Illinois News Roundup for Friday, May 11
Published on May 11 2012 5:45 am
Last Updated on May 11 2012 9:32 am
Written by Greg Sapp
>>AMBER Alert For Peoria Children Ends Peacefully
(Peoria, IL) -- An AMBER Alert has ended for two Peoria children who were abducted yesterday. Police say the non-custodial who took the children and the two young children have been recovered safely.
>>Retirees To Lose Free Health Care
(Springfield, IL) -- Free health care for state and university retirees, lawmakers, and judges is coming to an end. Both the Senate and the House approved a bill that strips them of the retirement benefit, a move that's expected to save the state at least 800-million dollars a year. The proposal is now headed to Governor Quinn, who says he will sign it. The measure will likely be challenged in court as unconstitutional.
>>Quinn Finds Money To Save Daycare Assistance
(Springfield, IL) -- Child care funding is being restored just one week after Governor Quinn announced the state could no longer afford to pay it. Quinn plans to pay for the program by taking 73-million dollars from a fund set aside to pay Medicare expenses. The state will skip paying the Medicare premiums this year and will kick them into a future year. But without paying for child care assistance, the state was facing a massive drop in its workforce.
>>Smith, Attorney Refuse To Answer Questions
(Springfield, IL) -- A group of lawmakers holds Representative Derrick Smith's fate in their hands, yet Smith and his attorney refused to answer many of their questions yesterday. The two appeared before a special legislative committee, which is digging deeper into the federal charges against Smith, and will decide what type of punishment is warranted. Smith's attorney fielded questions from the group but would not confirm whether his client ever engaged in a discussions to accept a bribe, whether he wrote a letter of support for a daycare, or if the seven-thousand-dollar cash bribe ever changed hands. Committee members expressed concern by the refusal and said they'd have to believe the federal documents are true unless Smith can prove otherwise.
>>New Thrill Ride At Six Flags Great America
(Gurnee, IL) -- There's a new thrill ride coming to Six Flags Great America in Gurnee. The X Flight takes riders up 120 feet before sending them through several extreme drops, a sideways roll, and five inversions. It joins a whole host of other coasters at the theme park, including Batman the Ride, The Viper, The Dark Knight, and Raging Bull. The X Flight will open to the public next Wednesday, May 16th.
>>State Police Investigate Allegations Against ESL Cops
(East St. Louis, IL) -- East St. Louis Police Chief Michael Floore said Illinois State Police are investigating an assault allegation against two of his officers. A woman came to the department Tuesday afternoon to file a complaint against two officers. Floore said the woman alleged the officers assaulted her during a traffic stop about 2 a.m. Monday. Floore says he put the two officers on paid administrative leave Wednesday while state police investigate.
>>Legislature Cuts Health Care For Retired State Employees
(Springfield, IL) -- The Illinois Legislature votes to cut free health care benefits from retired state employees. It's a perk that currently costs the state an estimated 880-million dollars. Retired workers who have served the state for at least 20-years, as well as state lawmakers who have served for at least four years and judges who have served at least six years will now have to pay premiums instead of enjoying free health care benefits.
>>Judge Dismisses Case About Troy Teen's Heroin Death
(Madison County, IL) -- A Madison County Judge acquits and frees a Troy man accused of providing the heroin that killed his 17-year-old girlfriend. Taylor Kennedy was on trial for drug-induced homicide for the January 12th, 2011, overdose death of Shannon Gaddis in her family's home near Troy. Hackett acquitted Kennedy based on a defense motion, which argued the delivery of heroin that killed Gaddis had to have occurred in Illinois if the court was to have jurisdiction in the case.
>>Fan Sues Musicians After Injury At Illinois Concert
(East St. Louis, IL) -- A fan of the Insane Clown Posse is suing the music duo and the organizers of a southern Illinois music festival after he was hurt during a 2010 concert. James Ford Jr. suffered a leg injury when he was among of group of fans who participated in an on-stage promotion during the concert. In the lawsuit filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis, Ford is asking for damages in excess of 75-thousand dollars.