Daily Archive : Thursday January 16, 2014


    Lora Kashidova, 7, of Vernon Hills keeps her balance while skating Saturday during Winter Fest at Century Park North in Vernon Hills.

    Winter Fest in Vernon Hills

    The Vernon Hills Park District hosted its Winter Fest on Saturday at Century Park North. An ice sculpting show, dog sled demonstrations and ice skating were all part of this free family event.


    Celebrate black history:

    The Lake County Forest Preserve District hosts its 31st annual Profiles in Excellence celebration of black history Feb. 2 at the Greenbelt Cultural Center near North Chicago.

    Michael Romano

    Son arrested in Algonquin Township couple's 2006 slayings

    More than seven years after he told authorities he found his parents murdered in their Cary-area home, a former Algonquin man is behind bars in a Nevada jail facing charges he killed the couple. Michael Romano, 54, was arrested Tuesday in Las Vegas after a McHenry County grand jury indicted him on four counts of first-degree murder stemming from the slayings of Nick and Gloria Romano.


    Police: 3 of 5 Elgin shooting victims out of hospital

    Three of the five victims of a shooting early Sunday near downtown Elgin have been released from the hospital, police said. Elgin police continues to investigate the shooting, which happened after the victims left a party attended by 80 to 100 people on the 200 block of North Street, near the Burger King on Dundee Avenue, Cmdr. Ana Lalley said.

    Cecilia Abadie, the California woman believed to be the first cited for wearing Google’s computer-in-an-eyeglass while driving, said she was within her rights and violated no law.

    California motorist cleared in Google Glass case

    A San Diego traffic court threw out a citation Thursday against a woman believed to be the first motorist in the country ticketed for driving while wearing a Google Glass computer-in-eyeglass device.


    Hinsdale Middle School to be closed Friday

    :Hinsdale Middle School will be closed Friday as Community Consolidated School District 181 cleans up water damage and resolves a possible mold situation stemming from two incidents involving burst pipes.

    It could be the end of an era for tollway coin buckets.

    Change in store for coin buckets on tollway

    On the tollway's bucket list for 2014 is finding replacements for the pails that collect change at ramps across the system. “They don’t make them anymore,” tollway business systems chief Shana Whitehead said Thursday at a Customer Service Committee meeting. The new order might even allow drivers to charge it.

    A carbon monoxide leak at a home on the 2900 block of Oak Brook Hills Road in Oak Brook left one person dead and sent seven to the hospital.

    1 dead, 7 in hospital after carbon monoxide leak in Oak Brook mansion

    An 84-year-old man is dead and seven women were taken to an area hospital Thursday as a result of a carbon monoxide leak in a large home on a gated street in Oak Brook, authorities said. The man was found unresponsive and seven women were taken by ambulances to Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove. “It was definitely related to carbon monoxide,” Acting Fire Chief Gary...


    Man charged in Elgin home invasion

    An Elgin man has been charged home invasion and striking a teen resident of the home, officials said. Victor M. Vega, 21, whose address was not provided by Elgin police, is accused of entering the home on the 1300 block of Concord Drive, Elgin, on Jan. 4 and beating a 17-year-old resident in the face and head, police said.


    Naperville library developing business incubation center

    Naperville library officials are developing plans for to provide space, technology and mentors for budding entrepreneurs through a new initiative called BiblioTek Centers for Innovation and Discovery, which could launch as soon as this spring. BiblioTek is imagined as a workspace within the library for innovators who are developing ideas they hope will blossom into businesses, said Julie...

    Charles Amrich

    Island Lake officials promise to make pension fund whole

    Making good on a $390,000 debt to Island Lake’s police pension fund could take village officials three or four years, Mayor Charles Amrich said Thursday night.


    Tips for preventing carbon monoxide poisoning

    Carbon monoxide poisoning, like the case that occurred Thursday in an Oak Brook home, usually occurs slowly over a period of several hours, experts say, but at very high concentrations it can kill in a matter of minutes. Here are some tips for preventing it...

    Sen, Jeff Sessions of Alabama, right, talks with Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma on Capitol Hill in this file photo from June 30, 2010. On Thursday, Coburn announced his retirement at the end of 2014.

