WIQI News

Seven Positive Cases of COVID-19 in Iroquois County Confirmed

The Iroquois County Public Health Department has confirmed one additional case of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in an Iroquois County resident on April 5, 2020. Laboratory confirmed results for this individual were received today. They will remain in isolation per Illinois Department of Public Health guidance. At the time of this press release Iroquois County has seven individuals with laboratory confirmed cases: ? Case 1: Male in his 50’s ? Case 2: Male in his 40’s ? Case 3: Male in his 20’s ? Case 4: Male in his 30’s ? Case 5: Female in her 60’s ? Case 6: Male in his 70’s ? Case 7: Male in his 40’s At this time we are not providing any additional details on these individuals. Our Communicable Disease nurses are working tirelessly to complete investigations, conduct contact tracing and notify anyone determined to be at increased risk of exposure. The situation is fluid. Guidance and recommendations regarding patients under investigation may evolve as more is learned. It is important to remember that even though there have been confirmed cases, this is not cause for panic. Please continue to practice social distancing and other safety measures to limit COVID-19 exposure. Everyone should consider themselves at risk for exposure to coronavirus and should stay home as much as possible. While at home everyone should self-monitor which means to check yourself for fever and remain alert for cough, shortness of breath or sore throat. Most importantly stay home if you are sick! If you have a respiratory illness, stay home for 7 days after your symptoms started and for 3 days after your fever has stopped without the use of fever reducing medications, and your cough or sore throat symptoms have improved (whichever is longer). Avoid the emergency department and other places you seek healthcare if you are not severely ill, unless your doctor advises otherwise. Stay home and keep healthcare access available for others with more severe illness. This is a rapidly evolving situation and the Iroquois County Public Health Department will provide updated information and guidance as it becomes available on our Iroquois County Public Health Department Facebook page and website at http://www.co.iroquois.il.us/covid-19-corona-virus/ For general questions about COVID-19 (Coronavirus), call the Illinois Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Hotline at 1(800) 889-3931 or send an email to: DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV anytime, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  

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Six Positive Cases of COVID-19 in Iroquois County Confirmed

The Iroquois County Public Health Department has confirmed two additional cases of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Iroquois County residents on April 4, 2020. Laboratory confirmed results for both individuals were received today. They will remain in isolation per Illinois Department of Public Health guidance. At the time of this press release Iroquois County has six individuals with laboratory confirmed cases: ? Case 1: Male in his 50’s ? Case 2: Male in his 40’s ? Case 3: Male in his 20’s ? Case 4: Male in his 30’s ? Case 5: Female in her 60’s ? Case 6: Male in his 70’s At this time we are not providing any additional details on these individuals. Our Communicable Disease nurses are working tirelessly to complete investigations, conduct contact tracing and notify anyone determined to be at increased risk of exposure. The situation is fluid. Guidance and recommendations regarding patients under investigation may evolve as more is learned. It is important to remember that even though there have been confirmed cases, this is not cause for panic. Please continue to practice social distancing and other safety measures to limit COVID-19 exposure. Everyone should consider themselves at risk for exposure to coronavirus and should stay home as much as possible. While at home everyone should self-monitor which means to check yourself for fever and remain alert for cough, shortness of breath or sore throat. Most importantly stay home if you are sick! If you have a respiratory illness, stay home for 7 days after your symptoms started and for 3 days after your fever has stopped without the use of fever reducing medications, and your cough or sore throat symptoms have improved (whichever is longer). Avoid the emergency department and other places you seek healthcare if you are not severely ill, unless your doctor advises otherwise. Stay home and keep healthcare access available for others with more severe illness. This is a rapidly evolving situation and the Iroquois County Public Health Department will provide updated information and guidance as it becomes available on our Iroquois County Public Health Department Facebook page and website at http://www.co.iroquois.il.us/covid-19-corona-virus/ For general questions about COVID-19 (Coronavirus), call the Illinois Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Hotline at 1(800) 889-3931 or send an email to: DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV anytime, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  

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Iroquois County Board Meeting

As per Illinois Governor J B Pritzker Executive Order No. 18 of April 1, 2020 the Shelter-In-Place; the limiting of public gatherings to no more than 10 people; the suspension of certain provisions of the Open Meetings Act; and other provisions have been extended until April 30, 2020.  Therefore…..

 

County Board Committee Meetings for April are canceled.  The Full Board Meeting on April 14 will be conducted electronically per the following plan: 

 

The County Clerk; Deputy Clerk; Board Chairman; Finance Manager; and EMA Director will be assembled in the Board Room on April 14, 2020 to conduct the meeting.  Board Members will participate via the Call-In process.  There will be a short agenda primarily to ensure the essential County functions will continue.  No one other than those named above will be allowed to be present at the meeting.  The public will be able to access the meeting via the same call-in procedure used by Board Members and the meeting will be recorded for public consumption.  Call-In instructions will be published during the coming week.  Members of the public may submit comments via email to the County Board office in advance to be read at the meeting.  There will also be an opportunity for public comment for those participating during the call-in meeting.

