Men found crammed in SUV accused of entering US illegally

FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, Ill. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say 14 men from central and South America were found crammed in an SUV when the vehicle was pulled over last month on Interstate 64 in southern Illinois. The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois announced Wednesday the SUV was stopped on Feb. 25 near New…Read more…

Illinois man pleads not guilty in deputy’s fatal shooting

ROCKFORD, Ill. (AP) — An Illinois man has pleaded not guilty to federal charges accusing him of fatally shooting a sheriff’s deputy who was trying to serve an arrest warrant at a hotel. Floyd E. Brown of Springfield appeared in Rockford federal court Wednesday, sitting in a wheelchair and wearing green jail scrubs. He didn’t…Read more…

Missouri regulators approve Midwest wind energy power line

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri regulators have reversed course and given the go-ahead to one of the nation’s largest renewable energy projects. The Grain Belt Express power line approved Wednesday would carry wind power from Kansas on a 780-mile (1,255 kilometer) path across Missouri and Illinois before hooking into a power grid in Indiana…Read more…

Collinsville man charged in Edwardsville couple’s killings

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (AP) — A 23-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in the stabbing deaths of an Edwardsville couple. Madison County prosecutors said Tuesday that Zachary I. Capers of Collinsville faces the counts in the deaths of 68-year-old chiropractor Lois Ladd and 79-year-old contractor Michael Ladd. Capers is held without bond. Authorities say…Read more…

Preschoolers allegedly punished by standing naked in closet

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) — Two teachers in Illinois are on paid leave as authorities investigate allegations that one forced preschool children to stand naked in a closet with the door open as punishment for misbehaving. The teachers are with a Head Start program operated by Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in East St. Louis.…Read more…

Mt. Vernon man pleads guilty in 2017 shooting case

JEFFERSON COUNTY — A 26-year-old Mt. Vernon man was sentenced Wednesday in Jefferson County court to 7-years in prison, after he pleaded guilty to the lesser of two charges against him stemming from a shooting incident in 2017. Karim McGee was arrested in October 2017 in connection with one of a string of shooting incidents…Read more…

Two area interstate crashes result in one fatality in Jefferson County

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS — Illinois State Police officials responded to multiple crashes in our area early Tuesday morning, including a fatal crash on Interstate 64 in Jefferson County. Around 5:39 a.m. Tuesday, 30-year-old Thakur Kafley, of Kentucky was driving his semi westbound on I-64 just west of Mt. Vernon when he veered off the road and…Read more…

Drug suspect escapes arrest after group threatens officer

CHICAGO (AP) — A suspected Chicago drug dealer avoided arrest after a group of people threatened to harm a police officer attempting the arrest. Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says two officers on Sunday observed a drug transaction involving a man inside a vehicle and moved to make an arrest. Guglielmi says as one officer worked…Read more…

Contract to raze decrepit Cairo housing projects OK’d

CAIRO, Ill. (AP) — Demolition of two complexes run by the troubled Alexander County Housing Authority in southern Illinois will begin next month. The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports the housing authority board voted Tuesday to award a $1.9 million demolition contract. Benton-based RCRA Inc. will raze 280 apartments in the Elmwood and McBride complexes. The U.S. Department…Read more…

Lawyers to release list of accused Illinois Catholic clergy

CHICAGO (AP) — Attorneys who have represented clergy abuse victims across the United States say they are releasing a report that lists the names of every Catholic priest and lay person in Illinois who has been publicly accused of sexual misconduct. On Wednesday, the attorneys say they will release a 185-page report that includes background…Read more…

FBI arrests Fairfield man in Mt. Vernon on federal child pornography charges

BENTON, Ill. — A 30-year-old Fairfield man appeared at a detention hearing Monday in federal court in Benton on a seven count federal indictment on child pornography charges. Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigations arrested Christopher Zachman earlier this month while he was working in Mt. Vernon. The indictment charges him with one count…Read more…

Local charges dismissed after Centralia man sentenced on federal meth charges

MARION COUNTY — Numerous drug-related charges contained in multiple Marion County cases have been dismissed against a 24-year-old Centralia man per his plea agreement in federal court. Blake Storey pleaded guilty last week to a two-count indictment charging him in one count with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute and the distribution of…Read more…

Illinois agriculture director focusing on rural development

MATTOON, Ill. (AP) — Illinois’ new agriculture director says rural economic development and increasing broadband access are among his top priorities. Illinois Department of Agriculture Director John Sullivan spoke Monday to Rotary Club members in Mattoon. The farmer and former Democratic state senator from Rushville has had the position for about two months. He was…Read more…

Illinois high court lets Chicago officer’s sentence stand

CHICAGO (AP) — The Illinois Supreme Court has let stand a less than seven year prison sentence for a white Chicago police officer convicted of killing black teenager Laquan McDonald that some critics characterized as lenient. A Tuesday decision denies a bid by the Illinois attorney general’s office and a special prosecutor to resentence Jason…Read more…