    Okla. Sen. Coburn to retire after current session

    U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn says he plans to finish the current year in office and resign his seat nearly two years before his term is scheduled to end.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS This Sept. 15, 2013 photo shows Danielle Wade, left, and Ruth Robinison Duccini at Warner Bros. world premiere screening of “The Wizard of Oz” in IMAX 3D and the grand opening of the newly converted TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. Duccini, one of the original Munchkins from the 1939 movie “The Wizard of Oz,” died Thursday. She was 95.

    ‘Wizard of Oz’ Munchkin Duccini dies

    Ruth Robinson Duccini, the last of the original female Munchkins from the 1939 movie “The Wizard of Oz,” has died. She was 95. With her death, only one actor who played one of the original 124 Munchkins in the movie remains alive.

    A fire crew works on a fire line as a wildfire burns just north of the San Gabriel Valley community of Glendora, Calif., Thursday. Southern California authorities have ordered the evacuation of homes at the edge of a fast-moving wildfire burning in the dangerously dry foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains.

    Wildfire stops at LA suburbs as winds die down

    Santa Ana winds that fanned a campfire into a wildfire that destroyed five homes and threatened foothill neighborhoods east of Los Angeles relented Thursday afternoon, halting the blaze in its tracks.

    This 1970 photo released by courtesy of Sony Pictures Television shows, back row, from left, cast members, Shirley Jones, Dave Madden, David Cassidy, Susan Dey, and front row, from left, Brian Forster, Danny Bonaduce and Suzanne Crough of the television series, “The Partridge Family.” Madden, who played the child-hating agent on the hit 1970s sitcom, died in Florida on Thursday at age 82.

    Madden, ‘Partridge Family’ agent, dies in Florida

    Comic actor Dave Madden, who played the child-hating agent on the hit 1970s sitcom “The Partridge Family,” died in Florida on Thursday at age 82.


    Illinois expecting flood of Medicaid applications

    In a matter of days, state workers processing Medicaid applications for Illinois residents who signed up under President Barack Obama’s health care law will face a monstrous backlog as thousands of applications stuck in the once-crippled federal enrollment system are transferred.


    Felon bounced from Cook County Board ballot

    A former Chicago streets and sanitation commissioner was ruled ineligible for a run for a seat on the Cook County Board. Al Sanchez was released from federal prison in July after serving time for rigging city hiring.


    Judge: Inspector can investigate elective offices

    A judge has ruled that Cook County’s inspector general can investigate fraud, corruption and waste in the county assessor’s office and all other independent elected offices.Inspector General Pat Blanchard’s authority to investigate the tax office was challenged by Assessor Joe Berrios.

    John Olgan, 7, of Warrenville, breaks through a hard crust of snow, a type of snow students learned about Thursday during the program, “Homeschool Explorations: The Science of Snow” led by Kane County Forest Preserve naturalist Josh Libman at LeRoy Oakes Forest Preserve in St. Charles.

    ‘Snow scientists’ study at St. Charles forest preserve

    The Kane County Forest Preserve District invited home-school families to study the science of snow as part of the "Homeschool Explorations" nature program series Thursday.

    Brian Otis, Google X project lead, holds a contact lens Google is testing to explore tear glucose levels.

    Google develops contact lens glucose monitor

    Google unveiled Thursday a contact lens that monitors glucose levels in tears, a potential reprieve for millions of diabetics who have to jab their fingers to draw their own blood as many as 10 times a day.

    Former Vatican Chief Prosecutor of Clerical Sexual Abuse Charles Scicluna was grilled over clerical sexual abuse of children at the headquarters of the office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday.

    Vatican comes under sharp criticism for sex abuse

    It resembled a courtroom cross-examination, except no question was off-limits, dodging the answer wasn’t an option and the proceedings were webcast live. After decades of accusations that its culture of secrecy contributed to priest sex abuse, the Vatican was forced for the first time Thursday to defend its record in public and at length.

    Ohio used an untried combination of a sedative and a painkiller to put Dennis McGuire to death Thursday for the 1989 rape and fatal stabbing of Joy Stewart in Preble County in western Ohio.