 

The Administrative Center and Highway Department Offices remain closed to the General Public until further notice.  Essential County functions are being maintained.  Those who need to avail themselves of the functions are asked to contact the appropriate Department and arrange an appointment or other means to complete their business.

 

We will continue to monitor all developments closely and act accordingly with the hope that things will return to normal soon.  Until that time we must follow the leadership of those at the State and Local Levels using Social Distancing and other requirements for the Safety and Well-Being of everyone.

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Second Positive Case of COVID-19 in Iroquois County Confirmed

The Iroquois County Public Health Department has confirmed the second positive case of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in an Iroquois County resident on March 27, 2020. This individual was tested March 24th by a medical provider. Laboratory confirmed results were received today. The individual is a man in his 40’s located in Iroquois County. The individual is at home, doing well, and cooperating with public health officials. He will remain in isolation per Illinois Department of Public Health guidance. At the time of this press release Iroquois County has two individuals with laboratory confirmed cases: ? Case 1: Male in his 50’s- Isolated at home ? Case 2: Male in his 40’s- Isolated at home At this time we are not providing any additional details on these individuals. Our Communicable Disease nurses are working tirelessly to complete investigations, conduct contact tracing and notify anyone determined to be at increased risk of exposure. The situation is fluid. Guidance and recommendations regarding patients under investigation may evolve as more is learned. It is important to remember that even though there have been confirmed cases, this is not cause for panic. Please continue to practice social distancing and other safety measures to limit COVID-19 exposure. Most importantly stay home if you are sick! If you have a respiratory illness, stay home for 7 days after your symptoms started and for 3 days after your fever has stopped without the use of fever reducing medications, and your cough or sore throat symptoms have improved (whichever is longer). Avoid the emergency department and other places you seek healthcare if you are not severely ill, unless your doctor advises otherwise. Stay home and keep healthcare access available for others with more severe illness. This is a rapidly evolving situation and the Iroquois County Public Health Department will provide updated information and guidance as it becomes available on our Iroquois County Public Health Department Facebook page and website at http://www.co.iroquois.il.us/covid-19-corona-virus/ For general questions about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) call the Illinois Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Hotline at 1(800) 889-3931 or, send an email to: DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV anytime, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  

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First Positive Case of COVID-19 in Iroquois County Confirmed

First Positive Case of COVID-19 in Iroquois County Confirmed
The Iroquois County Public Health Department has confirmed the first positive case of novel coronavirus
disease (COVID-19) in an Iroquois County resident on March 26, 2020.
This individual was tested March 23rd by a medical provider. Laboratory confirmed results were received today.
The individual is a man in his 50’s located in Iroquois County. The individual is at home, doing well, and
cooperating with public health officials. He will remain in isolation per Illinois Department of Public Health
guidance. At this time we are not providing any additional details on the individual. Public health officials are
evaluating exposures and will notify those we determine to be at increased risk of exposure. The situation is
fluid. Guidance and recommendations regarding patients under investigation may evolve as more is learned.
It is important to remember that even though there has been a confirmed case, this is not cause for panic.
The Iroquois County Public Health Department is working closely with Illinois Department of Public Health
and numerous local organizations, including Iroquois County EMA, Iroquois Memorial Hospital, emergency
responders (EMS, law enforcement, fire departments, 911 dispatch), and several long-term care facilities. Each
morning these organizations are brought together virtually through the Iroquois County Emergency Operation
Center (EOC) to conduct briefings, communicate needs, and coordinate efforts. This cooperation ensures
Iroquois County’s joint preparedness for and response to COVID-19.
We strongly recommend to continue social distancing and other safety measures which include:
? Stay home as much as possible with adherence to the Governor’s Shelter at Home requirement.
? If gatherings are necessary, limit the number of people to 10 or less.
? Call to check on family, neighbors, and older adults instead of visiting.
? Check with your provider about telehealth options if you feel ill.
? Remember to continue using proper hand hygiene.
? Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when sneezing or coughing. Dispose of the tissue immediately.
If no tissue is available, sneeze or cough into your elbow.
? Do not shake hands. Instead, use another non-contact method to address others.
? Clean frequently touched surfaces often.

