Illinois

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Murder Charge Against 9-Year-Old Triggers Debate

Mom says boy accused of setting fatal fire 'not a monster'; critics say murder charge is too severe

(Newser) - The mother of a 9-year-old accused of setting an Illinois mobile home fire in April that killed five family members is speaking out—and she wants people to know her son is "not a monster," per the AP . The 28-year-old mom, IDed by the Chicago Tribune as Katie... More »

Planned Parenthood: We Built a Huge Clinic in Secret

Facility in Illinois will be open later this month, not far from last abortion clinic in Missouri

(Newser) - One of the largest abortion clinics in the US has been under hush-hush construction for more than a year, but Planned Parenthood is now revealing details. In August, CBS News got one of the first glimpses of the 18,000-square-foot "mega-clinic" in southern Illinois, built about 15 miles from... More »

Cops: Man Drove Through Mall After 124 Online Searches

Javier Garcia charged with terrorism after Sept. 20 incident near Chicago

(Newser) - A 22-year-old man who allegedly drove his SUV into an Illinois mall on Sept. 20 has been charged with terrorism, police announced Sunday. Javier Garcia allegedly entered the Sears store at the Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, left without purchasing anything, then returned in his SUV four minutes later and crashed... More »

Video Captures Girl's Narrow Escape From Coyote

It charged at her in Chicago-area front yard

(Newser) - After 5-year-old Christine came running inside with what her mom calls a "wild story" about being chased by a coyote, the Chicago-area girl's parents checked surveillance video and discovered that she had survived a terrifying close call, ABC News reports. Video of the encounter shows Christine, who had... More »

New Details in Grim Discovery in Dead Doctor's Garage

Dr. Ulrich Klopfer stored fetal remains going back 2 decades

(Newser) - Dr. Ulrich Klopfer died on Sept. 3, but it's not his remains that are making headlines. As his widow and her sister began going through his things, they came upon what would ultimately be described as 2,246 fetal remains kept in his garage, all contained within sealed plastic... More »

Black Smoke Seen for Miles After Train Derailment

Freight train believed to be bearing flammable liquid, but no injuries reported

(Newser) - A freight train believed to be bearing a flammable liquid used in solvents derailed in an Illinois suburb of St. Louis Tuesday, causing a fire that sent thick, black smoke into the air and prompted the evacuation of nearby schools and residences. In a news release, Union Pacific said that... More »

Homeowner Shoots Teen, but Murder Charges Go Elsewhere

5 teens charged because police say they were committing a burglary at time of shooting

(Newser) - Five Illinois teens are charged as adults with first-degree murder in the shooting death of a 14-year-old—despite not touching the trigger. The deceased was fatally shot in the head by a homeowner in Old Mill Creek who described an attempt to steal a 2011 Audi from his driveway around... More »

Overwhelmed Chicago Hospital Has to Turn Away Gun Victims

Mount Sinai had so many trauma patients it was forced to temporarily turn away new ones

(Newser) - In a weekend marred by mass shootings in Texas and Ohio , Chicago registered its own weekend of gun-violence chaos, with more than four dozen people gunned down, at least seven fatally, in various shootings around the city, WLS reports. The carnage was so bad in the Windy City, in fact,... More »

He Woke Up Early at a Sleepover. Then He Smelled Smoke

Quick-thinking Jayden Espinosa, 5, saves 13 people from apartment fire

(Newser) - A 5-year-old at a Chicago sleepover is now being hailed as a hero for saving 12 people and himself from an early-morning fire. WPVI reports Jayden Espinosa was sleeping over at his aunt's apartment last weekend, and he woke up Saturday morning while everyone else was still snoozing. Jayden... More »

GOP Group Sorry for 'Jihad Squad' Post

'Political jihad is their game,' Illinois group said of Democratic lawmakers

(Newser) - An Illinois Republican group has apologized and removed from its Facebook page a post that showed images of four Democratic congresswomen who have been criticized by President Trump and referred to them as the "Jihad Squad." The post appeared Friday night on the Republican County Chairman's Association... More »