    Ohio killer’s execution takes almost 25 minutes

    A condemned Ohio inmate appeared to gasp several times and took more than 15 minutes to die Thursday as he was executed with a combination of drugs never before tried in the U.S. Dennis McGuire’s attorney, federal public defender Allen Bohnert, called his client’s death “a failed, agonizing experiment by the state of Ohio.”

    Maurine E. Moore

    Ex-treasurer accused of Warren High School band booster theft

    Gurnee police say a four-month investigation has ended with a theft charge against a woman accused of siphoning more than $26,000 from a private, volunteer organization that provides financial assistance to Warren Township High School’s band program.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS People stnad in line waiting to enter the Supreme Court in Washington. Forty years ago, the Supreme Court decided that police don’t need a warrant to look through anything a person is carrying when arrested. But that was long before smartphones gave people the ability to take with them the equivalent of millions of documents and thousands of photos. The justices are being asked to resolve a new clash of technology and privacy in the digital age.

    High court could weigh in on cellphone searches

    The Supreme Court decided 40 years ago that police don’t need a search warrant to look through anything a person is carrying when arrested. But that was long before smartphones gave people the ability to take with them the equivalent of millions of pages of documents or thousands of photographs.

    Des Plaines Mayor Matt Bogusz chats with Pat Ahearn, left, of Rainbow Hospice and John McNabola of The Center of Concern before delivering his “Address to Business” Thursday during a Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce event at Manzo’s Banquets.

    Des Plaines mayor: Leave misperceptions of city at the door

    There’s a lot of misperceptions about Des Plaines, says Mayor Matt Bogusz, but he told local business leaders Thursday to leave them at the door, while asking for their support in helping the city achieve its goals. “Des Plaines is moving forward,” he said. “Businesses in this community are not passengers. They are an important constituency group that oftentimes is overlooked. You are all...

    Harvey L. Radney

    Metra hires firm for police chief transition

    Metra puts an experienced interim police chief in place after the agency's current chief exited Wednesday. Meanwhile, Metra's holding on to a report about the police force's overall performance.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS Before voting on the spending bill Thursday, Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz accused Senate Democrats of ignoring the problems caused by the health care law and asked the Senate to unanimously approve an amendment to strip out Obamacare funding. The amendement was defeated.

    Senate easily passes $1.1 trillion spending bill

    Congress sent President Barack Obama a $1.1 trillion government-wide spending bill Thursday, easing the harshest effects of last year’s automatic budget cuts after tea party critics chastened by October’s partial shutdown mounted only a faint protest.


    Libertyville considers changes to car dealer incentive program

    Libertyville is considering adjusting an incentive plan for car dealers, originally approved in 2008, that allows for rebates of "new" sales tax for improvements to their facilities. Sales have not increased as expected and tweaks are needed to stick to the original goal of keeping dealers in town and investing in their properties.


    Fox Valley police reports
    Leticia Sotelo, 37, of Elgin, was arrested Wednesday at a big box store in the 300 block of South Randall Road and charged with retail theft, according to a police report.

    Shawn Gosa

    Man who stole from Aurora mall, shoved cop, sent to prison

    A 45-year-old Chicago man with a long criminal history was sentenced to 6.5 years in prison Thursday after his conviction for felony retail theft and aggravated battery to a police officer. Shawn Gosa was convicted of shoving a police officer after stealing $900 worth of merchandise in 2011 from Chicago Premium Outlets in Aurora.


    What’s next - if anything - for Barrington 220 advisory council?

    Following the decision to change the academic calendar for Barrington School District 220 schools, the question facing the Input 220 Advisory Council — a special panel of community members created to examine the calendar issue — is what topic, if any, is next. District 220 school board members meeting this week offered different takes on the council’s future.


    Barrington theater screening Oscar-nominated short films March 1

    Barrington-area movie lovers will have insider access to two of the most compelling and hardest to see Oscar-nominated film categories — Best Animated Short Film and Best Live Action Short Film — on Saturday, March 1. A screening of the five films from each category nominated for 2014 Academy Awards will run from noon to 4 p.m. at The Catlow Theater, 114 W. Main St. in downtown Barrington.

    Brent Vincent Betterly, from left, Jared Chase and Brian Church are charged with conspiracy to commit terrorism and providing material support for terrorism.