Date: March 26, 2020
FOR RELEASE THE WEEK OF:
 Immediate Release
Contact: Dee Ann Schippert, Public Health Administrator
Eric Ceci, EMA Coordinator, PHEP Director
Taylor Eades, Public Information Officer
 (815) 432-2483

PRESS RELEASE 
First Positive Case of COVID-19 in Iroquois County- March 26, 2020
Page 2 of 2
Most importantly stay home if you are sick! If you have a respiratory illness, stay home for 7 days after your
symptoms started and for 3 days after your fever has stopped without the use of fever reducing medications, and
your cough or sore throat symptoms have improved (whichever is longer). Avoid the emergency department
and other places you seek healthcare if you are not severely ill, unless your doctor advises otherwise. Stay home
and keep healthcare access available for others with more severe illness.
We recommend consulting with your doctor if you have the following:
? Fever, cough, shortness of breath or other cold or flu-like symptoms and do not feel better after three to
four days. Use telephone, text, telemedicine or a patient portal to reach out rather than going to your
doctor in person if possible.
? You are an older adult or have chronic health conditions of concern (heart disease, diabetes, lung
disease) and are exhibiting mild symptoms.
Your provider will decide if you need medical care. You usually do not need to be tested unless you are
admitted to the hospital.
ICPHD would like to thank our local partners for their diligent efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus
within our community. We appreciate the cooperation and sacrifice of local businesses and community
members at large in practicing social distancing. With no vaccine available, this is our best response to slow the
spread of COVID-19.
This is a rapidly evolving situation and the Iroquois County Public Health Department will provide updated
information and guidance as it becomes available on our Iroquois County Public Health Department Facebook
page and website at http://www.co.iroquois.il.us/covid-19-corona-virus/ .
For general questions about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) call the Illinois Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
Hotline at 1(800) 889-3931 or, send an email to: DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV anytime, 24 hours a day,
seven days a week.
For information on actions you, your school, workplace, and community can take, please visit Preventing
COVID-19 Spread in Communities at:
http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/diseases-and-conditions/diseases-a-z-list/coronavirus/preventing-spreadcommunities
For daily updates on COVID-19 in Illinois follow the IDPH Daily Updates page at:
http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/diseases-and-conditions/diseases-a-z-list/coronavirus/mediapublications/daily-press-briefings
#

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ILLINOIS STATE POLICE MAKE ARREST FOR CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

Bourbonnais, IL –Illinois State Police (ISP) officials arrested Tyler Vandermolen, (M/35) a Canadian National, for one count of Possession of Child Pornography (Class 3 Felony) and one count of Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 1 Felony).

 

ISP Investigators initiated an investigation after receiving information Vandermolen was allegedly engaged in possession of child pornography. A thorough investigation ensued, and a search warrant was executed on March 10, 2020, at Vandermolen’s temporary residence. During the warrant execution, Investigators seized 36 grams of cocaine and evidence supporting an arrest for child pornography. Vandermolen was arrested and charged with one count of Possession of Child Pornography (Class 3 Felony) and one count of Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 1 Felony). Vandermolen is currently being held at the Kankakee County jail, awaiting a bond hearing.

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Iroquois County Sheriff's Police 03/03/2020

Iroquois County Sheriff’s Police arrested Gary G. Murphy, 59, Chicago, March 1. According to police reports, Murphy was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. He would be transported to the Iroquois County Jail where he would post the required bond.

 

Iroquois County Sheriff’s Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in rural Clifton Feb. 28. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Miya M. Siflies, 18, was traveling north on Old Route 45 when the vehicle in front of her began slowing down to turn off the roadway. Silfies failed to slow down striking the vehicle in front of her driven by Lisa D. Lemenager. More than $1,500 was sustained, no citations or injuries were reported.

 

Iroquois County Sheriff’s Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in Onarga March 1. According to police reports, a vehicle pulling a trailer, driven by Christopher M. Morr, 19, Mackinaw, was exiting the Casey’s parking lot in Onarga when he struck a parked car with his trailer. More than $1,500 in damage was sustained. No citations or injuries were reported.

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Airplane Crash on I-55 near Lincoln, IL

WHAT:                      Airplane Crash

WHERE:                   I-55 Southbound at Milepost 126, Logan County

WHEN:                      Mar. 03, 2020 at 8:49 a.m.

VEHICLE:                Unit 1- Airplane

PASSENGER(S):      Multiple Occupants – Condition Unknown at the time

            PRELIMINARY:      At approximately 08:49, a small airplane crashed on I-55 at M/P 126 in Lincoln IL. The plane became fully engulfed upon impact in the middle of the interstate. Multiple Agencies on the scene to assist. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been notified and is responding. I-55 S/B traffic is being diverted at M/P 126 into Lincoln, IL by IDOT. I-55 S/B road closure is expected for an extended period of time (4-5 hours). 

            CHARGES:               N/A

 

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Illinois takes action against Coronavirus

Current risk to Illinoisans remains low, but state taking all steps to prepare
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is working with local, state,
and federal health partners to take all preventative steps available to limit the spread of
coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). While COVID-19 is not spreading in communities in
Illinois or the U.S., there is evidence of community spread in several countries around the world
and IDPH is committed to working across local, state, and federal agencies to ensure Illinois is
prepared.


