Boston Bombing Claims Life of 8-year-old Boy
April 16th, 2013 by Chris Highland
The bombing at the finish line of the Boston Marathon has claimed the life of three spectators. Over 140 people were wounded by the two blasts that went off within second of each other around 2:50 ET yesterday.
One of those dead is 8-year-old Martin Richard. Martin’s sister lost a leg in the explosion and his mother suffered serious brain injuries. Both his mother and sister are still hospitalized from their injuries.
The FBI and other local authorities are still investigating the incident. Today, President Barack Obama called the events in Boston “an act of terror”.
Stay tuned to 103.3 WZND or log on to WZND.com for updates on the Boston Marathon bombing
Skeletal remains found off Mackinaw River
April 10th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON – Skeletal fragments from four individuals have been found at a remote site along the Mackinaw in Gridley Township.
The remains were initially found on April 8th. The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency’s Human Skeletal Remains Protection Coordinator was notified and accompanied members of the McLean County Sheriff’s Department Tuesday afternoon.
Based upon examination of the fragments, the IHPA expert has determined that the remains were redeposited from another location. The bones come from one child, one adult female, one adult male, and a third adult. No origin has been noted, but they could come from as recent as 200 years ago or as old as several thousand years.
More information from IHPA will be released after the investigation has concluded.
The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency’s (IHPA) Human Skeletal Remains Protection Act Coordinator arrived in Bloomington this morning, Tuesday, April 9th 2013 and accompanied members of the McLean County Sheriff’s Department and Coroner’s Office to the remote site along the Mackinaw in Gridley Township. The site was documented via photography and additional remains were recovered during today’s three hour search. Based upon an examination of the fragments recovered over the past two days, the IHPA expert has formed the following preliminary opinion: the remains more than likely have been redeposited from another location up river; the fragments are from a minimum of four individuals (one child, one adult female, one adult male, and a third adult); and currently the remains are of unknown origin, as recent as 200 years ago or as old as several thousand years. Due to these findings, the McLean County Coroner’s Office is releasing the site to the IHPA and they have taken custody of the skeletal remains in order to further classify. This ends the Coroner’s Office formal inquiry into this matter. Thank you.
Renner named Bloomington mayor, Koos keeps post
April 10th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
Bloomington will have a new face for mayor for the next four years.
Tari Renner was voted mayor of Bloomington, edging out John Hanson and Lex Green.
Renner celebrated with friends, family, and supporters at Rosie’s in downtown Bloomington. After results came in that Renner won, Hanson called to congratulate his opponent.
Over in Normal, results from McLean County did not come in so quickly. Citing technical difficulties, the server was down for a significant amount of time last night. Candidates for mayor, JeVaughn Martin, Victor Connor, and current mayor Chris Koos waited until 9:15 p.m. to get voting results.
After much anticipation, Chris Koos was named mayor for a third term. His city council will have a few new faces, as well as returning ones. Cheryl Gaines, Scott Preston, and Kevin McCarthy will serve on Normal City Council.
Voter turnout high in Bloomington, Normal municipal elections
April 9th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
Election season has arrived yet again, but this time the hype will not center around national candidates that the public knows little about – it’s local people.
In Bloomington, Steve Stockton will step down from his post as mayor. Three candidates are vying for his position: Teri Renner, political science professor at Illinois Wesleyan University; former alderman John Hanson, and Lex Green.
All three candidates have experience leading. One of the biggest issues discussed this election season has been the downtown Bloomington bar and entertainment problems.
“If elected, I would revamp the liquor commission,” said Hanson. “I would really like to improve the communication between this liquor commission and the downtown task force.”
In Normal, mayor Chris Koos will run for a third term. On the ballot against Koos is Victor Connor and JeVaugn Martin. Additionally, city council seats are available.
“I’m excited for tonight’s results,” said Koos. “Keeping the council team in tact is important, but we’re looking for a strong group and a new addition could help us get to that point.”
Voter turnout is expected to be higher than in past years, reaching up to 35 percent of registered voters in Bloomington and Normal. But that’s nothing compared to the high turnout in November’s presidential election.
“I think it’s disappointing because local government touches the lives of people on a day-to-day basis,” said Koos. “I would like to see more people at the polls.”
Stay updated with WZND’s full coverage of both elections throughout the day.
April is National 9-1-1 Education Month
April 2nd, 2013 by Emily Pomorski
BLOOMINGTON – April is national 9-1-1 Education month, and local police departments are encouraging schools and leaders to inform to the public about the appropriate use of 9-1-1.
Bloomington Police Communications manager, Darren Wolf, said the most important message is dialing 911 when it’s an emergency.
