FBI: Search for visiting Chinese scholar is agency priority

Posted on June 23, 2017

URBANA, Ill. (AP) - The FBI says the search for a visiting Chinese scholar missing from the University of Illinois is a national priority for the agency. Jon Holloway, assistant special agent in charge of criminal investigation at the Springfield FBI office, discussed the FBI's efforts Thursday night at a campus meeting about 26-year-old Yingying Zhang's disappearance. Holloway says updates are being regularly sent to the office of the FBI's ...

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Illinois lawmakers meeting again to try to reach budget deal

Posted on June 23, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois Legislature is holding another day of a special session with Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic leaders still at odds over an elusive budget deal. Lawmakers will meet Friday for the third straight day of a session that could continue through the end of the month. Rauner called the session to try to force a deal before July 1, when Illinois could enter its third fiscal year without a budget. Not ...

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Prosecutors seek to uphold ‘Making a Murderer’ confession

Posted on June 23, 2017

By TODD RICHMOND and STEVE KARNOWSKIAssociated Press MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Prosecutors say they'll seek to reverse an appeals court decision that the confession of a Wisconsin inmate featured in the Netflix series "Making a Murderer" was improperly obtained and that he should be retried or freed. Brendan Dassey was sentenced to life in prison in 2007 in photographer Teresa Halbach's death on Halloween two years earlier. Dassey told detectives he ...

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State warns Illinois residents about rabid animals

Posted on June 23, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois residents are being warned to beware of rabid animals after more than two dozen rabid bats have been reported in the state this year. In a news release, the Illinois Department of Public Health is offering tips on what to do to minimize their chances of being bitten by a rabid animal and what to do when they come across bats and other animals that carry the virus. The department says people should not bring ...

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Chicago court criticizes judge, lawyer; upholds conviction

Posted on June 23, 2017

CHICAGO (AP) - A Chicago-based appellate court has criticized verbal jousting between a defense attorney and a lower court judge during a fraud trial. The Chicago Daily Law Bulletin reports the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Avalon Betts-Gaston got a fair trial in 2015 despite friction between attorney Jennifer Bonjean and Judge Charles Norgle. It upheld the woman's conviction. Its Tuesday opinion cites Bonjean once suggesting in court ...

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Southeastern Illinois College receives $2.5M donation

Posted on June 23, 2017

HARRISBURG, Ill. (AP) - Southeastern Illinois College has received a $2.5 million donation for a new art museum on its Harrisburg campus. SIC President Jonah Rice announced the contribution from Retired Air Force Colonel William Hise and the estate of his late twin brother, Air Force Brigadier General James Hise, on Thursday. The money will fund a regional art museum in honor of the Hise brothers' sister, Ella Elizabeth Hise. She was a longtime ...

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Chicago business pleads not guilty in $7M fraud scheme

Posted on June 23, 2017

CHICAGO (AP) - A Chicago businessman has pleaded not guilty in federal court to charges he swindled elderly homeowners in a $7 million reverse-mortgage scheme. Federal prosecutors on Thursday said 60-year-old Mark Steven Diamond caused lenders to make reverse-mortgage loans to homeowners who didn't sign up for them or did so after Diamond misrepresented terms. Prosecutors say Diamond had title company representatives provide him the loan checks ...

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Man sentenced to death penalty in girlfriend’s slaying

Posted on June 22, 2017

LEBANON, Ohio (AP) - An Illinois man convicted of abducting his estranged girlfriend from Kentucky and killing her along an Ohio interstate has been sentenced to receive the death penalty. A judge in southwest Ohio's Warren County sentenced Terry Froman, of Brookport, Illinois, on Thursday. The judge followed the recommendation of jurors who this month found Froman guilty of aggravated murder and kidnapping in the September 2014 slaying of ...

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The Latest: Dassey attorneys welcome appellate ruling

Posted on June 22, 2017

CHICAGO (AP) - The Latest on an appellate court affirming that a confession was improperly obtained from Brendan Dassey, one of two defendants in a Wisconsin killing that was the focus of the Netflix series "Making a Murderer" (all times local): 3:20 p.m. The defense team for Brendan Dassey, one of two men featured in the Netflix series "Making a Murderer," is welcoming an appellate ruling that Dassey's confession was improperly obtained. Laura ...

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Court date reset in Vegas for Illinois child killing suspect

Posted on June 22, 2017

LAS VEGAS (AP) - A court hearing was reset for a 34-year-old man suspected of killing his young daughter in Illinois, forcing his wife into prostitution in Las Vegas and abusing two daughters kept hidden in an apartment. A judge on Thursday pushed back to Sept. 21 the date for Jason Scott Quate's next appearance on sex trafficking and living from the earnings of a prostitute charges. Quate remains jailed without bail. Prosecutor James Sweetin ...

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