IDPH is currently conducting hospital assessments to determine all available capacity in the
event more people need medical care. IDPH is also assessing the availability of personal
protective equipment such as gloves, gowns, and masks for health care workers. Earlier this
month, Illinois became the first state to provide COVID-19 testing in-state and IDPH is
continuing to work on increasing capacity for testing to ensure rapid results.


“As additional cases of COVID-19 are diagnosed in an increasing number of countries, the
Illinois Department of Public Health is working with health care providers and local public
health officials, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other state agencies to
coordinate a robust response and take every possible step we can to prepare,” said IDPH Director
Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “Illinois has already led the charge, becoming the first state to be able to test
for COVID-19 at state laboratories. As we move forward, we are working across city, state, and
federal agencies to identify all available resources and ensure we are using every tool to keep our
communities safe.”


Since January 2020, IDPH has worked closely with local, state, and federal partners to
successfully contain the virus in Illinois, with only two confirmed cases. Efforts have included:
- Implementing testing for COVID-19 in Illinois, becoming the first state to do so.
- Setting up a statewide hotline for questions about coronavirus
- Providing guidance and recommendations to local health departments, hospitals, EMS,
clinicians, and other partners in a variety of areas:
-more-
COVID-19 Preparations/ Page 2
o Assessment for COVID-19 in patients based on risk due to travel or close contact
to a confirmed case
o Evaluation and reporting persons under investigation
o Infection control practices
o Precautions for schools, universities/colleges, and students
o Isolation/quarantine
o Prevention steps for caregivers and close contacts
o Specimen submission and testing
o Recommended strategies for personal protective equipment use
o Emergency department call triage
o Emergency Medical Services and 911 call center response
- Providing routine briefings to the General Assembly
- Communicating with the public by creating a coronavirus disease webpage, issuing news
releases, hosting press conferences, conducting interviews, and providing information on
social media.


While efforts to contain the number of COVID-19 cases will continue, Illinois will also utilize
community mitigation strategies. Community mitigation aims to slow the spread of a novel virus
in communities using nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) better known as “everyday
preventive actions” including staying home when sick, covering coughs and sneezes, frequent
handwashing, and routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces and objects.
In the absence of medications or vaccines, community mitigation measures are the first line of
defense against highly transmissible infectious diseases. Preventative actions should be
practiced by Illinoisans at all times, but especially as we continue to monitor potential spread of
a new virus.


For more information about how you can prepare for the spread of the virus and steps you can
take to stay healthy, visit https://www.cdc.gov/nonpharmaceutical-interventions/. While these
materials reference influenza, the information and actions you can take to prepare yourself and
your community still apply, for At Home, At School, At Work, and At a Gathering.

 

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Watseka Police Department News 2/25/20

Watseka Police investigated a single-vehicle accident in the 300 block of West Mulberry at 9:20 p.m. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Barbara C. Mayotte, 82, Watseka, turned too sharply while making a turn, striking a utility pole. No injuries were reported and no citations were issued. Damage was at more than $1,500.

 Watseka Police responded to a report of theft in the 400 block of North Fifth at 9:20 a.m.

Watseka Police responded to a two-vehicle accident in the 100 block of West Walnut at 12:22 p.m. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Izabelle R. Daniels, 18, Watseka, failed to yield for a vehicle, driven by Ronald P. Long, 68, Watseka, stopped in traffic. No injuries were reported and no citations were issued. Damage was estimated at more than $1,500.

Watseka Police responded to a report of reckless driving in the 1300 block of West Lafayette at 12:34 p.m.

Watseka Police conducted a traffic stop in the 300 block of North Fourth at 4:04 p.m. The driver was given a warning for cellphone use while driving.

Watseka Police responded to a city ordinance violation in the 300 block of North Third at 4:25 p.m

Watseka Police conducted a traffic stop in the 1000 block of East Walnut at 5:53 p.m. The driver was given a warning for lighting.

Watseka Police responded to a report of a reckless driver in the 1000 block of East Walnut at 6:45 p.m.

Watseka Police conducted a traffic stop in the 900 block of East Walnut at 8:33 p.m. The driver was given a warning for equipment.

Watseka Police conducted a traffic stop in the 1700 block of East Walnut at 8:42 p.m. The driver was given a warning for lighting.

Watseka Police responded to an activated alarm in the 300 block of East Walnut at 7:25 a.m.

Watseka Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in the 400 block of East Cherry at 9:07 a.m. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Jo Anne McCord, 78, Watseka, stopped in the roadway to answer a phone call when she was struck by a vehicle, driven by Michael J. Handy, 42, Watseka, being backed out of a driveway. No injuries were reported and no citations were issued. Damage was estimated at more than $1,500.

Watseka Police assisted the Bradley Police Department in locating a wanted subject in the 500 block of East Oak at 9:22 a.m.

