News

News

Hearing for former UI football player reset

URBANA – A hearing for a former University of Illinois football player accused of residential burglary has been pushed back.

Judge Thomas Difanis granted a motion to continue the hearing for Derrick McPherson, 21, a wide receiver who was dismissed from the team, along with Joseph "Jody" Ellis, 20. McPherson is scheduled for trial on residential burglary and theft charges.

Tuscola school's history program wins best in state

TUSCOLA – As Tuscola prepares for its sesquicentennial celebration this summer, it's fitting that one of its schools has received state recognition for excellence in history education.

In fact, East Prairie School in Tuscola has the best history program in the state, according to the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. It won the single Governor's Award at an expo last week.

Settlement reached with family of slain woman

URBANA – The family of a University of Illinois graduate student who died after being struck by a bus in a crosswalk in 2004 settled a lawsuit Monday for $1.1 million in damages.

On Monday morning, Circuit Judge Jeffrey Ford granted a summary judgment in favor of Robert Jeffers, father and administrator of the estate of Carolyn Jeffers, against the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District.

Ex-NBA player faces prison time

DANVILLE – Former NBA player Keon Clark of Danville faces up to five years in prison after pleading guilty Monday to two felony charges and a misdemeanor.

Clark, 32, was scheduled for trial Monday in Vermilion County Circuit Court but accepted a plea agreement instead.

Several Champaign bars 'not going back'

CHAMPAIGN – Several downtown Champaign bars will remain smoke-free regardless of whether the city council repeals the smoking ban for bars and clubs this week.

Carlos Nieto, who owns six downtown bars, and Jon "Cody" Sokolski, who co-owns Boltini Lounge, 211 N. Neil St., both say they will continue to ban smoking inside their bars.

Urbana School Board meeting to highlight art by students

URBANA – The Urbana school board's first business meeting with new officers Tuesday looks to be a little more colorful than most.

The board will recognize student art from each of its elementary schools as part of an annual fine arts program. The art will hang on the walls of the Burkholder Administrative Service Center, 205 N. Race St., U, for a year.

Damage from fire leaves Carmargo residents without home

CAMARGO – Fire in the attic of a Camargo home Sunday will displace the residents for some time.

Steve Hillard of 111 Lakewood Drive said he and a neighbor were blowing in insulation into the attic of his house about 9:30 a.m. when he smelled smoke and noticed a haze inside his house.

Three children rescued from apartment amid smoke, fire

CHAMPAIGN – Firefighters rescued a 14-year-old boy and two younger children from an apartment where food on a stove caught fire early Sunday in Champaign.

Crews were dispatched after both an automatic alarm, and a call from a resident in an apartment below noticing a smoke smell, to 2415 N. Neil St., C, at 1:43 a.m. Sunday, according to a Champaign Fire Department report.

Burglaries, thefts reported

Area police are investigating the following burglaries and thefts that occurred last week:

– Bob Parish Auto Repair, 104 E. Monroe St., Philo, was broken into between 4:30 p.m. Thursday and 8:30 a.m. Friday, according to Sgt. Dave Coffey of the Champaign County sheriff's office.

Couple sees 6th child graduate from university

CHAMPAIGN – For the better part of two decades, the McKennas of rural Mason City have been regulars at the University of Illinois.

Much to the surprise of Phillip and Patricia McKenna, on Sunday, Chancellor Richard Herman publicly thanked them for the investment and sacrifice they have made in sending all six of their children to the UI at Urbana-Champaign.