Police and Courts | WGLT

Police and Courts

Human Trafficking Rescue Group: Twin Cities Has Five Brothels

Nov 1, 2016
Catalyst Ministries

Bloomington-Normal has five brothels.

That's according to Catalyst Ministries President and Founder Julie Ryan.

Donald / Flickr/Creative Commons

A Bloomington woman has received a four-year prison sentence for neglecting an elderly family member.

Prosecutors say sixty-year-old Doreen Rodgers had her housing, expenses, and a monthly allowance paid for by the older man.

Bloomington Police Dept.

Bloomington Police have arrested fifty-nine-year-old woman for shooting a man early Sunday morning.

The incident happened about 1:34 a.m. in the Hilltop Mobile Home Park.

Emma Shores/WGLT

Traffic stops in Normal have increased dramatically since the police department began a policy requiring officers to have a minimum off two contacts with citizens during each shift.

Police made 19,637 traffic stops last year compared to 12,961 in 2014 -- an increase of 51 percent.

That amounts to an additional 21 stops a day, according to Illinois State University Criminal Justice Professor Michael Gizzi, who analyzed the traffic stop data.

Female professor wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirt
Nikita Richardson / NDR Communications

The Black Lives Solidarity Day at Illinois State University started with a campus visit from a Seattle educator a couple of weeks ago and it sparked an effort to join his initiative to raise awareness of the need for systemic changes to guarantee equality. 

Ralph Weisheit

A special prosecutor has been appointed to look into travel expenses filed by a member of the Normal Town Council.

McLean County State's Attorney Jason Chambers declined to look into the matter, citing his previous service on the Council as a barrier and forwarded  the issue to the Appellate Prosecutor's office.

Tannen Maury / EPA

The attorney general for Illinois is calling on state lawmakers to pass legislation removing statutes of limitations for child sex abuse crimes in response to the case against former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert.  

Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office says state lawmakers have four similar proposals pending on the matter. The soonest any one could be taken up is next month during lawmakers' brief fall session. 

Jeff Bossert / WILL

Gov. Bruce Rauner is urging Illinois lawmakers to approve a bill that would make it easier for inmates to get state identification cards when they're released to help them get jobs and housing.  

Two Democrats, Rep. Mary Flowers and Sen. Kwame Raoul, joined the Republican governor in calling for the House to pass the bill in November during the Legislature's brief fall session. The Senate has already approved the bill.  

Currently, inmates receive a temporary ID when they're released and must pay $20 for a permanent one within 30 days.

Group of 25 sits in a circle on the south side of downtown Bloomington courthouse.
Colleen Reynolds / WGLT

Tears flowed around a Black Lives Matter talking circle in downtown Bloomington Wednesday night as some 25 residents, most of them white, gathered in response to the most recent fatal police shootings of black men --  Keith Scott, a father of seven in Charlotte and Terrance Crutcher in Tulsa.

Ralph Weisheit

State Police are investigating past Coliseum operations in Bloomington.

A city news release indicated concerns arose several months ago involving the previous operator and the city brought in state police at that time.

Bloomington Police Department

Bloomington police say three armed robbers invaded a home on the southeast side of town Wednesday evening.

Officers say the victims told investigators the robbers wore masks and had guns.

Creative Commons / Flickr

The Illinois Department of Corrections has agreed to pay $450,000 to a man who says prison officials punished and humiliated him after he reported his cellmate raped him.

The man's attorneys announced the settlement of his federal lawsuit today.

He was imprisoned for eight months for a minor drug offense, and was housed in a cell at the Logan Correctional Center in Lincoln with a gang member serving 22 years for armed robbery.

Daniel X. O'Neil / Flickr

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed a lawsuit against a Phoenix-based pharmaceutical company for alleged deceptive marketing of an opioid drug meant for cancer patients.  

Creative Commons

A pedestrian has died after being hit by a vehicle in Normal.  The crash occurred around 9:30 a.m. at the intersection of Vernon Avenue and Grandview.

Normal Police and Fire Departments found the pedestrian pinned under the vehicle. McLean County Coroner Kathleen Davis has identified the victim as 74-year old Lanny Lobdell of Normal. Davis says Lobdell died from multiple blunt injuries to the chest after being pinned. He was initially taken to Advocate BroMenn Medical Center where he later died.

Miss_millions / Creative Commons

Illinois prisons officials say six employees who were assaulted by five inmates have been released from the hospital.

