Four more sentenced for 'takeover robberies'

URBANA – Four more Kankakee men were sentenced to federal prison Tuesday for their roles in a rash of armed robberies that resulted in more than $400,000 being stolen and several people being beaten or threatened.

The sentencings Tuesday brought the total imposed for seven men to more than 212 years.

Charges filed in 2005 beating

URBANA – Genetic material on a soda can has led to criminal charges against three men in connection with the beating and robbery of a Pesotum man two years ago.

Champaign County State's Attorney Julia Rietz said that in early February, her office was notified by the state crime lab that DNA found on a soda can in the driveway of a home where a 50-year-old man had been attacked in February 2005 matched that of Richard Davis.

Public defender assigned to horse abuse case

TUSCOLA – A Mattoon woman could be sentenced to up to a year in jail in connection with the death of two horses at a horse training center in rural Douglas County.

Roxanne Smith, 47, who listed an address on the 600 block of Marion Street in Mattoon, was scheduled to appear before Circuit Judge Chris Freese at the Douglas County Courthouse on Tuesday morning.

Student charged with burglary in dorm

URBANA – A University of Illinois student out on bond for a November burglary has been charged with entering another student's room and stealing electronic equipment.

Saul Ocampo, 19, a sophomore from Cicero, was arraigned Tuesday on a charge of residential burglary, accusing him of entering a room in Scott Hall on Peabody Drive in Champaign on Dec. 2 or 3, 2006, and stealing credit cards, an iPod, and a laptop computer.

Newly appointed trustee joins in on Illiniwek vote

URBANA – When the final vote came on the Chief Illiniwek resolution, a familiar but surprising face was at the board table.

The UI learned Monday that Gov. Rod Blagojevich had reappointed Trustee Robert Vickrey for another six-year term, according to UI spokesman Tom Hardy.

Home in Urbana a total loss

URBANA – Local and state fire officials and police are investigating a house fire Tuesday that appears to have been intentionally set.

"It's definitely suspicious," said Lt. Ed Ogle of the Champaign County sheriff's office of the fire at 2401 E. Elm St., U.

UI trustees OK Global Campus

Imagine a college degree, without the dorm food.

Always wanted a University of Illinois degree but couldn't spend four or five years on campus? The UI's new Global Campus program might be just the thing.

Leftover Chief issues in Herman's hands

URBANA – The testimony on both sides was heartfelt and emotional.

On one side, University of Illinois graduate student Genevieve Tenoso, an American Indian threatened because of her opposition to Chief Illiniwek, spoke of having to summon her courage simply to come to campus every day.

Push made for special Danville police unit

DANVILLE – City engineer David Schnelle ticked off a list of upcoming street projects in Tuesday's public works committee meeting, including two major road repairs set to begin later this year.

Just an hour earlier in the finance subcommittee meeting, Ward 4 Alderwoman Nancy O'Kane reiterated her plea to fund a special police unit in the upcoming city budget.

Company president lays out plans for neighborhood

CHAMPAIGN – The president of the company that owns Alloy Casting & Engineering says that while his company would like a new, more direct truck route into its Champaign plant, it doesn't want to damage the surrounding neighborhood.

"We'd like to reroute the trucks so they don't drive through that neighborhood," said Dennis Wright, president of Wirco, the Avilla, Ind., firm that owns the local Alloy Engineering & Casting plant.