyed performances by a magician and local dancers. The event, which was hosted by the Northwest Herald, was a perfect opportunity for McHenry County families to come together to kick off the holiday season, Northwest Herald General Manager Jim Ringness said. He said he was very pleased with the attendance, which was more than he expected for the new event. “We’re excited to bring this to the community. People seem to be having a great time,” he said. “We also like to support local merchants and people can shop at many local businesses in one location.” Phil Grant’s 2-year-old daughter, Avery, was excited to tell Santa that she wants a puppy for Christmas. Grant said he wanted to bring her because he thought the activities looked like a lot of fun. “She’s having a blast, and this is a good way for her to socialize with other kids. It’s important for kids to have activities like this, and it showcases local businesses,” the Lake in the Hills resident said. Meghan Senneke of Cary said her 2-year-old daughter, Kenzie, was having a blast at the event and was especially looking forward to seeing Santa. “This is very cool,” she said. “There are a lot of fun things to do with the family. We’re having lots of fun and the kids really like the cookie decorating.” Algonquin resident Lisa Watson of Perfectly Posh, a natural skin care and pampering line, said she was happy to see so many people stop by her booth to check out the lotions and bath bombs. “We love the community, and the community has been good to us, so we’re excited to bring excellent, affordable products that people can buy for gifts,” she said. “This event is great because it lets people shop local and support local businesses instead of going to big-box chains.” Bim Bakare, an independent consultant of Premier Designs, said she was invited to participate and was thrilled to be able to show off her jewelry. “This is good exposure, and I’ve had lots of people stop by,” she said. “This [event] lets people know what’s available in the community and gives them some good ideas for holiday shopping.” Centegra Health System also was a major event sponsor, and Meghan Netzband, community events coordinator, said she loved seeing how happy and cheerful everyone was. “This is a great way to connect with the community and a good way for people to learn more about our services,” she said. “It’s very family-oriented and so nice to see all the holiday spirit.” [...]Billy Mitchell, Julie Anderson and their sons ge[...]


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McHenry County College Board of Trustees President Chris Jenner resignsMcHenry County College Board of Trustees President Chris Jenner has given up his post to move to Florida with his wife.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:10:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – McHenry County College Board of Trustees President Chris Jenner has resigned to move to Florida with his wife.

The 60-year-old Illinois native said he put his house in Cary on the market in March and intended to move to Florida sooner.

Taxes are lower there, and the weather will be better for his wife, who suffers from a chronic illness, he said.

“Between that, the weather and my wife’s health, it all adds up,” said Jenner, who has lived in McHenry County for 25 years. “That made it a pretty easy decision.”

Jenner and his wife had been considering moving for more than a year. He said property taxes on their home started to become a burden.

“That was a large factor,” he said. “Why would you stick around and get taxed to death here? What would the attraction be in that?”

Jenner and his family will move to Fort Meyers, Florida, in the first week of December.

The McHenry County College Board of Trustees now is looking for someone to fill Jenner’s vacant seat. The new trustee would fill the position through the April 2019 election.

Diane Evertsen, the board’s vice chairwoman, was not available for comment Friday.

Eligible candidates must be:

• A U.S. citizen

• A resident of the community college district (MCC District 528)

• At least 18 years old

The Board of Trustees invites all who are interested in filling the position to submit a cover letter and resume to pkriegermeier@mchenry.edu. For information about the position, visit www.communitycolleges.org.

McHenry County College Board of Trustees President Chris Jenner has given up his post to move to Florida with his wife.


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Annual Toys For Tots Christmas Parade rolls through McHenryOn Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda@shawmedia.comSponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade started on Main Street and ended in Veteran's Memorial Park, where every rider donated an unwrapped toy to the cause. Ed Komenda - ekomenda@shawmedia.comThe 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade started on Main Street and ended in Veteran's Memorial Park, where every rider donated an unwrapped toy to the cause. Ed Komenda - ekomenda@shawmedia.comOn Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda@shawmedia.comOn Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda@shawmedia.com

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:10:00 GMT

McHENRY – Every year before Christmas, Santa trades in his sled for a motorcycle. That was the story Sunday afternoon in McHenry, where more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their motorized hogs to ride in the 25th annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. “What drives me out here is I grew up poor,” said David Palm, a 58-year-old McHenry man who rode his Harley-Davidson motorcycle in the parade and donated a remote control toy truck. “It’s great when people of a feather get together to do something like this.” Sponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, the parade started on Main Street and ended in Veteran’s Memorial Park, where every rider donated an unwrapped toy to the cause. Volunteers stood on the backs of trucks and collected the toys for children and teens. The Salvation Army and Rotary will distribute the toys to children of low-income families throughout McHenry. “It’s about the gift of giving,” said Kristina Wagner, who visited the parade with her friends. “I like the motorcycles and the thought behind it all.” Holli Gudmundsen, 26, visits the parade every year. It’s an event she remembers from her childhood. “It’s a fun way to kick off the holidays,” she said. Ed Heuer walked to the parade with his 13-year-old Husky-Australian Shepherd mix, Rocky. “It’s tradition,” said Heuer, who visited the parade for years with his daughter, who is now grown and on her own. “We’d come every year, rain or shine.” David Stachura, 18, dressed as Santa in the parade and stood on the back of a truck stocked with donated toys. A member of the McHenry Jaycees, a nonprofit that offers community service opportunities for people ages 18 to 40, Stachura said the Toys for Tots parade is an “amazing” experience. “It makes me feel good standing on the back of the truck knowing kids can still believe in Santa,” he said. On Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda@shawmedia.comSponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade started on Main Street and ended in Veteran's Memorial Park, where every rider donated an unwrapped toy to the cause. Ed Komenda - ekomenda@shawmedia.comThe 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade started on Main Street and ended in Veteran's Memorial Park, where every rider donated an unwrapped toy to the cause. Ed Komenda - ekomenda@shawmedia.comOn Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda@shawmedia.comOn Sunday in McHenry, more than 100 bikers – some dressed as Santa Claus – hopped on their hogs to ride in the 25th Annual Christmas Toys for Tots Christmas Parade. Ed Komenda/ekomenda[...]


