All News Content

All News Content

Officer's suit alleges free speech violation

URBANA – The former head of a local multiagency drug unit claims in a federal lawsuit that three of his own bosses in the state police violated his rights to free speech after he said two Paris men may have been wrongfully convicted of murders.

Lt. Michale Callahan's suit, filed Sept. 23 in U.S. District Court in Urbana by Springfield attorney John A. Baker, claims that on June 16, Callahan was stripped of many of his official duties, relieved of prestigious investigations duties and assigned a much less prestigious patrol duty.

Biodiesel making waves

URBANA – Urbana resident Larry Larson is willing to go the extra mile for the environment.

Every two to three months, Larson drives one of his diesel cars to Rantoul or Bloomington to fill up 10 five-gallon fuel cans with biodiesel, a clean-burning, soy-based fuel.

Biomed imaging center gains devices, attention

A new set of world-class magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, devices at a rejuvenated University of Illinois research center already is attracting a lot of attention.

The UI's Biomedical Magnetic Resonance Facility has undergone some big changes since it became part of the Beckman Institute in July of last year and was renamed the Biomedical Imaging Center.

'Like falling off a wall'

CHAMPAIGN – Michael Igyarto enjoys rock-climbing so much, he figured jumping down the side of a five-story building would offer the same thrill and more.

The University of Illinois freshman in mathematics participated Thursday in an Army ROTC-led training exercise, where students rappel down Memorial Stadium.

Historic UI corn plot damaged by vandals

URBANA – An unidentified group of people damaged the historic Morrow Plots at the University of Illinois recently when they stomped down a number of corn stalks.

The Morrow Plots are the oldest agronomic experiment fields in the United States and include the longest-term continuous corn plot in the world. They were designated a National Historic Landmark in 1968.

Homeland Security evaluation under way

Two key area officials are coordinating an evaluation of local agencies in four counties in East Central Illinois and their abilities to deal with possible terrorism.

Danville Fire Chief Matt Weber and Champaign County Emergency Services and Disaster Agency Coordinator Bill Keller met Tuesday to discuss a plan to assess first-response agencies in Vermilion, Champaign, Ford and Iroquois counties as part of Homeland Security efforts statewide.

Students learning to live together

Cathy Kowalczyk was sure her roommate was going to be a party animal. Shannon Stoffey thought hers wanted no part in sharing a double-bed room with her.

After rooming together at Pennsylvania Avenue Residence Halls since Aug. 24, the two University of Illinois freshmen can now laugh at their incorrect first impressions.

ACES impresses international military officers

URBANA – Back at his home in Oman, Col. Mahmood Al-Nabhani's specialty is armor, not plant genetics, but he was still enthralled with presentations on thornless blackberries and red pears during a recent visit to the University of Illinois.

"This is very interesting research they do here," Al-Nabhani said.

EIU suspends president hunt

CHARLESTON – Eastern Illinois University is once again putting its search for a president on hold, and it will make interim President Louis Hencken's position permanent.

It is also extending Hencken's contract for two years, through June 30, 2006.

Nursing home employees stage picket outside facility

URBANA – Champaign County Nursing Home employees, who have worked without a contract for the past 10 months, took their cause to the street Wednesday, picketing for more than two hours in front of the nursing home.

"They've gone a year with no wage increase, no increase in their health insurance benefits, nothing," said Jerry Wright, a staff representative with the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees. "Our membership is getting very discouraged. We're not very far apart on a few issues, but we're dug in."