Reviews mostly positive for new Urbana pool plans

URBANA – A $7 million Crystal Lake aquatic center, proposed for the site of the original Crystal Lake Pool, got generally positive marks Tuesday at a park district-sponsored open house.

A morning session attracted about 30 people to the Phillips Recreation Center, while about 50 were at the evening session.

Gifford to consider air-conditioning classrooms

GIFFORD – The school district will consider air-conditioning 12 classrooms.

The school board directed Superintendent Art Shaw to obtain cost estimates and explore options on how classrooms can be air-conditioned.

Gibson City council approves tax increment grants

GIBSON CITY - Council members approved additional tax increment financing grants that will pay 75 percent of the cost of improvements to two businesses.

Teresa McRae plans to move her hair salon to 205 N. Sangamon Ave. and will receive a grant for $55,950 of a total $74,600 interior and exterior renovation plan.

Missouri man cited for DUI following crash in Douglas County

TUSCOLA — A Missouri truck driver was cited for driving under the influence of alcohol after his semitrailer truck crashed in Tuscola on Tuesday morning.

Child pornography trial set for January

URBANA — The trial of an Urbana man indicted by a federal grand jury for possessing and receiving child pornography is scheduled to begin in January.
Justin M. Davison, 26, whose last known address was in the 1600 block of North Willow Road, Urbana, made his first appearance in federal court on Tuesday.

His trial was scheduled for Jan. 3, 2011.

Hammond man sentenced to 45 years in prison for murder

MONTICELLO — A Hammond man has been sentenced to 45 years in prison for the brutal murder of his mother-in-law.

On Tuesday, Circuit Judge John Shonkwiler sentenced Ronald Schmidt II, 28, of Hammond, to 45 years in prison for first-degree murder.

In addition, Shonkwiler ordered Schmidt to pay court costs and more than $17,000 in restitution to the family.

Sex offender's lawyer plans appeal of dismissal of post-conviction petition

URBANA – The attorney for convicted sex offender Yuri Ermakov says he'll appeal a judge's dismissal of Ermakov's request for relief.

"Yes, we are appealing," said Stephen Richards of Chicago. "We're probably first going to do a motion to reconsider. We have evidence the girls were coerced into testifying."

Driver evades police after incident on I-57

LEVERETT – State troopers used two tracking dogs and several officers to search for a man who bailed out of a car along Interstate 57 in Champaign County Monday night.

Master Sgt. Kirk Rogers said police never found the driver.

Champaign man faces felony assault, sex charges

URBANA – A Champaign man who allegedly climbed in a neighbor's bed early Monday is due back in court in December after being charged with four felony offenses.

First Busey earnings up slightly for quarter

CHAMPAIGN — First Busey Corp. continued to show slight improvement in earnings during the third quarter of 2010, the company announced.