Watseka Police responded to a report of a suspicious person in the 200 block of West Hickory at 11:51 a.m.

Watseka Police responded to a report of a violation of an order of protection in the 700 block of East Locust at 1:26 p.m.

Watseka Police responded to a vehicle complaint in the 400 block of North Third at 2:44 p.m.

Watseka Police responded to a juvenile problem in the 300 block of West Hickory at 3:47 p.m.

 

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Fatal Car Crash in Iroquois County

Fatal Crash (Single Vehicle) WHERE: Old Route 45 @ 3000N Road (Iroquois County) WHEN: Saturday, February 22, 2020, 1:05 a.m. VEHICLE: Unit One: 2011 Toyota Camry DRIVER: Unit One: Gary D. Kleinert, 42, Chebanse PRELIMINARY: Preliminary investigation has indicated the Toyota was traveling southbound on Old Route 45 at 3000N Road. The Toyota went off the roadway and overturned. The driver was pronounced deceased on scene by the Iroquois County Coroner.

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Neal McCoy coming to Watseka

The Watseka Family Festival is proud to announce the headliner act for the 2020 Festival, August 27th-30th, country music artists NEAL MCCOY, who will perform Saturday August 29th, at 8PM. NEAL MCCOY has released fifteen studio albums! In 1993, he broke through with the back-to-back number 1 singles No Doubt About It and Wink. His success continued with two more platinum albums and a gold album, as well as six more Top Ten hits. Including Billy's Got His Beer Goggles On! Neal has been on 17 USO Tours around the world and continues to say it's one of the achievements he's most proud of. He is also the recipient of multiple Humanitarian awards from The Academy of Country Music, The Country Radio Broadcasters and The Masonic Grand Lodge. In 2016 Neal has again made a move to continue his patriotic values by reciting the Pledge of Allegiance "Live" on his Facebook page every morning. He's

reached millions of viewers all over the country and around the world. Currently he is at over 1500 days in a row and going strong. 

 

The Watseka Family Festival is excited to have NEAL MCCOY. We feel this will be a big draw for our 2020 festival. Along with NEAL MCCOY, the festival committee is also proud to announce that we will have a COMPLETE CARNIVAL MIDWAY, along with musical entertainment by Nick Lynch Band, Holly Drive, and Rock America. Other activities will include craft vendors and food vendors, Toddler Olympics, Switch It Up Gaming Trailer,  Slow Boys Tractor Show, a car show, cow chip bingo, kiddie pedal tractor pull, power wheels demo derby, sand volleyball tournament, bean bag tournament, face painting, Petting Zoo & Pony Rides, Beer Garden and much more! The Watseka Family Festival is a growing event to bring a weekend of fun filled activities and entertainment to our community. Like last year, the festival will be held at AMERICAN LEGION PARK in Watseka and there will be a $5 general admission gate fee, which will include all entertainment even NEAL MCCOY! Hope to see you there! Follow us on facebook for more information: watsekafamilyfestival 

 

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15 Central Illinois men were arrested over the weekend related to an FBI Operation conducted in Kankakee County.

Central District of Illinois U.S. Attorney John C. Milhiser and FBI Special Agent in Charge Sean M. Cox, Springfield Division, announced that 15 Central Illinois men were arrested over the weekend related to an FBI Operation conducted in Kankakee County.

The operation was conducted with the help of the Bradley Police Department, the Kankakee County Sheriff’s Office, and the Kankakee Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group.

The men have been charged in separate criminal complaints with attempted enticement of a child to engage in illegal sexual activity; some have also been charged with attempted sexual exploitation of children.

The complaints were unsealed on February 18, 2020, as each made their respective initial appearances in federal court in Urbana. Each was ordered detained pending hearings scheduled later this week.

According to the affidavits filed in support of the complaints, each of the men allegedly used various social media applications to contact and engage online with FBI covert employees posing as 14 and 15-year-old minors to make arrangements to meet the minor girl or boy with the intent to engage in sexual activity. Some of the men attempted to entice or coerce the minors to send them sexually explicit images.

As the men arrived at or near the designated address, in Bradley, Ill., they were arrested and taken into custody by FBI Special Agents; the Bradley Police Department; the Kankakee County Sheriff’s Office; and, the Kankakee Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group.

The defendants charged in this operation with attempted enticement of a minor are:

  • Joshua T. Koenig, 27, of Buckley
  • Jody L. Lagesse, 45, of Kankakee
  • Shane R. Ferris, 23,of Bourbonnais
  • Nick Vincent Senor, 25, of Kankakee
  • Dale Martin Alvin Scering, 26, of Bradley
  • Robert Shawn Anderson, 50, of Paxton
  • Bryan Rossi, 29, of Park Forest
  • Timothy Lyle Dean, 37, of Bourbonnais

The defendants charged in this operation with attempted enticement of a minor and attempted sexual exploitation of a child are:

  • Matthew T. Gribbon, 48, of Kankakee
  • Ryan I. Woodruff, 21, of Kankakee
  • Anmol Chugh, 28, of Saint Anne
  • Kyren Williams, 30, of Kankakee
  • Cole Montgomery, 25, of Danville
  • Joseph Adam Longanecker, 40, of Manteno
  • Jazzie Simmons, 28, of Kankakee

If convicted, for the offense of attempted enticement of a minor, each defendant faces a minimum of 10 years and up to life in prison.

