Centralia man federally indicted for meth shipped in TV

MARION COUNTY — A 31-year-old Centralia man is back in custody in connection with a drug bust by the Centralia Police Department last summer — but this time he’s facing a federal indictment. Carlos Scott was initially arrested July 1, 2020, on a Marion County charge of Class X felony distribution of between 100 and…Read more…

Central Illinois woman charged in deaths of boyfriend, baby

TUSCOLA, Ill. (AP) — A central Illinois woman has been charged with murder and other counts in connection with the March deaths of her infant daughter and her boyfriend in a fire. Illinois State Police arrested 26-year-old Stefanie Sanders of Tuscola on Monday on two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of involuntary manslaughter and…Read more…

Weather Service: 4 tornadoes confirmed in central Illinois

MECHANICSBURG, Ill. (AP) — The National Weather Service said Tuesday that four tornadoes touched down Monday evening in central Illinois but no damage was reported as the storms swept across farm fields and open areas. One tornado touchdown was confirmed Arenzville in Cass County, while three others were confirmed in Sangamon County _ one near…Read more…

Police, fire, code enforcement shut down Home Motel

CENTRALIA — City officials on Monday put a stop to all operations at the Home Motel on West Noleman in Centralia and declared all rooms of the facility uninhabitable. According to Centralia Police Chief Greg Dodson, after several months of inspections by state and local officials, every single room in the facility was found to…Read more…

Centralia man arrested for April stabbing outside Wamac bar

CENTRALIA — A 53-year-old Centralia man is in the Marion County Jail following his arrest Sunday night in connection with an April 4 stabbing after closing time at a Wamac bar. According to Wamac police, James Miller was involved in a physical altercation with 26-year-old Michael Daiber, of Breese, outside McGuire’s Grill and Bar in…Read more…

Flora man sentenced to IDOC in hotel stabbing case

CLAY COUNTY — A 40-year-old Flora man was sentenced Monday in Clay County Court to 20 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to attempted murder and aggravated battery stemming from a stabbing incident in December 2020. Shane Highsmith was arrested after stabbing multiple people on December 27, 2020, at a Flora hotel. He was…Read more…

Jury convicts Mt. Vernon man on 3 of 5 counts in double-shooting case

JEFFERSON COUNTY — A Jefferson County jury found a 45-year-old Mt. Vernon man guilty on three of five counts Friday in a 2020 case charging him in connection with a double shooting last summer. Alvin C Smallwood was charged in Jefferson County Court with four Class X felonies – two for aggravated battery through the…Read more…

Defendant testifies in Jefferson County double-shooting case

JEFFERSON COUNTY — A Jefferson County jury began deliberations Friday afternoon in a 2020 case charging a 45-year-old Mt. Vernon man with shooting two people last summer. Alvin C Smallwood is charged in Jefferson County Court with four Class X felonies – two for aggravated battery through the discharge of a firearm and two for…Read more…

Black cemeteries are reflection of deep segregation history

CHICAGO (AP) — Black cemeteries are scattered throughout the United States, telling the story of the country’s deep past of cemetery segregation. As these burial grounds for the dead mirrored the racial divisions of the living, Black communities organized to defend the dignity of their deceased and oppose racist cemetery policies. Many Black Americans excluded…Read more…

People of color more exposed than whites to air pollution

Across America, people of color are exposed to more air pollution than whites from industry, vehicles, construction and many other sources, a new study has found. Using government air pollution and census data, researchers found that disproportionate numbers of non-white people were exposed to potentially hazardous fine particle pollution from nearly all major U.S. emission…Read more…

Report: LaSalle virus crisis response ‘reactive and chaotic’

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — An investigative report by an Illinois inspector general found a chain of miscommunication, lax policy and missed opportunities leading up to and during a COVID-19 outbreak last fall at the LaSalle Veterans’ Home. The report on the deaths of 36 residents was released Friday. The newly appointed director of the Illinois…Read more…

Man regains fitness to stand trial for 2016 murder of former Salem woman

JACKSON COUNTY — Despite constant disruptions during a mental fitness hearing Wednesday in Jackson County Court, a 28-year-old man accused of the 2016 murder of former Salem resident Robin Stief, was declared fit to stand trial. Robert Dennis was ultimately removed from the courtroom Wednesday after becoming loud and uncooperative and at one point walking…Read more…

Bomb threat leads to Southern Illinois high school closing for the week

MARION, Ill. — A bomb threat Wednesday at a Southern Illinois High School has resulted in students being placed on full-remote learning as ongoing disruptions are expected. The threat was made toward Marion High School Wednesday morning when the school administration became aware of a phone call from a caller originating from New York state…Read more…

Code violations lead to closure of Centralia motel

CENTRALIA — Residents of the Home Motel in Centralia have a few days to find other living arrangements. According to Gayla Harting, Community Development/Planning & Zoning Director for the City of Centralia, the establishment will be closed Tuesday due to numerous code violations that have rendered it uninhabitable. Harting says after several issues over the…Read more…

City of Centralia ready to help small businesses apply for pandemic funds

CENTRALIA — The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced the availability of funds through the Restaurant Relief Fund (RRF) and the City of Centralia is willing to help area small businesses apply for assistance. Assistant City Manager, Derek Sherman states that the City of Centralia is willing to assist small business owners with the registration…Read more…