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McHenry County business owners prepare for Small Business SaturdaySarah Nader – snader@shawmedia.com Black Orchid Boutique owner Carol Chrisman adjusts a display at her McHenry store Thursday as she prepares for Small Business Saturday. “When I opened [six years ago], it wasn’t the best of times,” Chrisman said. “I have noticed people like to shop online, but there now has been a trend of shopping local. People like personalized customer service and to touch and feel products. Sometimes when you buy online, you don’t know what you are going to get.”Sarah Nader – snader@shawmedia.com A sign is displayed in Carol Chrisman's Black Orchid Boutique in McHenry ahead of Small Business Saturday. “People don’t realize how much it helps the community to shop small and local, and that is something we need to educate residents on,” Chrisman said. “I also supply a lot of made-in-the-USA products, which I think is something that was lost but is coming back.”

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:09:00 GMT

Retailers in McHenry County are gearing up for Small Business Saturday, a typically busy start to the holiday shopping season. American Express launched the idea of Small Business Saturday – the day after Black Friday – in 2010 in an effort to draw shoppers into small local businesses around the U.S. A year later, the initiative was recognized by the U.S. Senate when officials passed a resolution in support of the day, according to American Express. McHenry County chambers of commerce make efforts every year to promote the importance of shopping locally, and Small Business Saturday is no different, said Kay Bates, president of the McHenry Area Chamber of Commerce. “What works to get people into stores is to create a destination shop,” Bates said. “You have to get them in to try it one time. That is why it’s important to set aside a special day. We always encourage people to shop local, but the focus on a particular day keeps it in people’s minds.” About 71 million people in the U.S. are expected to shop on Small Business Saturday, with 76 percent of those shopping specifically to support the day, according to the National Retail Federation. About 56 percent of Americans already have started holiday shopping, but only 2 percent have finished, according to the federation. Lori McConville, co-owner of Marvin’s Toy Store in downtown Crystal Lake, said that she sees many shoppers from not only Crystal Lake but also around the county come into her store on Small Business Saturday. “It’s one of the biggest shopping days of year, if not the biggest,” she said. “It has definitely gotten more popular.” McConville said that downtown Crystal Lake has become a destination shopping spot during the holidays for many because of the variety of stores, lighting, decorations and atmosphere of the area. “Our local community is our foundation,” she said. “But we ripple out into other communities as well. … There is a lot of enticement to come to downtown Crystal Lake.” Customers and retailers both can use the day to take pride in the local business community, McConville said. “It adds to the festivities and brings people together,” she said. “It’s a piece of what people come to expect as a celebration of community. Customers are willing to express appreciation, and it gives us a chance to say thank you in return.” Carol Chrisman, owner of Black Orchid Boutique in McHenry, said she also has seen increased support. “When I opened [six years ago], it wasn’t the best of times,” she said. “I have noticed people like to shop online, but there now has been a trend of shopping local. People like personalized customer service and to touch and feel products. Sometimes when you buy online, you don’t know what you are going to get.” Shoppers from around McHenry County patronize Black Orchid, which is good for the community, Chrisman said. [...]