“Kids should not be playing with phones, you know the 9-1-1 is for emergencies only and the important message is that 9-1-1 is used for emergency only,” said Wolf. “If the phone is tied up or they hang up, call, or missdial, or a child is playing on the phone, that is taking resources away from an actual emergency.”
This month-long campaign is designed to help citizens of all ages recognize the importance of 9-1-1 and their role when calling 9-1-1. Locally, the Bloomington Communications Center urges citizen to know where they are when the dial 9-1-1, as well as to remain calm and ready to listen.
Wolf also mentioned that the police department is looking into a texting component of 9-1-1.
National Public Safety Telecommunications Week is also celebrated in April.
East side Bloomington house fire contained
March 29th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON – Bloomington firefighters are still investigating a house fire on the east side of Bloomington.
The fire at 619 East Mulberry Street began at 6:30 a.m. and was quickly contained.
No injuries have been reported, though one resident of the house was rescued by firefighters.
The fire is believed to have been started in the basement of the home.
This story will be updated.
The cause of the east side fire is still being investigated. Photo by Sarah Beckman.
Livingston Street fire extinguished in Bloomington
March 26th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON – The house fire on 1205 Livingston in southwest Bloomington was extinguished earlier this afternoon.
The fire began at approximately 12:15 p.m. and was heavy at the front of the house.
Bloomington firefighters rescued one dog and cat, but could not rescue the second dog from the fire. No injuries were reported.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Bloomington Police seek help in robbery incident
March 22nd, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON - Bloomington Police are asking for the community’s help in locating suspects involved in the March 13 robbery at Red Roof Inn.
Video of the suspects was captured last Thursday morning shortly before they entered the hotel on W. Market Street and beat the lone attendant, leaving with an undisclosed amount of cash from the business. The suspects were caught on camera at the TA Travel Center Truck Stop.
If anyone has any information that might assist the Bloomington Police in determining who these suspects are, they ask that you contact:
Detective Jared Roth
Criminal Investigations Division
Bloomington Police Department
305 S. East St.
Bloomington, IL 61701
Redbirds Make MVC Tournament Championship
March 17th, 2013 by Ronnie Szudarski
The Illinois State Women’s Basketball team will be headed back to the Missouri Valley Conference Championship game for the first time in 5 years. It took an overtime period but the ‘Birds were able to defeat the number two seeded Creighton Bluejays in the semi-finals. Candace Sykes led the way for ‘Birds recording her second straight double-double, scoring 18 points and grabbing 12 rebounds.
ISU jumped out to an early 5-0 lead but Creighton responded scoring four quick points to get to within one. That was as close as the Bluejays would get in the first half as the two teams traded buckets until about six minutes to go in the half. The Redbirds were up by two before going on a 14 to 5 run to end the half and lead by 11.
In the second half Creighton looked like a completely different team as they found their shooting stroke from behind the arc. The Bluejays started the half shooting a ridiculous 4-5 from behind the arc as they proceeded to go on a 24-6 run to open the second half and take their first lead of the night by a score of 42-37.
Creighton would extend their lead to nine points, with a 55-46 lead, before the Redbirds battled back. Creighton would go ice cold after their hot start to the second half failing to score in the final 5:20 of the game. The birds would go on a 9 to 0 run to end regulation and send the game into overtime as both teams failed to score in the final two minutes of the game.
In overtime both teams struggled to score until Candace Sykes hit a 3-pointer and drew a foul with just under three minutes left, but she would miss the free throw attempt. The ‘Birds would not give up the lead for the rest of the game as Creighton got the lead down to one a couple different times. Good free throw shooting down the stretch helped the Redbirds go on to a 64-61 victory.
ISU Ends Tournament Drought
March 16th, 2013 by Ronnie Szudarski
In a game where both teams struggled shooting the ball it was the defense that propelled ISU Women’s Basketball Team to victory over the Bradley Braves. This is the first time in four years that the Redbirds were able to advance past the quarter finals of the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament.
The Braves took an early 10-8 lead and eventually went up 15-9 as ISU went almost 6 minutes without a basket. Janae Smith carried the Redbirds early on with six quick points before a crucial time out. With about 10 minutes left in the first half Head Coach Stephanie Glance called a timeout that seemed to spark the redbirds as the preceded to go on a 17-1 run to end the half leading by 10.
In the second half Jamie Russell traded baskets with Katie Yohn of the Braves as the two players finally found their shooting stroke. The two teams went back and forth with the Redbirds maintaining a comfortable lead until the final minutes of the game.
Bradley finally found a way to slow down Russell and the Birds as they got to within two points with about two minutes left. However, as the Birds have done all season, they locked down defensively and forced the Braves into tough shots that just wouldn’t fall. Bradley was forced to foul down the stretch which allowed the birds to build the lead back up and win by the final score of 59-48.