U.S. 45 to be closed to traffic between Paxton, Rantoul

LUDLOW — U.S. 45 will be closed to traffic between Paxton and Rantoul from April 2 until Sept. 28.

The two-lane highway will be closed to all traffic starting about three miles south of Paxton as workers repair a bridge over the Big Four drainage ditch.

Drivers are advised to use an alternate route.

Trio face weapons charges after gun fired out of car in Rantoul

URBANA — Two Loda men and one Rankin man were arrested on weapons charges following an incident Thanksgiving evening in rural Rantoul.

Toy drive in memory of Alex Faulkner under way

PAXTON — Each September, during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, friends and family of the late Alex Faulkner collect toys to fill the treasure chest at St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Peoria, where Faulkner was treated for cancer for three years.

Facebook bomb threat could land teen in prison for up to 5 years

RANTOUL — A Rantoul teen faces a sentence of up to five years in prison if convicted of a Class 3 felony for allegedly posting a Facebook bomb threat to Rantoul Township High School.

Dakota DeGarmo was arrested for disorderly conduct at a home in the 100 block of Hamilton Drive about 2:15 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 6. He is being held in the Champaign County jail.

Wellington man dies from injuries in accident

RANTOUL — A Wellington man who, while bicycling, struck the back end of a semi-trailer tractor near Rantoul Tuesday morning, has died.

Rick Ried was biking on Innovation Road in the industrial park west of Rantoul when he struck the parked truck.

Mr. Ried died at 1:26 p.m. Tuesday at Carle Foundation Hospital, Urbana. He was 58.

Paxton native nominated for Rantoul Police Officer of Year

RANTOUL — One is the newest police officer on the Rantoul force. The other is a 22-year veteran.

Jerry King, a native of Paxton, and Brad Saltsgaver, originally from Mt. Carmel, were two of the nominees for Rantoul Police Officer of the Year. The award, sponsored by the Rantoul Exchange Club, was presented to Kyle Gregg last Wednesday at a banquet at The Linden Banquet Center.

Police: Suspect hid under clothes pile

CHAMPAIGN — After allegedly beating and stabbing a 49-year-old Rantoul woman, Luis David Vasquez tried to evade police by hiding in the victim’s apartment under a pile of clothes.

New details of the bizarre case emerged Monday as Vasquez was formally charged with attempted first-degree murder and aggravated criminal sexual abuse in Champaign County Circuit Court.

Bridges on north side of Rantoul to be closed for six months

RANTOUL — The bridges carrying North Maplewood Drive and the adjacent pedestrian/bicycle facility over the south leg of the Upper Salt Creek on the north side of Rantoul will be closed for replacement starting Monday, the Champaign County Highway Department announced.

Man arrested in meth case while awaiting sentencing on earlier meth case

RANTOUL — A Penfield man awaiting sentencing for methamphetamine and weapons-related crimes has been arrested again for a methamphetamine-related offense.

Brian Wernigk, 33, was charged Wednesday, Jan. 13, with possession of between 20 and 100 grams of methamphetamine precursors, a Class X felony, following his Jan. 12 arrest in Rantoul for an alleged shoplifting.

Rantoul man gets 8 years for stealing rolls of dimes from Paxton store

PAXTON — A Rantoul man has been sentenced to eight years in state prison for stealing nine rolls of dimes from a safe at a Paxton convenience store.

Charles Hemphill, 47, who listed an address at 1314 Sycamore Lane in Rantoul, pleaded guilty on Nov. 16 in Ford County Circuit Court to one count of burglary, a Class 2 felony, and one count of retail theft, a Class 4 felony.

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