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Jury convicts man on home invasion, sex abuse charges

URBANA – It took a Champaign County jury less than three hours Friday to find a Champaign man guilty of home invasion and criminal sexual abuse for an attack on a woman in her apartment two years ago.

Judge Harry Clem set sentencing for Patrick Thompson for Aug. 7.


Officer stationed at Centennial follow recent altercations

CHAMPAIGN – A Champaign police officer will patrol the hallways of Centennial High School for the next three weeks.

The Champaign school district decided to add a school resource officer for its second high school summer school session, which started Wednesday, in the wake of several fights at the school last week. Assistant Superintendent Ecomet Burley said district officials hope the presence of the officer will deter students from causing any trouble during the remaining weeks of summer school.


Courtwatching report notes improvements in legal system

URBANA – Observers of Champaign County's court system believe things have improved in the last year, according to a report released today.

The second annual report of the Champaign County Courtwatching Project concludes that juries are more reflective of the population of the county and that judges are doing a better job of explaining proceedings to defendants and litigants.


Autopsy shows Champaign couple died violently

URBANA – Preliminary autopsy results on a Champaign husband and wife found dead in their home Tuesday night reveal they died violently.

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup confirmed that the couple found in the home at 1702 Scottsdale Drive was Jeremiah Haigh, 58, and Sue Haigh, 66, the owners of the home. They were pronounced dead at their home at 8:45 p.m. Tuesday.


Two found dead in Champaign home

CHAMPAIGN – Autopsies are scheduled this afternoon in Bloomington for two people found dead Tuesday night in a southwest Champaign home.

"We are treating it as a homicide at this point," said Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup.


Retrial in home invasion, sex abuse case set to begin

URBANA – A Champaign man accused of a home invasion and sex abuse that allegedly happened almost two years ago is scheduled to be retried in Champaign County Circuit Court Wednesday.

The accused man and supporters of his have regularly picketed at the courthouse in the two years since he's been charged, claiming he's the victim of racial injustice. Thompson is black. His accuser is white.


Man turns himself in after fatal accident

DANVILLE – A Georgetown man turned himself in to police after allegedly killing 18-year-old Brandon Yoho in a hit-and-run accident early Saturday morning.

Mr. Yoho died about 3:30 a.m. Saturday in the accident on County Road 500 N. about a quarter-mile east of County Road 1650 E. near LaSallette, according to the Vermilion County coroner's office.


Area police to be out in force looking for illegal fireworks

DANVILLE – Lighting up those sky rockets can cost you at least $100 in city fines if you're caught red-handed this Fourth of July holiday.

Police officials in Danville, Champaign and Urbana said residents will lose their fireworks stash and may face city fines if they shoot off their own rockets.


Man receives maximum sentence for child's death

URBANA – Glynis Barker has to take comfort in whatever little things she can these days to overcome the grief of losing her 8-year-old son to a man who hit him, while speeding in his car, then didn't stop.

"I was glad he got the maximum, that people who are negligent behind the wheel will get punished," said Barker of Ogden, the mother of Brandon Siuts, who died of head injuries a day after being hit by a car driven by McKinley Duncan, 23.


Court records give girlfriend's account of death

MONTICELLO – Drug use appears to be a common theme in the death of an Urbana man whose body was found Sunday in a field in Piatt County.

Two men have been charged with the murder of John E. Tash, 40, who lived at 1918 Brownfield Road.