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McHenry County business owners prepare for Small Business SaturdayMcHenry County chambers of commerce make efforts every year to promote the importance of shopping locally, and Small Business Saturday is no different, said Kay Bates, president of the McHenry Area Chamber of Commerce. “What works to get people into stores is to create a destination shop,” Bates said. “You have to get them in to try it one time. That is why it’s important to set aside a special day. We always encourage people to shop local, but the focus on a particular day keeps it in people’s minds.” About 71 million people in the U.S. are expected to shop on Small Business Saturday, with 76 percent of those shopping specifically to support the day, according to the National Retail Federation. About 56 percent of Americans already have started holiday shopping, but only 2 percent have finished, according to the federation. Lori McConville, co-owner of Marvin’s Toy Store in downtown Crystal Lake, said that she sees many shoppers from not only Crystal Lake but also around the county come into her store on Small Business Saturday. “It’s one of the biggest shopping days of year, if not the biggest,” she said. “It has definitely gotten more popular.” McConville said that downtown Crystal Lake has become a destination shopping spot during the holidays for many because of the variety of stores, lighting, decorations and atmosphere of the area. “Our local community is our foundation,” she said. “But we ripple out into other communities as well. … There is a lot of enticement to come to downtown Crystal Lake.”Customers and retailers both can use the day to take pride in the local business community, McConville said. “It adds to the festivities and brings people together,” she said. “It’s a piece of what people come to expect as a celebration of community. Customers are willing to express appreciation, and it gives us a chance to say thank you in return.” Carol Chrisman, owner of Black Orchid Boutique in McHenry, said she also has seen increased support. “When I opened [six years ago], it wasn’t the best of times,” she said. “I have noticed people like to shop online, but there now has been a trend of shopping local. People like personalized customer service and to touch and feel products. Sometimes when you buy online, you don’t know what you are going to get.” Shoppers from around McHenry County patronize Black Orchid, which is good for the community, Chrisman said. “People don’t realize how much it helps the community to shop small and local, and that is something we need to educate residents on,” Chrisman said. “I also supply a lot of made-in -the-USA products, which I think is something that was lost but is coming back.”Some business owners, including Claudia Kendzior of Morkes Chocolates in Huntley, are preparing for the uptick in business by making sure their workforce and retail stock are ready to meet holiday demands. “Pretty much all of our part-time staff become full time, and we have a nice steady stream of customers,” she said. “We are open 14 hours a day, so I think that is a nice convenience.” Kendzior said Small Business Saturday is a kickoff to the busy season, which goes through the new year into Valentine's Day. “We are a great place to relax after shopping all day,” she said. “We also make gift baskets [and] provide chocolate for fondues or family parties. We have more of an online presence, which also helps a lot.”

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 06:09:00 GMT

Retailers in McHenry County are gearing up for Small Business Saturday, a typically busy start to the holiday shopping season. American Express launched the idea of Small Business Saturday – the day after Black Friday – in 2010 in an effort to draw shoppers into small local businesses around the U.S. A year later, the initiative was recognized by the U.S. Senate when officials passed a resolution in support of the day, according to American Express. McHenry County chambers of commerce make efforts every year to promote the importance of shopping locally, and Small Business Saturday is no different, said Kay Bates, president of the McHenry Area Chamber of Commerce. “What works to get people into stores is to create a destination shop,” Bates said. “You have to get them in to try it one time. That is why it’s important to set aside a special day. We always encourage people to shop local, but the focus on a particular day keeps it in people’s minds.” About 71 million people in the U.S. are expected to shop on Small Business Saturday, with 76 percent of those shopping specifically to support the day, according to the National Retail Federation. About 56 percent of Americans already have started holiday shopping, but only 2 percent have finished, according to the federation. Lori McConville, co-owner of Marvin’s Toy Store in downtown Crystal Lake, said that she sees many shoppers from not only Crystal Lake but also around the county come into her store on Small Business Saturday. “It’s one of the biggest shopping days of year, if not the biggest,” she said. “It has definitely gotten more popular.” McConville said that downtown Crystal Lake has become a destination shopping spot during the holidays for many because of the variety of stores, lighting, decorations and atmosphere of the area. “Our local community is our foundation,” she said. “But we ripple out into other communities as well. … There is a lot of enticement to come to downtown Crystal Lake.”Customers and retailers both can use the day to take pride in the local business community, McConville said. “It adds to the festivities and brings people together,” she said. “It’s a piece of what people come to expect as a celebration of community. Customers are willing to express appreciation, and it gives us a chance to say thank you in return.” Carol Chrisman, owner of Black Orchid Boutique in McHenry, said she also has seen increased support. “When I opened [six years ago], it wasn’t the best of times,” she said. “I have noticed people like to shop online, but there now has been a trend of shopping local. People like personalized customer service and to touch and feel products. Sometimes when you buy online, you don’t know what you are going to get.” Shoppers from around McHenry County patronize Black Orchid, which is good for the community, Chrisman said. “People don’t realize how much it helps the community to shop small and local, and that is something we need to educate residents on,” Chrisman said. “I also supply a lot of made-in -the-USA products, which I think is something that was lost but is coming bac[...]


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Lurie recognized for approach to managing pain

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:44:00 GMT

CHICAGO – A Chicago children’s hospital has been recognized for its approach to relieving patients’ pain.

Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital reported it has been awarded a certificate for a “comprehensive approach to pain prevention and management in children.”

The certificate comes from the nonprofit Childkind International. The Boston-based organization is dedicated to reducing “pain and needless suffering” in all children.

Lurie was one of six hospitals in the U.S. to receive the Childkind designation.

The hospital said it was recognized for a commitment to pain management, tools for measuring pain, treating pain with or without medication, having an acute pain management team and more.

Dr. Patrick Birmingham heads Lurie’s Division of Pain Medicine in its pediatrics anesthesia department. He said better inpatient pain management produces shorter recovery periods.




Illinois man’s memory to live on with Rose Parade float

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:44:00 GMT

SHERMAN – A 22-year-old central Illinois man who died of an undetected aneurysm is being remembered with his portrait on a float at this year’s Rose Parade in California.

