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Local News

  • Parent Category: News

Johnson to retire as Vermilion County Coroner

Vermilion County Coroner Peggy Johnson has announced her plan to retire when her current term is up in November of 2016.

She has served the position since being appointed in 1999. Johnson will have served four terms when she retires.

In a prepared statement (Thursday), Johnson states 'after careful consideration and many heartfelt talks with family, I am officially announcing my plans to retire after her term is up.' She extends thanks to family, especially her husband, for the support over the years. She also thanks the citizens of Vermilion County for the support and honor of serving as Coroner.

Peggy Johnson started working in the Coroner's Office in 1993 as Chief Deputy. She was appointed in 1999 when Lyle Irvin retired. She won the 2000 election and served since.

At least two other candidates have already announced plans to seek the office.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Wilmington man dies in car-train collision

The Will County Coroner's Office confirms a 34-year-old Wilmington man died after a car-train collision Thursday night. Steven Harden II was pronounced dead at Presence St Joseph Medical Center in Joliet.

The mishap occurred in Wilmington at North First and Railroad Street. An Amtrak train bound for Chicago with 53 passengers struck the car driven by Darden. A witness stated the car disobeyed activated railroad crossing signals. The crossing has lights and bells, but no gates.
There was no injury onboard the train.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

3-mile stretch of I-65 closing for 1-day Thursday

Motorists traveling I-65 in Tippecanoe County, Indiana should be aware of a one-day closing Thursday. The Indiana Department of Transportation is closing an additional three miles of Interstate 65 North.

Work crews will close the road between State Road 25 and State Road 43 for about three hours, starting around 10 am.

Crews are taking advantage of the I-65 North detour to perform maintenance on the bridge over Ninth Street and assess the driving surface of the Wabash River Bridge.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

U.S. offers $10 million in grants to repair railroad crossings

U.S. transportation officials will offer $10 million in grants for states to upgrade highway-rail crossings and tracks in response to a recent surge in flammable fuel shipments.

Wednesday's planned announcement from the Department of Transportation comes as rail crossing collisions have increased over the past several years, following more than three decades of steady declines, according to the AP.

There were more than 2,200 collisions in 2014, killing 269 people and injuring 849.

Almost 40 percent of the fatalities occurred in just five states — California, Illinois, Texas, Alabama and Louisiana.

Acting Federal Railroad Administrator Sarah Feinberg says most rail crossing deaths are preventable.

The grants would pay for improvements along rail routes that transport flammable fuels. Shipments of crude oil and ethanol increased dramatically over the past decade before energy prices plummeted. {AP}

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Two men arrested for 41 rural burglaries

Two men arrested in Will County have confessed to a series of rural burglaries, including several in western parts of Kankakee County.

24-year-old Tony Adams of Kankakee and 22-year-old Jesus DeJesus are jailed in Will County. The arrests (Tuesday) find the men believed to be responsible for up to 22 Kankakee County burglaries over the last month.

Adams and DeJesus are charged with residential burglary, possession of stolen property, unlawful use of a weapon and possession of firearms by a felon.

Both men are connected to 41 burglaries in all, including some in Livingston and Will counties.

A news release from Livingston County Sheriff Tony Childress states approximately $30,000 worth of stolen items, and two vehicles were seized as evidence.

The two suspects were taken into custody Tuesday evening at a home in Elwood.

Kankakee County Sheriff Tim Bukowski credits the community's cooperation with law enforcement in providing information that led to the arrests.

Bukowski praised the extraordinary efforts by the Illinois State Police; Will and Livingston counties Sheriff's Police; the Tri-County Stolen Auto Task Force; and the efforts of the patrol divisions.

94.1 WGFA