Illinois Department of Corrections spokeswoman Nicole Wilson says the workers suffered non-life threatening injuries in the incident yesterday at Pontiac Correctional Center.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Meet Joch. He's the latest addition to the Children's Advocacy Center and the McLean County State's Attorney's office.

Joch will be there to make it easier for children to be in a courtroom or to give testimony or interviews to officials in what can sometimes be a scary setting.

Former Opponent Sues Speaker Madigan

Aug 8, 2016
IPR

Longtime Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan is being sued by one of his opponent’s in this year’s Democratic primary.

Jason Gonzales lost to Speaker Madigan in the March primary, receiving 27 percent of the votes.

Arrest Made In Credit Union Robbery

Jul 29, 2016
Staff / WGLT

Normal police arrested 33-year-old Scott E. Brooks of McLean, IL for the alleged armed robbery at the Land of Lincoln Credit Union on Susan Drive in Normal.

Illinois State University

Illinois State University Police Chief Aaron Woodruff was among about 70 law enforcement officers from around the nation invited recently to the White House to discuss critical issues facing the police.

Michael Hill / WGLT

Illinois State University president Larry Dietz commented on an alleged rape that happened during an ISU Preview orientation program. Speaking at the Board of Trustees meeting earlier today, Dietz said this is the first time this has happened since the event was founded in 1966.

Illinois State University

A father and son are accused of drugging a prospective ISU student and sexually assaulting her in a university dormitory.

It allegedly happened during the orientation program called Preview. ISU Chief of Staff Jay Groves said the situation is unprecedented in the half century of successful summer offerings.

Scott Davidson / Flickr

If you drink and drive, you have a higher risk of getting caught in the Town of Normal than in most cities in the state.

Data from the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists show Normal police make more DUI arrests per officer than all but two other cities in Illinois.

Creative Commons

Police in Normal have arrested two men in what could be the overdose death of a 17-year old girl.

Officers aren't saying anything about the cause of death, but Chief Rick Bleichner implied it when he said there can be immunity from offenses if there is a good faith effort to call for medical help or to save a life.

Creative Commons

Police in Normal have arrested a man they believe is a one-man car burglary wave.

Officers say they found 22-year old Marquel Butler of Bloomington in the 1500 block of Torrey Pines Road early Tuesday morning.

Two religious leaders hold hands on sanctuary
Colleen Reynolds / WGLT

Leaders from five area religious denominations came together last night for what is becoming a hallmark of Bloomington-Normal’s Not In Our Town efforts -- a bringing together of all faiths and even those questioning their faith. This time it was for prayer service, including a reading of names and moment of silence for victims and the families of shooting victims in Dallas, Minnesota and Louisiana.

The Reverend Frank McSwain from Mount Pisgah Baptist Church in Bloomington delivered a fiery message in which he called racism a moral issue.

Creative Commons

For the last half century  the courts have moved to a jurisprudence of law and order instead of one of individual rights.

That's according to Michael Gizzi, an Illinois State University Professor of Criminal Justice Sciences, who spoke with GLT's Charlie Schlenker. Gizzi has co-authored a new book on the fourth amendment to the constitution, the portion of the bill of rights preventing unreasonable searches and seizures so people can be secure in their property and possessions.

Jim Browne / WGLT

U-S Senator Dick Durbin says he's glad Illinois has a stop-gap budget. But he says the year-long budget crisis didn't help reduce urban violence in Illinois.

Il. Dept. Corrections / Facebook via Creative Commons

Federal prosecutors and defense attorneys face a midnight deadline for motions regarding the sentence they'd like former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to receive when his case returns to court for a resentencing hearing next month. 

Decatur police say a black man shot by a white officer was armed with a BB gun that resembled a real firearm. The 40-year-old Decatur man is listed in serious condition after being shot in the chest early Monday. The Associated Press is not yet identifying the man because he has not been charged with a crime.  
 
Officers responded to a report of a man with a gun around 1 a.m. Interim Police Chief James Getz said during a news conference that Officer Andrew Wittmer fired one round during the encounter that "ended the threat." 
 

Not In Our Town Bloomington-Normal

Be safe out there. That's one of the messages police administrators are telling officers in the wake of the ambush of police in Dallas. Rick Bleichner is the Chief in Normal.

"They live with a certain amount of concern and caution when they approach their jobs every day. Something like this obviously just brings it to the forefront. It's another daily reminder of what could happen," Bleichner said. He said just talking about it can help relieve stress.

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