A Friday night fire extensively damaged a home in Loda, leaving a family of five homeless. The one-story home of the Ivan Garcia family sustained damage from what’s believed to have been an electrical fire.
Firemen from Loda and Buckley answered the call at 11:30 pm. The blazes destroyed the kitchen and family room.
The state Fire Marshall was investigating.
No injury was reported. Some 20 firemen were on the scene for nearly three hours.
The second man accused of killing three people in Newton County in August pleaded not guilty to additional charges Friday.
24-year-old Sebastian Wedding of Lake County, Indiana, and 24-year-old Derrick Cardosi of Sumava Resorts, Indiana, were charged back in August with three counts of murder, auto theft and theft. The arrests came from the deaths of 39-year-old Kimberly Spears 23-year-old Richard Thomas and 20-year-olod Justin Babbs. All were from Newton County.
Both men pleaded not guilty to the charges in September.
On Friday, Wedding pleaded not guilty to two more counts of murder, while committing robbery and burglary. Cardosi pleaded the same on Wednesday of this week.
The Illinois Commerce Commission has approved a plan allowing Ameren Illinois customers to pay less for electric service delivery beginning in January.
The new rates, which represent a savings of about $1.37 for the typical residential customer who uses 10,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a month, are unrelated to the Future Energy Jobs legislation signed Wednesday by Gov. Bruce Rauner.
That legislation, which was supported by Ameren, is expected to provide further rate savings for the company's 1.2 million downstate electricity customers for the next several years. The primary focus of the bill was to save thousands of jobs at two nuclear plants in Illinois that are operated by Exelon, one of which is in nearby Clinton.
Meanwhile, the rate cut approved by the commerce commission this week will generate approximately $14.5 million less, or 1.41 percent, in annual revenue for the company compared to the rates approved in a 2015 formula rate case.