For the offense of attempted sexual exploitation of a child, each defendant faces a minimum of 15 years and up to 30 years in prison.

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Indiana Beach CLOSED!

The Twin Lakes region in Monticello Indiana was shocked Tuesday when the California-based owner of Indiana Beach told community leaders the amusement park, open for nearly 100 years, would close.

 

“We didn’t see this coming at all,” Randy Mitchell, White County economic development director, said Tuesday afternoon.

 

That morning, Mitchell had met with White County commissioners and council members, to relay word that things were going well for the amusement park tucked along Lake Shafer, about 30 miles north of Lafayette. That was based on reports Mitchell said he received from Gary Fawks, the local manager of Indiana Beach.

 

On Tuesday afternoon, Mitchell said he met with Gregg Borman, senior vice president of operations for Apex, who told him that the company was closing Indiana Beach and three other amusement parks it owns across the country because of financial reasons.

California-based Apex Parks Group bought Indiana Beach in 2015 from Morgan Recreation Vacations of Sarasota, New York. Morgan Recreation Vacations

 

Apex’s purchase of Indiana Beach marked just the second change the park's ownership after the founding Spackman family sold it to Morgan. The sale included the amusement park, its campgrounds and hotel about 30 miles north of Lafayette.

 

Earl Spackman opened the amusement park in 1926. He initially called it Ideal Beach.

 

The park grew over the years as a place to lounge on the beach, go on the rides and attend big name concerts. In the 1940s, Spackman handed off the resort to his son, Thomas, who eventually changed the name to Indiana Beach.

 

Mitchell said he was told Apex would disassemble the rides this spring and take them to the company’s other nine parks in California and two parks in Florida.

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.The Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the New 2020 "Summer Showcase

The Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the New 2020 “Summer Showcase” event will be held Wednesday, June 3, 2020 from 5:30pm to 8:00pm in the First Trust parking lot on the corner of Third and Walnut Streets this event will replace the business expo. By being the voice of business, the Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce strives to help its members and potential members to grow and promote collaboration in Iroquois County as we celebrate 75 Years 1945-2020. We invite you to stop by the 2020 “Summer Showcase”. We are looking for businesses who would like to showcase their business booths are now available. The 2020 Summer Showcase is open to Chamber members and Non-Chamber members. Take advantage of the early-bird registration for a chance to get your booth rental for free. Participants will get an opportunity to win door prizes from our area local businesses along with a 50/50 drawing and much more! The public is invited to this free event. Save the date we hope to see you there! For more information on the 2020 “Summer Showcase” event please contact Amanda Hibbs at the Chamber office by calling 815-432-2416. 

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Business Emergency Preparedness

February is Business Emergency Preparedness Month for the Iroquois County Emergency Management Agency. All businesses, whether large corporations or small family shops, need to have a plan in case of a disaster. When thinking of how prepared your business is, consider the following questions: ? Do you have an emergency plan? If so, when was it last updated? ? Does your emergency plan include an evacuation strategy? What about sheltering in place? ? Does your facility have any safety equipment? If so, when was the last time it was checked? ? Besides cell phones and landlines, what communications does your business have? ? Does your plan address cyber security? When businesses are prepared for disasters, communities are able to recover more quickly. Not only do local businesses offer essential services to the impacted community, but they also keep people working and keep the economy moving. Iroquois County EMA would like to offer local businesses in Iroquois County a review of their emergency plans. After reviewing the plan, EMA will provide suggestions for improvement and a certificate of recognition for striving to be a prepared business. This certificate can be proudly displayed for customers to see, showing the business’s dedication to its employees and clientele. Preparedness starts locally, and a prepared business community is the best resource for a community in recovery. Visit www.ready.gov/business for free planning tools, and contact Iroquois County EMA at ema@co.iroquois.il.us or (815) 432-6997 to have your business emergency plan reviewed.

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Watseka Police Department News

Watseka Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in the 100 block of East Cheery at 4:43 p.m. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Robert C. Netzband, 20, Gilman, stopped for a stop sign and then continued through the intersection, striking a vehicle driven by Melody A. Lowery, 19, Watseka. No citations were issued and no injuries were reported. Damage was estimated at more than $1,500.