The Springfield State Journal-Register reported that family and friends of John Lefferts created the portrait floragraph, made of flowers and other organic materials, this month. It will be placed on a float sponsored by One Legacy and Donate Life America for the Jan. 1 parade.

Lefferts’ parents donated his organs after his October 2004 death. Since then, his remains have helped 37 people across the country.




Pope devotes Mass to poorPope Francis gestures as he arrives for a lunch at the Vatican Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. Pope Francis is offering several hundred poor people _ homeless, migrants, unemployed _ a lunch of gnocchi, veal and tiramisu on Sunday as he celebrates his first World Day of the Poor with a concrete gesture of charity in the spirit of his namesake, St. Francis of Assisi. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:44:00 GMT

VATICAN CITY – Celebrating Mass with poor people in the splendor of St. Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis on Sunday denounced those who dismiss poverty as “not my business” and defined indifference to the needy as a “great sin.”

Later, the pontiff expressed particular concern for those impoverished by war.

After Mass, the pope lunched with some 1,500 poor people from Italy, Poland, France and elsewhere as the Catholic Church marked its first World Day of the Poor, an event created by Francis to draw attention to those living on the margins of society.

“To do no wrong is not enough,” Francis declared in his homily.

Not using our lives to help others is a “great sin where the poor are concerned,” Francis said. “Here it has a specific name: indifference. It is when we say, ‘That doesn’t concern me. It’s not my business, it’s society’s problem.’ ”

Pope Francis gestures as he arrives for a lunch at the Vatican Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017. Pope Francis is offering several hundred poor people _ homeless, migrants, unemployed _ a lunch of gnocchi, veal and tiramisu on Sunday as he celebrates his first World Day of the Poor with a concrete gesture of charity in the spirit of his namesake, St. Francis of Assisi. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)


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U of I student has been named a Rhodes Scholar

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:44:00 GMT

CHAMPAIGN – A University of Illinois student is part of this year’s class of Rhodes scholars.

The Rhodes Trust said in a news release that Thomas J. Dowling is one of 32 students from the United States who will receive full financial support to study at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom.

Dowling is a senior at the school’s Urbana-Champaign campus pursuing a bachelors’ degree in political science and history.

Dowling, who’s from Chicago, is a Truman Scholar. He is writing his senior thesis dealing with state legislatures and he was appointed by Champaign’s mayor to serve on the Zoning Board of Appeals. He’s also been an intern at the AFL-CIO and the Institute of Government and Public affairs.

At Oxford, he plans to do the Masters of Public Policy.




France wrestles with the line between seduction, harassmentAn activist holds a banner reading: "For him impunity, for her a life sentence" Tuesday during a protest in Paris. Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet provoked consternation by suggesting a legal minimum age of 13 for sexual consent "is worth considering." Activists protested in Paris to demand that the age of consent be set at 15.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:44:00 GMT

PARIS – France is in a bind over where seduction ends and sexual harassment begins. Since the allegations of rape and sexual harassment emerged against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein, the country synonymous with love has been stumbling as it addresses the issue of sexual harassment and violence against women. Some have wondered if France can address men’s behavior toward women without throwing out its Don Juan national identity. “France is a country of men who love women,” Guillaume Bigot, who has written about the Weinstein fallout in France, told The Associated Press. “Seduction is a profound part of our national identity ... the culture of the ‘French lover’ and the ‘French kiss’ is in danger because of political correctness.” Yet many women in France reject his viewpoint, favoring instead the thoughts of French feminist writer Simone de Beauvoir on the oppression of women. Even before the hashtag #MeToo went viral, a cruder French version known as #balancetonporc (“squeal on your pig”) appeared online and set off a deluge of anonymous accounts from women denouncing alleged abusers with unprecedented openness. It seemed to signal France could lead the way in the fight against harassment, since the posts numbered in the hundreds of thousands and spoke of ubiquitous sexism and predation in France’s cultural, political and business worlds. But so far it appears the Don Juanists have prevailed. Although the accused include a former French government minister, the former president of the Young Socialists movement, a former TV news editor and members of a world-renowned startup school, most have denied the allegations. More significantly, no powerful figures in France have lost their jobs or their reputations. Philosopher Bernard Henri-Levy has criticized the online movement, saying it’s unfair to compare alleged attackers to “pigs.” And French defenders of seduction have warned against a puritanical, American-style backlash that could demonize romance. Bigot pointed to France’s national symbol – the young, busty Marianne – as proof of France’s state-sponsored obsession with beautiful women, noting that in 1969, bombshell Brigitte Bardot was chosen as Marianne’s physical embodiment. Others chosen to represent her include siren Catherine Deneuve and supermodel Laetitia Casta. French Culture Minister Francoise Nyssen, meanwhile, has provoked ire by defending director Roman Polanski amid calls to cancel a screening of his movies at a French cultural institute. Nyssen urged the French “to not condemn the work” of the Polish-born director who in the 1970s pleaded guilty to having sex in the U.S. with a 13-year-old girl whom he plied with champagne and Quaaludes. The institute said its role was not to moralize. [...]


