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September 23, 2014, 11:24 am
970 WMAY News

Victim Of Fatal Car-Pedestrian Crash Had Also Been Struck Along Same Stretch Of Road Back In June

The pedestrian who was struck and killed by a car early Tuesday morning along South Sixth Street had been struck and injured by a car in that same general vicinity three months ago. 


Springfield police say the victim sustained a broken leg back in June while crossing the street near the Wal-Mart and Aldi stores.  On Tuesday, he was crossing near Stevenson Drive when he was hit and fatally injured. 


The driver of the car in Tuesday's collision was also taken to the hospital for treatment of possible shock.


Chicago Mayor Calls For Decriminalization Of Marijuana

A powerful Illinois politician is calling for the decriminalization of marijuana. 


Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says that after penalties for possession of pot were reduced in his city, Chicago saw fewer arrests… but also saw fewer burglaries, one of the crimes often associated with illegal drugs. 


He told a legislative panel that eliminating felony charges for possession of modest amounts of the drug would lower costs to taxpayers… and give drug users a better chance at jobs and other help to rehabilitate themselves.


Aldermanic Candidate Disputes Need For CWLP Rate Hike

The latest candidate for Springfield alderman says he doesn’t think the case has been made for charging City Water Light and Power customers more to shore up the utility’s finances. 


CWLP is facing an estimated $8 million shortfall in its electric fund… and has proposed an increase in consumer charges to help make up the difference.  


But Ward 9 candidate Jim Donelan… a former top aide to the late Mayor Tim Davlin… says the utility needs to try deeper cuts and other strategies before taking more from ratepayers.

Early Morning Fatal Accident Involving Pedestrian Diverting Traffic on S. 6th

A pedestrian is dead and southbound traffic on 6th street is being diverted onto Stevenson Drive while Springfield Police investigate an early morning accident.


Springfield Police say a male pedestrian was struck by a car on southbound 6th Street at Stevenson Drive just after 5:30 this morning. While authorities investigate, traffic is being diverted from Southbound 6th Street to Eastbound Stevenson.


Northbound 6th Street into Springfield is clear.

Suspect Charged in Pipe Bomb Case

The pipe bomb that was found on a downtown sidewalk back in July may have actually sat in the vicinity for several days before it was discovered and safely defused.


Sangamon County prosecutors aren’t sure how the explosive device wound up in front of the Brewhaus, on the north side of East Washington… but contend it was originally placed on the south side of the street in an attempt to blow up the ATM at Chase Bank and get the cash inside.


34-year-old Bradford Moss is charged with planting the bomb… and could face up to 30 years behind bars if convicted.


He was already in custody… after being arrested earlier this month in connection with the robbery of a Marine Bank branch a week after the pipe bomb incident.

Former Davlin Executive Assistant Donelan to Run for Ward 9

More candidates are diving into next year’s local races. Jim Donelan… who served as executive assistant to late Mayor Tim Davlin… will run for alderman in Ward 9.


The State Journal-Register reports Donelan is touting his prior City Hall experience as a reason he can effectively represent residents of the ward.


Incumbent Steve Dove is not seeking re-election, but Prairie Capital Convention Center board member Tony Smarjesse has already announced that he’s also running for the open seat.

Candidate for Ward 2 Calls for Youth Center on East Side

The first formal candidate for the open seat in Springfield’s Ward 2 says the city should try to establish an east-side youth center to give kids some alternatives to street crime and violence.


William Bishop the Third announced his candidacy over the weekend in a social media video.


He’s running for the seat being vacated by Alderman Gail Simpson… who’s running for mayor.


Bishop says kids need activities that can help keep them away from gangs and guns… and wants to see the city either provide funding or help steer grant dollars to such a project.

Window Closed for Medical Marijuana Business Applications, Numbers Expected Soon

The application deadline for establishing a medical marijuana business has now passed… but we still don’t know how many applications were submitted or where they’re coming from.


The coordinator of the state Medical Cannabis Pilot Program says he’s hopeful there are enough good applications to establish cultivation centers and dispensaries in every region of the state.


The number of applications could be released later this week… but it could be weeks more before we learn exactly who applied or who will obtain licenses.


The medical marijuana law keeps big parts of the process secret… in an attempt to ensure the permits are handed out on the merits, not on favoritism.

Bowman's Death Finding in Quincy Challenged, Murder Charges Filed Against Former Prosecutor

The saga of a homicide investigation in Quincy has a familiar ring to it.


Former Adams County prosecutor Curtis Lovelace is now charged with killing his wife… eight years after she died on Valentine’s Day 2006.


Her death was originally ruled inconclusive… based on the findings of pathologist Jessica Bowman, who was also behind several questionable or disputed rulings in Sangamon County death investigations.


A later review by outside experts determined Cory Lovelace had been suffocated, leading to the charges against her husband. Bowman did not return calls seeking comment about her role in the investigation.

Suspect Arrested In Downtown Pipe Bomb Incident; Incendiary Device May Have Been Sitting There For Days

The pipe bomb that was found on a downtown street back in July may have actually been sitting for several days before it was discovered.  That’s part of what’s alleged in the charges that have now been filed against a suspect in the case. 


State’s Attorney John Milhiser says Bradford Moss is accused of planting the device at an ATM at the Chase Bank downtown in an attempt to blow it up and get the cash inside.  The device didn’t go off, and was then found across the street several days later.  The Secretary of State Bomb Squad defused it and no one was hurt.  


Moss was already in custody on unrelated charges stemming from the robbery of a Marine Bank branch later in the summer.


Local Health Needs Assessment About To Get Underway

Your help is being sought to determine the community’s health needs… and the best way to meet them in the coming years.  