 

Wateska Police arrested Tompa R. Sears, 44, Watseka, in the 800 block of West Lafayette at 11:59 a.m. Police attempted to stop a vehicle sears was driving, and during this time police observed Sears throwing items out of the window of the vehicle, which they later recovered. Sears was charged with possession of methamphetamine and possession of a hypodermic needle. Sears was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.

 

Watseka Police arrested Katina M. Martell, 38, Gilman, in the 400 block of West Walnut at 3:12 p.m. Martell was wanted on an Iroquois County warrant charging her with six counts of forgery. Once taken into custody, Martell was found to be in possession of an uncapped hypodermic needle, which she was chard for as well. She was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.

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Fatal Crash on Route 1 in Kankakee County

WHAT: Fatal Crash
WHERE: IL-1 @ 10500N (Kankakee County)
WHEN: Sunday, January 26, 2019, 8:22 a.m.
VEHICLE: Unit One: Black 2016 GMC 2500 Pickup
Unit Two: Blue 2013 Chevrolet Cruze
DRIVER: Unit One: Ismael Aldape, 50, Oak Lawn
Unit Two: Michael D. Latty Jr., 41, Momence (Deceased)
PASSENGERS: Unit One: Maria Portales, 51, Oak Lawn
14 year old female from Oak Lawn
PRELIMINARY: Preliminary investigation has indicated the GMC was traveling southbound on Route 1 near 10500N Rd in Kankakee County. The Chevrolet was traveling northbound at the same location. The GMC crossed over the center line and collided with the Chevrolet. The driver of the Chevrolet was pronounced deceased on scene by Kankakee County Coroner. The passengers of the GMC were transported to a local hospital with minor injuries. Route 1 was closed for approximately 3 hours due to this incident.
CITATIONS: Aldape was issued a citation for improper lane usage.

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Drug Bust in Watseka

The Watseka Enforcement Team along with the Watseka K-9 Unit made an arrest Wednesday following an undercover narcotics operation. Officers Arrested 25-year-old Jeffrey M. Reed after he allegedly sold suspected heroin to an undercover officer. Reed was taken to the Iroquois County Jail and charged with unlawful delivery of a controlled substance within 1000 feet of a park. WPD expect to make more arrests as a part of this investigation.

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ILLINOIS STATE POLICE ANNOUNCE RESULTS OF OCCUPANT RESTRAINT ENFORCEMENT PATROLS

Illinois State Police (ISP) District 21 Commander, Captain Don Aaron Harsy, announces the results of Occupant Restraint Enforcement Patrols (OREP) held in Kankakee and Iroquois Counties on January 22, 2020. These OREPs provided extra patrol coverage for the ISP so officers could focus on saving lives by making sure all vehicle occupants were buckled up.


Violations
Enforcement Activity
Safety Belt Citations
27
Child Restraint Citations
0
Total Citations
30
Total Written Warnings
15
Most motorists know safety belts save lives, but some ignore their safety and that of their families by neglecting to use safety belts and child restraint devices. These patrols reinforce the occupant protection message by focusing on those who ignore the law. Lives can be saved if people simply “buckle up!” This project is funded through the Illinois Department of Transportation.

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ILLINOIS STATE POLICE WARN THE PUBLIC OF "SPOOFING" CALL SCAM

Springfield, IL – Illinois State Police (ISP) officials have received multiple calls from the public concerning suspected scam calls.  Various ISP districts throughout the state have received reports from citizens stating they have received calls from individuals with a foreign accent claiming to be members of the Illinois State Police seeking their personal information. It has also been reported the callers claim there is some police matter that needs to be resolved which requires the would-be-victims’ personal information (full name, date of birth, social security number, etc.). Concerned citizens have also reported the telephone number where the call originated, matched the ISP District telephone number.
 
This type of scam is a common technique known as “spoofing.”  Spoofing occurs when a telephone number is manipulated and disguised to look like an alternate telephone number of a person’s choosing. Usually the number is disguised to match the telephone number of a government agency that would typically gather personal information in the performance of their duties. 
 
A few factors to consider:
 
·         Always ask the caller to identify himself/herself by name.
 
·         If an ISP Trooper needs to collect personal information from you, they will usually collect the information during an in-person interview.
 
·         Although there are certainly times when an incident will require a follow up telephone call by an ISP Trooper to gather additional information, e.g. a traffic crash investigation, an ISP Trooper will never ask for your social security number over the phone. The Trooper will also have knowledge of the incident you were involved in and your specific role in that incident.
 
·         Scammers can be very aggressive in their techniques. One of their most common used techniques is to create a sense of urgency and fear in their potential victims in order to gain their personal information. 
 
·         If you receive a call from and ISP Trooper claiming to be calling from an ISP District, request the name of the caller and advise the caller you will call them back. Look up the ISP District phone number they claim to be calling from, then call the number and ask to speak to the Trooper whose name you were given.  If there is not a Trooper by that name, please advise the call taker of the incident that just occurred.  ISP District telephone numbers can be fo

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Watseka Police Department News 1/23/20

Watseka Police arrested Randy D. Sheppard, 40, Watseka, in the 400 block of North Second at 9:28 p.m. He was wanted on an Iroquois County warrant charging him with failure to appear on a charge of retail theft. He was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.