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Trump era sparks debate about nuclear war authorityAir Force Gen. John Hyten, the incoming commander of the United States Strategic Command, speaks to reporters Nov. 3, 2016, following a change of command ceremony at Offutt Air Force Base in Bellevue, Neb. On Saturday, Nov. 17, 2017, the top officer at U.S. Strategic Command says an order from President Donald Trump or any of his successors to launch nuclear weapons can be refused if that order is determined to be illegal.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 04:43:00 GMT

WASHINGTON – It’s hard to overstate how thoroughly the U.S. military has prepared for doomsday – the day America gets into a nuclear shooting war.

No detail seems to have been overlooked. There’s even a designated “safe escape” door at the nuclear-warfighting headquarters near Omaha, Nebraska, through which the four-star commander would rush to a getaway plane moments before the first bomb hit.

Procedures are in place for ensuring U.S. nuclear weapons are ready for a presidential launch order in response to – or in anticipation of – a nuclear attack by North Korea or anyone else. There are backup procedures and backups for the backups.

And yet fundamental aspects of this nightmare sequence remain a mystery. For example, what would happen if an American president ordered a nuclear strike, for whatever reason, and the four-star general at Strategic Command balked or refused, believing it to be illegal?

Robert Kehler, a retired general who once led that command, was asked this at a congressional hearing last week. His response: “You’d be in a very interesting constitutional situation.”

Air Force Gen. John Hyten, the incoming commander of the United States Strategic Command, speaks to reporters Nov. 3, 2016, following a change of command ceremony at Offutt Air Force Base in Bellevue, Neb. On Saturday, Nov. 17, 2017, the top officer at U.S. Strategic Command says an order from President Donald Trump or any of his successors to launch nuclear weapons can be refused if that order is determined to be illegal.


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Ohio candidate doesn’t regret sexual conquest Facebook post

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 06:22:00 GMT

CLEVELAND – An Ohio Supreme Court justice and Democratic gubernatorial candidate said on Facebook that people should “lighten up” after deleting a previous post outlining his sexual history with women that drew widespread criticism for trivializing sexual harassment and sexual assault. William O’Neill’s original post on Friday criticized “the dogs of war” calling for Democratic Sen. Al Franken to resign after being accused of groping a woman during a USO Tour in 2006. O’Neill wrote that he had been “sexually intimate with approximately 50 very attractive females” during his life and mentioned several encounters, including one in a hayloft of her parents’ barn. O’Neill added another post Saturday afternoon that said he apologized if he offended anyone, “particularly the wonderful women in my life.” Critics from both parties were swift to condemn the 70-year-old O’Neill, including Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor, a Republican, after Friday’s post. Some called for his immediate ouster from the court. “No words can convey my shock,” O’Connor said in a statement on Friday. “This gross disrespect for women shakes the public’s confidence in the integrity of the judiciary.” In an interview Saturday with The Associated Press, O’Neill said he doesn’t regret what he wrote and that he edited the original post and then deleted it after an online commenter called him insensitive for including information that could identify some of the women. “I agreed with them and took it down,” O’Neill said. “I’m a gentleman after all.” After deleting the Facebook post, he wrote another one that doesn’t discuss his sexual past but again references “the dogs of war” hounding Franken. That post says “sanctimonious judges” calling for him to quit should note his history as an Ohio assistant attorney general prosecuting sexual harassment cases. “Lighten up folks,” the post concludes. “This is how Democrats remain in the minority.” O’Neill said during Saturday’s interview that his message was misunderstood and that his civil rights history shows he’s not an “insensitive misogynist.” He said he wrote the original post because “the sensitive subject of sexual harassment” has led people to treat Franken and Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, a Republican, “in the exact same fashion.” Moore has been accused of sexually assaulting teen girls in Alabama when he was a prosecutor in his 30s. Moore has denied the allegations. Asked if he thought the furor would harm him politically, O’Neill said, “I think it’s clear it’s not going to help me. But sometimes when you’re right, you do have to stand alone. And I am right here.” [...]



Crystal Lake city council to vote on boundary agreement with Woodstock

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:48:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – Crystal Lake city staff is recommending the City Council let a boundary agreement with Woodstock expire to continue to market the land near McHenry County College for tech-industrial use.

Crystal Lake and Woodstock made a boundary line agreement in December 1996, which lasted 20 years and is set to expire on Dec. 3. The agreement was renewed for one year last year to give the cities time to consider if they’d like to extend the agreement.

Woodstock’s Comprehensive Land Use Plan asks for buffer area around Crystal Lake in order to preserve the open space and farmland gateway to Woodstock, according to the memo.

When the boundary line agreement was created, it followed the facility planning area line determined by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency based on a review of the sanitary sewer servicing capacity of each city. The facility planning area lines no longer serve as determination for development siting decisions, according to the memo.

“Most developers that the city talks with are mostly concerned about the city’s ability to provide sewer and water for development,” the memo states. “Currently, the city does not have a lot of extra sewer capacity to serve new development to the northwest unless improvements are made to the city’s conveyance system.”

Since the facility planning area system has been eliminated, staff recommended to let the boundary agreement expire and continue to market the available land nearby McHenry County College for tech-industrial type uses.

Woodstock held a special City Council workshop to discuss expiring the agreement. The Crystal Lake memo states Woodstock desires to expand its limits along Route 14 to incorporate about 24 acres along Route 14, south of Lily Pond Road.

