Murder trial in girl's 2011 death begins
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (AP) - The trial of a parolee accused of stabbing to death a suburban Chicago girl in her home has begun.
Jury selection began Tuesday in John Wilson Jr's murder trial. Opening statements at the Cook County Circuit Court in Bridgeview are expected this week.
Wilson is accused of killing 14-year-old Kelli O'Laughlin as he burglarized her Indian Head Park home in 2011. Prosecutors allege Wilson also taunted O'Loughlin's mom later from the girl's stolen phone.
If convicted, the 40-year-old Wilson could face a sentence of life in prison.
Suburban Chicago man sentenced for killing infant
WAUKEGAN, Ill. (AP) - A judge has sentenced a suburban Chicago man to 30 years in prison for killing his then-girlfriend's 5-month-old son and dumping the body into a trash container.
In imposing the punishment on Demetries Thorpe, The News Sun in Waukegan cites the judge as noting the body was never found despite landfill searches.
Lake County Judge Daniel Shanes said it's "horrible" to think Joshua Summeries' "tombstone is literally a bunch of garbage."
A victim statement from the mother, Kisha Summaries, was also read for her in court. She said Thorpe "robbed me of everything." She also called her son "a happy baby" whose laugh made her happy.
Prosecutors say Thorpe smothered the infant while the child was crying. Thorpe pleaded guilty to first-degree murder earlier this year.
Immigration trial set for Jerusalem bomb convict
DETROIT (AP) - A federal judge has scheduled a Nov. 4 trial for a Chicago-area Arab leader accused of covering up her conviction in a fatal terrorist bombing in Jerusalem when she entered the U.S.
Detroit U.S. District Judge Gershwin Drain on Tuesday also scheduled motion hearings for Oct. 2 and 21 in the immigration fraud case against Rasmieh Yousef Odeh.
Drain got the case after Judge Paul Borman withdrew because his family held an ownership stake in the supermarket that Odeh and others were convicted of plotting to bomb in 1969. Two men died in the blast.
Israel freed Odeh from prison after 10 years in a prisoner swap with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Now known as Rasmea Yousef, she's associate director of Chicago's Arab American Action Network.
Kirk: US must take hard line against Islamic State
CHICAGO (AP) - Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk says the United States should take a hard line against the Islamic State group.
Islamic State extremists released a video Tuesday purportedly showing the beheading of a second American journalist. It also warns President Barack Obama that as long as U.S. airstrikes against the group continue there'll be continued violence.
Kirk calls the reported beheading cruel and barbaric. He says the U.S. should take effective military action. He also told reporters Tuesday after an unrelated event in Chicago that Obama should "bomb the hell out of them."
Kirk says there's little hope that those who are in the hands of the group will return.
The Islamic State has conquered wide territory across Syria and Iraq and has declared itself a caliphate.
Gubernatorial candidates discuss jobs, veterans
CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois gubernatorial candidates are making post-Labor Day appearances with Gov. Pat Quinn publicizing efforts to spend only a minimum wage salary and Republican challenger Bruce Rauner (ROW-nur) hammering the Chicago Democrat's record on veterans.
Quinn has vowed to live on $79 for food and other expenses this week to highlight efforts to raise Illinois' $8.25 rate. He's documenting the promise on social media and told reporters Tuesday that it involves having graham crackers for dinner.
Meanwhile, Rauner says Quinn's policies have indirectly impacted veterans' unemployment. That includes a lack of economic growth that's left a higher rate of joblessness among veterans. He also claims patronage hiring has left out veteran job applicants.
Quinn says Illinois has some of the nation's best veterans' programs.
EPA OKs FutureGen plan for CO2 storage
CHICAGO (AP) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved permits for the FutureGen clean coal project to store carbon dioxide underground.
The permits approved Tuesday are a key piece of the project. FutureGen aims to capture carbon dioxide from coal at a power plant in western Illinois and store it. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas linked to climate change.
The EPA said the permits are the first of this type for carbon sequestration.
FutureGen Alliance CEO Ken Humphreys called the permits a major milestone.
The alliance has said construction recently started on parts of its long-planned $1.6 billion project in Meredosia, Illinois The U.S. Department of Energy is providing $1 billion.
The project still faces a complaint filed by the Sierra Club with the Illinois Pollution Control Board over potential air pollution.
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