 

Watseka Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in the 300 block of East Cherry at 6:45 a.m. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Reece M. Carlson, 21, Watseka, was traveling westbound on Cherry and was unable to see a parked vehicle belonging to Travis Daily, Watseka, due to an icy windshield. The Carlson vehicle then struck the Daily vehicle, causing more than $1,500 in damage. No injuries were reported, and Carlson was cited for an obstructed windshield.

 

 

Watseka Police cited Brian F. Floriant, 45, Watseka, in the 100 block of Yount Avenue at 2:46 p.m. He was cited for driving while his license was revoked. Floriant posted bond and was released.

 

Watseka Police arrested Matthew G. Hickerson, 31, Watseka, after police were called to a residence in the 400 block of North Second in regards to a man being struck with a baseball bat at 3:56 p.m. He was charged with aggravated domestic battery and aggravated battery. Hickerson was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.

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ISP "Operation Lambert" Results

Springfield– Illinois State Police (ISP) announced the results of the special enforcement memorial operation dedicated to fallen ISP Trooper Christopher Lambert, who was killed in the line of duty on Jan. 12, 2019, when his squad was struck while he was on scene of a three-vehicle traffic crash. The crash occurred in the left lane on I-294 near Willow Road in Northbrook.
ISP Troopers throughout the state aggressively patrolled Illinois roadways for seven days from Jan. 12 – Jan. 18 in honor of their fallen comrade. The initiative was designed to further educate the public of the Move Over (Scott’s) Law and was held in remembrance of him and his legacy of courage and duty.   


During “Operation Lambert,” ISP Troopers issued 281 Move Over (Scott’s) Law citations and wrote 64 warnings. Additionally, they made 77 criminal arrests through 503 Scott’s Law details statewide.
ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly said, “The results of “Operation Lambert” reflect greatly on this department and the men and women who risk their lives every day to keep motorists safe. It shows their dedication to carry out their duties and commitment to honor their fallen brother. These troopers make me proud to be the director of one of the greatest agencies in this country. We will continue to aggressively enforce the law and educate the public in order to make 2020 a better year.” 


In 2019, four ISP Troopers were killed in the line of duty. Three were the direct result of either a violation of the Move Over (Scott’s) Law, driving impaired, or a combination of the two. We continue to honor and remember all of them. 
 
The Move Over (Scott’s) Law requires drivers to change lanes when approaching stationary emergency vehicles, including highway maintenance vehicles displaying flashing lights, and any stationary vehicle with their hazard lights activated. The law also states, if changing lanes would be impossible or unsafe, drivers are required to proceed with due caution, reduce the speed of the vehicle and leave a safe distance until safely passing the stationary vehicle. 

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Watseka Police Department News 1/20/2020

Watseka Police arrested Tyrone Leftridge, 20, Watseka, in the 100 block of Nofrth Third at 5:08 p.m. Jan. 16. According to police reports, Leftridge was charged with driving while his license is suspended and operation of an uninsured motor vehicle. Leftridge was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.
 
Watseka Police investigated a two-vehicle accident in the 200 block of East Lincoln at 7:46 p.m. Jan. 17. According to police reports, a vehicle driven by Alfrhan Almuhannad, 52, Crown Point, Indiana, was unable to stop in the intersection as a vehicle driven by Crystal D. Matthews, 54, Watseka, was passing through it. No injuries were reported and no citations were issued. Damage was estimated at more than $1,500.
 
Watseka Police arrested Micah M. Redeker, 24, Watseka, in the 400 block of East Ash at 11:15 a.m. Jan. 19. According to police reports, Redker was wanted on an Iroquois County warrant charging him with possess of meth. Redeker was transported to the Iroquois County Jail.

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ISP District 21 Announces 2019 Activity and Enforcement

Illinois State Police District 21 Commander, Captain Don Aaron Harsy, announced today activity and enforcement figures for calendar year 2019.


Illinois State Police District 21 Troopers issued 6,149 citations, 16,802 written warnings, including 132 DUIs, 493 seatbelt citations, 263 criminal arrests. Troopers also assisted 2,214 motorists, conducted 2,392 Motor Carrier Inspections, and investigated 954 traffic crashes. Of those crashes investigated by District 21, 14 were fatal traffic crashes resulting in 17 fatalities.


According to the National Safety Council the major contributing factors to motor-vehicle deaths in the United States are lack of occupant protection, alcohol, speeding, young drivers, distractions, and large trucks.


In an effort to reduce fatalities, the Illinois State Police uses enforcement activities and educational programs to fight these major contributing factors.

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