The agreement currently draws the line in the area of Lily Pond Road going southwest to the area of Routes 176 and 47.

The City Council will vote on the agreement at its meeting at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 21 at City Hall, 100 W. Woodstock St., Crystal Lake.




Dentist teaches basics of oral care for Illinois police dogs

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:48:00 GMT

AURORA – Most cops clean their guns. These cops clean their gums. Their police dog’s gums, that is. About 30 area officers learned the basics of oral care for their working police dogs Thursday morning from veterinary dentist Dr. Stephen Juriga, who spoke to the group at the Aurora police headquarters. Juriga said police dogs – typically German shepherds, Belgian malinois or bloodhounds – have a high pain tolerance and won’t show signs when their teeth are broken, discolored or otherwise causing pain. But such dental problems can affect their ability to sniff out suspects and conduct their work, so human officers need to conduct basic daily checks for signs of damage or decay. “You’re going to be the initial veterinary team making the diagnosis on your dog,” said Juriga, whose practice at River Heights Veterinary Hospital in Oswego includes police dogs. To be the “initial vet,” Juriga said, officers need to train their dogs to tolerate having their lips pulled back. This allows the officer to look at the dog’s teeth and run a finger, wrapped in wet gauze, over the animal’s gums to brush its teeth daily. He said this can help spot tooth trauma, including abrasions, fractures or discoloration; luxation, when a tooth is jutting out in the wrong direction; or improper occlusion, when the bite is out of alignment. During his first presentation to a group of officers, Juriga gave them tips on how to spot tooth problems and get care. He also gave quick exams to at least five dogs brought by officers from the Wisconsin border to the south suburbs, including Aurora, Bartlett, Dolton, Lisle, Oak Brook, Northbrook, Illinois State Police and the Cook, DuPage and Kane County sheriff’s offices. Romeoville officer John Allen learned that his dog, Spike, a 7-year-old Belgian malinois, has a broken premolar tooth that the dentist called “significantly shortened.” Juriga said it needs an X-ray and potentially further care. Allen said he learned something obvious yet helpful – a dog’s mouth is symmetrical, so if anything seems off on one side, he always can use the other as a comparison. “You have a guide as to what to look at,” Allen said. For Lt. Bill Poirier of the Veterans’ Affairs Police Department in North Chicago, the presentation was a reminder to perform the preventive dental care he already has learned. He said keeping up with dental hygiene will help maintain the health of the fifth dog he’s handled in his career, a 75-pound terrier mix named Berm, or “The Berminator.” The “passive” Berm – who helps track missing people, search for evidence or sniff out drugs – allows Poirier to brush h[...]



Judge reduces bond for McHenry man charged with home invasionJudge Sharon Prather reduced 21-year-old Benjamin Iandola's bond to $60,000 Friday, meaning he must post $6,000 bail to be released from the McHenry County Jail.

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

WOODSTOCK – A McHenry County judge on Friday reduced the bond for a man accused of breaking into a woman’s Johnsburg home, attacking her and taking her car. Judge Sharon Prather reduced 21-year-old Benjamin Iandola’s bond to $60,000 Friday, meaning he must post $6,000 bail to be released from the McHenry County Jail. His bond for the same charges previously was set at $250,000. Should Iandola post the money, he would be required to abide by a court-ordered curfew, avoid alcohol and have no contact with the woman he is accused of harming. The woman told the judge Friday that the no-contact requirement isn’t needed. Beside Iandola’s public defender, Richard Behof, the woman asked Prather to dismiss the no-contact order. Prather denied the request. On Nov. 9, the woman vacated a previous order of protection she filed against Iandola only six days earlier, court records show. Iandola, of the 3100 block of Lincoln Road, McHenry, has been in custody at the McHenry County Jail since Nov. 3, when police said he dragged a woman out of bed and swung a table leg at her, according to court documents. He is charged with home invasion, theft, domestic battery, interfering with the reporting of domestic violence, criminal damage to property, resisting a peace officer, driving under the influence of alcohol, failing to reduce speed, use of weapons and aggravated battery to a peace officer. The most serious charge, home invasion, typically is punishable by six to 30 years in prison. The situation began when Iandola and the woman were arguing during a walk home from a nearby bar Nov. 3, records show. The argument escalated, and Iandola continued to call the woman names, according to the order of protection. A friend eventually called the police, who drove Iandola home. After returning only an hour later and again being kicked out of the home, Iandola tried to break into the house through a screen door, court records show. He ran to the woman’s room, pulled off the covers from her bed, and eventually hid in the woman’s basement, according to claims in the order of protection. When she went to look for him, Iandola began throwing nearby items at her, and smashed her cellphone so she could not call the police. The woman ran for help, and on her way home, saw Iandola driving toward her – in her own car, which he crashed into a light pole, the order said. Police arrived shortly after and arrested Iandola, records show. Less than a week later, a judge granted the woman’s request to vacate the order of protection. Iandola remained [...]


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Huntley Community School District 158 superintendent to resign in January to take new jobPhoto provided Huntley Community School District 158 Superintendent John Burkey is resigning from his position to take a new job.

