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Gas prices likely to remain stable

The fuel industry experts believe the low gas prices may be here to stay through the winter.

Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com, said Monday he expects prices to drop below $2 a gallon for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

"I think that it will stay that way until about Valentine's Day and then you start getting into warmer weather and preparing for the summer driving season. But, really, I think there will be mostly good news until then," DeHann said.

Some temporary spikes are likely to occur, DeHaan said, but as long as there are no unforeseen circumstances, he believes drivers in Central Illinois will see fairly stable gas prices.

Gas prices remain relatively inexpensive compared to recent years due to the low cost of crude oil, say officials with AAA in Chicago.

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Rankin man likely facing criminal charges for shootings

Once he recovers from self-inflicted gunshot wounds, a Rankin man is likely facing charges for shooting two other men last week in a domestic dispute.

The Vermilion County state's attorney is reviewing the case against 45-year-old Vernon Lee Scott. State's Attorney Randy Brinegar says it's a matter of when the charges are filed. Lee is expected to recover. He shot himself when deputies went to arrest him last Thursday at the Rankin residence where Lee fled to after shooting his father-in-law and his estranged-wife's boyfriend.

Donald Frazier was shot. So was Jeff Turner.

The Vermilion County sheriff's department was still investigation the incident, which began Thursday morning at Don and Sharon Frazier's residence, south of Rankin.  Lee is married to but separated from Emily Lee, the stepdaughter of Don Frazier. There was an order of protection against Lee prior to the recent episode.

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Andrew Condon handed 50-year prison term for killing gas station attendant

Iroquois County Judge Gordon Lustfeldt (Monday) sentenced a rural Ashkum man to 50 years in prison for the 2012 shooting death of a Gilman gas station attendant. The judge also said denied a new trial for 36-year-old Andrew Condon.

Condon was convicted in August of killing 27-year-old Jonathan Rubin. That happened after Rubin refused to sell Condon cigarettes because he didn't have a proper ID.

Condon continues to say he's innocent. He maintains the evidence didn't support the verdict. Condon did apologize to the Rubin family members, stating justice wasn't served for either side.

Impact statements were presented to the court prior to the sentencing.

Key evidence in the trial, presented by the state, included an incriminating box of ammunition found in Condon's home –that box minus the exact number of rounds fired at the victim inside the Gilman gas station. The firearm used to kill Rubin was never found, but the state reasoned with the argument that Condon had enough time to dispose of evidence before he was questioned by police.

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I-74 re-opened after morning crash

Illinois State Police are reporting traffic is back to normal on Interstate 74 between Farmer City and LeRoy following a Monday morning accident.
Police said a semi-trailer involved in the accident rolled on to its side blocking the eastbound lane between the Illinois 136 and LeRoy exits. Traffic was being rerouted onto U.S. 150 at the Illinois 136 exit, about four miles east of LeRoy.

There were no major injuries reported. The accident is still under investigation.
The accident was reported just before 8 o'clock. The interstate was closed for about 90 minutes.

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Cissna Park returns to state; Watseka comes up short in Super-Sectional

The Cissna Park T-wolves earned a second consecutive state volleyball tournament berth Saturday with a 3-set win over Mount Pulaski. The Timberwolves fought back from a 1-0 deficit (18-25), then stormed to a 26-24, 25-21 win at the Effingham St. Anthony 1A Super-Sectional.

Coach John Landon's squad will take a 32-5-1 record to the semi-finals Friday. They meet up with Clay City at 9 am at ISU's Redbird Arena.

Watseka meanwhile, came up short in a bid for another state appearance. The Warriors season ended at Beecher with a 2A loss to Elmhurst Timothy Christian. Watseka ended its season at 25-12 after winning its Regional for a fourth time in five years.

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