Father Makes Plea to Daughter's Killer

Ronggao Zhang urges Brendt Christensen to reveal where body is

(Newser) - Yingying Zhang's father was quiet Thursday as he watched a judge sentence Brendt Christensen to life in prison for his daughter's rape and murder. Afterward, quiet he was not. "If you have any humanity left in your soul, please help end our torment," Ronggao Zhang urged... More »

'Chance the Snapper' Finally Nabbed in Chicago

American alligator was likely an illegal pet

(Newser) - It took a week, but "Chance the Snapper" is finally out of Chicago's Humboldt Park Lagoon. Chicago police confirm to CNN that the 4- to 5-foot-long American alligator was caught sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning by Florida alligator expert Frank Robb. Surprisingly, Robb used a fishing... More »

Cops: Mom Caught Driving With Kids in Rooftop Pool

Jennifer Janus Yeager's arrest makes a splash in Illinois

(Newser) - She might've used rope. Instead, an Illinois mother thought it was a good idea to secure an inflatable pool on the roof of her SUV by having her two daughters sit inside of it, according to Dixon police. Jennifer Janus Yeager was arrested Tuesday on two counts of endangering... More »

Gator Turns Up in Most Unlikely of Places

Officials attempting to trap reptile in popular Chicago park

(Newser) - An alligator has made a home in one of Chicago's most popular parks. A crowd gathered around Humboldt Park Lagoon on the city's West Side Tuesday as officials responded to a 911 call about a Facebook post showing an alligator in the area, reports the Chicago Tribune . A... More »

They Thought He Was Dead. Then He Showed Up at a Party

2 families suing Chicago PD, hospital after one family took wrong man off life support

(Newser) - The grief-stricken family of Alfonso Bennett was planning his funeral after taking him off life support—until he showed up at a party. ABC News reports on the story out of Chicago that now has two families suing the city's police department and Mercy Hospital for a tragic case... More »

This Is America's Most Patriotic State

New Hampshire tops the list for 2019

(Newser) - It's Independence Day—do you know how patriotic your state is? WalletHub looked at 13 factors, including voting numbers, volunteerism rates, military engagement, trial and grand jury participation, the share of residents participating in groups or organizations, and even a state's civics education requirement. Based on all that,... More »

Job Seeker Gets Recruiter Email With Offensive Movie Line

Connie Cheung was 'shocked' agency worker sent her racist line from 'Full Metal Jacket'

(Newser) - When Connie Cheung received an email from a recruiting agency about an office manager assistant position she'd applied for, what should've been info on the next steps for the job was something entirely different. "Me love you long time," was the only message in the email... More »

Black Patient Arrested on Walk With IV

Shaquille Dukes says he was target of racist cops

(Newser) - A hospital patient suffering from double pneumonia went for a walk with his boyfriend and brother before all three were arrested in what they argue was an incident of racial profiling. Shaquille Dukes, a 24-year-old black male, tells CNN he was wearing a hospital gown and hooked up to an... More »

In 11th State to Legalize Pot, a Bonus for 770K

It's not only OK to smoke marijuana recreationally in Illinois—pot convictions will also be expunged

(Newser) - On Tuesday, Illinois became the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana for those 21 and over, and the bill makes another big move within its 610 pages. CNN reports that, thanks to HB 1438, about 770,000 state residents with convictions involving pot will be able to have their records... More »

Eric Trump: Bar Worker Committed 'Disgusting Act' Against Me

Employee at Chicago cocktail lounge allegedly spit on president's son Tuesday night

(Newser) - Eric Trump was visiting the Windy City Tuesday night, but a stop at a local hot spot apparently proved less than pleasant for him. NBC reporter Mary Ann Ahern was the first to report on the alleged incident at the Aviary cocktail bar, where word that Trump had been spit... More »

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