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

HUNTLEY – Huntley Community School District 158 Superintendent John Burkey is resigning from his position to take a new job.

Burkey will resign effective Jan. 31, 2018, and begin a position as executive director of the Large Unit District Association, according to a news release from the district.

Before he leaves, the Board of Education will name an interim superintendent for the remainder of the 2017-18 school year. The board will begin identifying a full-time superintendent for the 2018-19 school year and beyond.

“Huntley 158 is a special place,” Burkey said in a statement. “There are so many talented, caring people that work for H158, and it has been the highest honor to work alongside the employees of this district. I look forward to continue serving students in Illinois, only now on a larger scale.”

Burkey will work for the Springfield-based Large Unit District Association, which supports the 53 largest unit school districts in Illinois with networking, professional development and advocacy.

“We thank Dr. Burkey for his 12 years of devoted service to the Huntley community,” Don Drzal, president of the Huntley 158 Board of Education, said in the release. “We are saddened to be losing the visionary leadership of Dr. Burkey for our district but are excited that students throughout the state of Illinois will now benefit from his abilities.”

Burke began as the District 158 superintendent in 2006. Since then, enrollment has grown from fewer than 7,000 to nearly 10,000, numerous construction and renovation projects were completed and the district implemented Illinois’ largest 1:1 program initiative, according to the release.

The district has also created Huntley High School’s nationally recognized blended learning and specialized academy programs, saw record-high standardized test scores and maintains one of the lowest operating-cost-per-student rates in the Chicago area, according to the release.

The District 158 Board of Education approved a new contract for Burkey in 2016 that ran through the 2021 school year.

The contract paid Burkey $215,000 for the 2016-17 school year with a 2.5 percent pay increase in each subsequent year of the contract, according to previous Northwest Herald reporting.

Photo provided Huntley Community School District 158 Superintendent John Burkey is resigning from his position to take a new job.


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2 men convicted in 1994 rape, murder to be retried

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

CHICAGO – Cook County prosecutors say they will retry two men convicted of a 1994 rape and murder that recent DNA testing suggests they did not commit.

Judge Dennis Porter on Friday vacated the convictions of Nevest Coleman and Darryl Fulton. The two are serving life sentences and have been behind bars for more than 23 years.

Porter ordered a new trial and freed them on their own recognizance. Attorneys for both men said they expect their clients will be released Monday.

Coleman and Fulton were convicted in 1997 in the rape and murder of Antwinica Bridgeman. The woman celebrated her 20th birthday at a gathering of friends, including Coleman. She disappeared that night and was discovered weeks later in Coleman’s basement.

Coleman attorney Russell Ainsworth says DNA evidence will exonerate both men.




New temporary U.S. attorney named for central Illinois

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

SPRINGFIELD – U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has named a Justice Department lawyer to temporarily lead the U.S. attorney’s office in the Central District of Illinois.

The appointment of John E. Childress of Springfield lasts for 120 days. He replaces Patrick Hansen, who served as acting U.S. attorney since the December 2016 retirement of Jim Lewis. Hansen will remain with the office as an assistant.

Childress is a native of Indianapolis and received his law degree from Duke University in 1990.

The temporary appointments of Hansen and Childress were prompted by President Donald Trump’s failure to nominate someone for the position.

If a presidential nominee isn’t presented within 120 days, Central District judges will be able to choose who temporarily fills the top federal prosecutor’s office until a Trump nominee is confirmed by the U.S. Senate.




Des Plaines school chief who is to resign denies harassment

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

DES PLAINES – A suburban Chicago school superintendent who is to resign next month amid complaints about his conduct has denied sexual harassment.

The Chicago Tribune reported Floyd Williams of Des Plaines District 62 issued a statement Friday. Earlier in the week the district announced he would resign Dec. 13 after sexual harassment allegations. Williams said he “did not engage in sexual harassment against anyone associated with” the district and he was “devastated” by the complaints.

However, Williams said he did “recognize that my words or actions may have been misinterpreted” and apologized to anyone he made uncomfortable.

Under an agreement, Williams will be paid his remaining workdays of the current school year and will receive payment for five vacation days. Williams has been on paid leave since Oct. 17.




Ex-Indiana councilman admits guilt in bribery case

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:47:00 GMT

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. – A former councilman for the northwest Indiana town of Merrillville has admitted taking bribes in a federal plea agreement.

The Northwest Indiana Times reported that 51-year-old Thomas Goralczyk of Merrillville was indicted on felony bribery charges Wednesday by a grand jury in Hammond. The plea agreement was entered Friday. Federal prosecutors say a plea hearing hasn’t yet been scheduled.

Court documents show Goralczyk was charged for soliciting bribes between February 2013 and February 2014 in exchange for awarding a towing contract during his time on the Merrillville Town Council. Court documents say Goralczyk accepted two vehicles, four new camper tires and free motorcycle storage from someone identified as “Individual A” in exchange for the Merrillville contract.

Goralczyk served on the council for two terms but lost a re-election bid in 2015.




Prairie Ridge High School senior collects more than 700 letters to veteransPrairie Ridge High School senior Iain Riemenschneider poses by his National Honor Society project, which asks people to write thank you letters to veterans through Honor Flight's “Mail Call” program. Riemenschneider’s letter drive collected more than 700 letters that will be delivered to veterans on their honorary flights to memorials in Washington, D.C.