Sangamon County public health officials and the city’s two main hospitals are working together on a Community Health Needs Assessment, a requirement of the Affordable Care Act.  Online surveys and public meetings will be used to determine the relative wellbeing of county residents… the biggest health challenges they face… and whether there are adequate resources to address those issues.  


The assessment begins Tuesday and will be completed next spring.

Aldermanic Candidate Wants East-Side Recreational Center For Youth

A candidate for Springfield alderman says the city should provide more recreational opportunities for east-side youth… to help keep them off the streets and out of trouble. 


Bill Bishop announced on Facebook over the weekend that he is running for the Ward Two seat being vacated by Gail Simpson… who is running for mayor. 


Although the Springfield Park District now handles most rec programs in the city, Bishop says Springfield could either find the funds or help bring in grant dollars to support an effort that he says could reduce east-side violence.

Fatal Accident Involving Car and Train in Taylorville

A woman has died in a collision between a car and a train in Taylorville.


WAND-TV reports 66-year-old Kathleen Rhodes was just a few blocks from home when her car was struck by the train and burst into flames.


Several of the train cars contained flammable liquids, complicating the rescue effort.


The accident happened at South Webster and Third Street in Taylorville.

We Ask America Poll: Dead Heat Between Rauner and Quinn

The latest poll in the race for Illinois governor indicates the race has become a virtual dead heat.


The survey from We Ask America gives Republican Bruce Rauner a three-point lead over Governor Pat Quinn… in a poll that has a three-point margin of error.


That same survey several weeks ago had Rauner up by eight points. With the race getting closer, expect the candidates to step up their attacks on each other.


Quinn has been painting Rauner as out-of-touch, while Rauner’s latest ads tie Quinn to former Governor Rod Blagojevich and House Speaker Mike Madigan.

Libertarian Candidate for Governor Acknowledges Uphill Battle

One of the candidates for Illinois governor admits his campaign is a long shot. But Libertarian Chad Grimm could still play a critical role in determining who will lead the state.


Grimm concedes that it will be difficult for him to beat the major-party contenders for governor, but hopes that his campaign will make it easier for future Libertarian and other third-party candidates to get on the ballot.


Republicans have been trying to knock Grimm and the rest of his party slate off the ballot… fearing he could take votes that would otherwise go to GOP nominee Bruce Rauner.

Motorcyclist Recovering After Accident on I-55 Sunday

A motorcyclist is recovering after a frightening crash on a congested stretch of Interstate 55 just outside Springfield Sunday.


Southbound traffic on the interstate was slowing to a crawl because of an ongoing road work project… but authorities say the biker failed to slow down in time and struck the rear of one vehicle.


The impact threw him from his bike into two other cars and then onto the ground.


Even so, authorities say the motorcyclist was treated and released from Memorial Medical Center. Tickets are pending.

Deadline for Medical Cannabis Cultivation and Dispensaries is Today

Today is the application deadline for businesses hoping to get one of the limited number of state licenses to grow or sell medical marijuana.


Two state agencies – Agriculture, and Financial and Professional Regulation – will accept applications for cultivation centers and dispensaries until 3pm this afternoon.


Only serious contenders need apply… there’s a non-refundable $25,000 application fee.


The state will issue up to 21 permits for cultivation centers and 60 for dispensaries.

Report: Money for Illinois' Locks and Dams an Urgent Need

It’s not the first thing people think of when discussing Illinois infrastructure… but a report coming out today says there’s an urgent need for more money to repair locks and dams on Illinois waterways.


According to the Chicago Tribune, the report from the Illinois Chamber of Commerce will argue that breakdowns in the aging locks and dams are causing delays that have reduced the average tonnage moved through Illinois locks by 20-percent.


The report says water traffic is essential for the movement of coal, road salt, petroleum products and construction materials… but the 1930s-era locks and dams cannot keep up with the traffic.

Bond Set At $250K For Suspect Linked To Skeletal Remains

The investigation is continuing, even though a man has now been charged in connection with the skeletal remains found in a shed in Rochester over the summer. 


Former local resident Bradley Perkins is being held on $250,000 bond on charges of concealment of the homicidal death of Tracy Trimby.  Authorities believe Trimby was killed in early 2010. 


And while Perkins is not currently charged with her murder, State’s Attorney John Milhiser says more charges could be coming… and that there are no other suspects in her death.

Fundraiser Puts DSI Closer To Goal

A fundraiser this week has given Downtown Springfield Inc. a lift as it tries to close a $50,000 deficit. 


The State Journal-Register reports the fundraising event Thursday night produced cash and pledges totaling $35,000.  DSI plans another fundraising push next month and will also ask the City of Springfield for help. 


The agency… which promotes downtown businesses and events… is in financial trouble after bad weather slashed revenues from major summer events.


Quinn: No Backup Plan If Pension Reform Is Ruled Unconstitutional

Governor Pat Quinn says he doesn’t have a backup plan in place if the courts rule that his pension reform law is unconstitutional. 


Quinn says it wouldn’t make sense to tell the courts that he has a “Plan B” and give them an opening to throw out the pension law that he championed. 


Recent court rulings have suggested Quinn’s pension law could be found unconstitutional… and if it is, the state would find itself in an even deeper financial hole.


New Bike Lanes Annoying Some Local Drivers

Frustration is mounting over delays on Second Street, as city crews have revamped the layout of the road, reducing lanes for motor vehicles and adding bike lanes. 


Even Springfield Public Works Director Mark Mahoney says he’s been frustrated by the traffic tieups.  But Mahoney says it will get better as traffic signals are retimed… and as drivers get used to the changes. 


The work is part of the city’s efforts to become more “bike-friendly.”


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