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:46:00 GMT

CRYSTAL LAKE – Wisconsin veterans soon will be receiving a lot of mail from the Crystal Lake area. A Prairie Ridge High School student collected more than 700 thank you letters to veterans for his National Honor Society project. Senior Iain Riemenschneider wanted his project to have something to do with Honor Flight, a nonprofit organization created solely to honor America’s veterans for all of their sacrifices. The group transports veterans, at no cost to them, to Washington, D.C., to visit the memorials of the respective wars they fought in. Riemenschneider said his teacher, Sarah Dunker, pushed him in the direction of collecting letters. “I really like history and learning about veterans,” he said, mentioning how captivated he was when a World War II veteran spoke at the school last year. “I had a vet write a letter back to me before from an Honor Flight. I also have a lot of veterans in my family.” The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is teaming up with sponsors to donate $10 for every letter written to veterans who take part in Stars and Stripes Honor Flights in the spring. The letters will be given to World War II, Vietnam and Korean War veterans as they fly to visit the memorials. Stars and Stripes Wisconsin is the chapter associated with this particular drive. With $10 for every letter, Riemenschneider effectively raised more than $7,000. It costs about $500 an Honor Flight. At least 14 veterans will get a free Honor Flight because of his project and all the people who wrote letters. The newspaper and its sponsors will contribute up to $35,000, which accounts for up to 3,500 letters. More than 20 percent of that donation total already was raised through Riemenschneider’s project. World War II veterans take priority on the Honor Flights because they are the oldest group. Thursday was the last day of Riemenschneider’s collection drive. As of his most recent count, he had 719 letters. “It’s a five-month campaign, so anyone wanting to write a letter is always helpful,” he said. “Honor Flight is a great organization. The letters mean a lot to the people they are for. Any written letter does make a difference to veterans.” In the next couple of weeks, Riemenschneider has to gather the letters into one spot, organize them and send them off to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Veterans will read the letters during their Honor Flights in the spring. For information on the p[...]


Media Files:
http://www.nwherald.com/articles/2017/11/16/35c24f1d2cc7443cbf7dedc2562884f9/a3d6742f-5db3-4e5c-a122-c1ee8a341e93/image-pv_web.jpg




Investigation finds raffle irregularities

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:46:00 GMT

BELLEVILLE – A newspaper investigation has found that at least a dozen raffles conducted largely by veterans’ organizations in southwestern Illinois may not conform to state law. The Belleville News-Democrat investigation revealed that some Queen of Hearts raffles appear to violate parts of the state’s Raffles and Poker Runs Act. The investigation also found that ordinances in the cities hosting the raffles don’t appear to be consistent with state law or enforced. Queen of Hearts raffles began gaining popularity in southern Illinois over the past two years. Players buy tickets in the hopes of being drawn to choose a playing card from a board. If the player gets the queen of hearts card they win the jackpot. If not, the game continues with new tickets sold and an increasing jackpot until there’s a winner. Gambling critics and experts said state laws that aren’t followed or enforced could lead to issues. The government could seize prize money. Losing players may demand refunds. Organizations’ insurance policies might not cover accidents and large crowds can threaten the safety of communities. The most common problems the newspaper found with the raffles and city raffle ordinances included issues with maximum prize amounts, issues with raffle licenses or the application for licenses and raffles held at premises that don’t appear to be allowed under state law. The Queen of Hearts raffle that the American Legion is hosting in Aviston rolled over again on Wednesday night, when the jackpot stood at $948,000. Legion officials said they expect a jackpot topping $1 million next week. The Aviston American Legion has a license issued by the city but never filled out an application. Aviston Mayor Dale Haukap said the city made a mistake and is now having the American Legion fill out an application. “We issued a license; we thought, ‘This is great, this is going to cover everything.’ But we looked deeper into it and saw the application form wasn’t filled out,” Haukap said. “It was a negligence on us.” he said. “Little small towns like us, we never had to think about it before.” University of Illinois professor John Kindt, who has taught law and economics for almost 40 years and specializes in gambling, said trouble regulating raffles isn’t just a local problem. “We all have great sympathy for veteran organizations, but who is overseeing these situations to make sure that mistakes aren’t made? I don’t think anyone is regulating them,” he said[...]



Mississippi River bridge opens from Illinois to Iowa

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 05:46:00 GMT

SAVANNA – Illinois and Iowa officials are celebrating the opening of a new Mississippi River bridge from Savanna, Illinois, to Sabula, Iowa.

The $80 million span opened to traffic Friday evening. It provides river passage for U.S. 52 and Illinois 64.

Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn said the modern span provides greater safety and better recreational and economic opportunities.

It stretches 2,400 feet from the Upper Mississippi River Wildlife & Fish Refuge in Iowa to the bluffs of the Mississippi Palisades State Park in Illinois .

The previous span opened in 1932 as a private toll bridge. It’s just 20 feet wide with no shoulders. Large vehicles often overlapped the center line and there was no side-road room for bicycles or disabled vehicles.

It will be dismantled and removed next spring.