    Jury selected for trial of NATO protesters

    The jury has been selected for the trial of three activists charged with terrorism after the 2012 NATO summit in Chicago. Opening statements are scheduled for Tuesday.


    Schools want out of SEDOL:

    The Lake County regional school board will hold a special meeting Jan. 28 to discuss whether three local districts should be allowed to withdraw from the Special Education District of Lake County.


    ‘Frost Fest’:

    The Gurnee Park District hosts it’s annual “Frosty Fest” on Friday, Jan. 17, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at Bittersweet Golf Course, 875 Almond Road, Gurnee.


    Gurnee police alcohol checks:

    Establishments selling alcohol did quite well when Gurnee police conducted a recent check regarding possible sales to minors.


    Illinois delays start of income tax filing season

    Illinois revenue officials say residents won’t be able to file their 2013 income taxes until the end of January — a two-week delay.

    Chris Shields, 53, of Champaign poses with a plaque and softball after he set the Guinness World Records Book mark for catching a softball from the greatest height.

    Softball record set in eastern Illinois

    A Champaign man has set the new Guinness World Records Book mark for catching a softball from the greatest height. Chris Shields managed to catch a softball tossed out of an ultralight plane hovering 250 feet above the ground.

    Christopher Whetstone

    Officials: Aurora man killed girlfriend in domestic dispute

    Aurora police say they took Christopher Whetstone into custody Monday night about 10 minutes after he is accused of shooting and killing a woman who had been his girlfriend. Now the Aurora man is facing a first-degree murder charge.


    Legislation would create animal abuser directory

    A state lawmaker from Chicago has introduced legislation that’d create a list of people who’ve been convicted of animal cruelty charges.


    Quinn creates Illinois health innovation office

    Gov. Pat Quinn has created a new state office to oversee changes in health care, including efforts to expand the workforce and restructure services for people with disabilities.


    Landfill to help pay medical bills after leak

    Waste Management landfill officials say they’ll help pay medical bills after an odor from their landfill sickened more than 60 students, teachers and staff at a school near DeKalb.

    Derrick Smith

    Bribery trial delayed for Chicago Democrat

    A Chicago federal judge has delayed the bribery trial of state Rep. Derrick Smith after prosecutors said they needed time to locate phone records.


    Digital media lab set to open at Naperville library

    A digital media lab the Naperville Public Library is creating for 95th Street Library patrons is set to open sometime next month. Julie Rothenfluh, executive director, said the digital media lab plans to host an open house sometime in February so people can get expert assistance and firsthand experience with programs such as iMovie, GarageBand, Adobe InDesign and Adobe Photoshop as well as a new...


    Help name new Arlington Hts., Mount Prospect dog park

    If you have a witty way with words, the Arlington Heights and Mount Prospect park districts are hoping you can come up with a name for their new playground for pups scheduled to open in June. The park districts are asking residents can submit suggested names Jan. 20 and Feb. 3 for their new shared dog park planned for Melas Park, 1500 W. Central Road.

    Wheaton Mayor Mike Gresk says the opening of Wheaton 121, a luxury apartment development with 306 units at the corner of Cross and Front streets, was one of the highlights of the past year.

    Mayor says Wheaton made great progress in 2013

    There’s one word Wheaton Mayor Michael Gresk says he can use to describe the city’s past year: Progress. “As we look back at the past year in Wheaton and the progress made, I look forward to what 2014 will bring,” he said Thursday during his annual State of the City address at Arrowhead Golf Club.

    Dimitri J. Hosey-Green

    Two Joliet brothers charged in Aurora slaying

    Two Joliet brothers have been charged with murder and are being held on at least $100,000 bond each in connection with the shooting death of a 20-year-old man Monday night in a restaurant on Aurora’s west side. A Kane County judge on Thursday set bond at $150,000 for Dimitri J. Hosey-Green, 18, and at $100,000 for Jaquan D. Hosey-Green, 19. The suspects were kept in jail during the hearing and...


    Long Grove man pleads not guilty to new charges in fatal DUI crash

    A Long Grove man accused of being intoxicated during a September crash that killed a woman pleaded not guilty in Lake County court Thursday to three new counts of reckless homicide.

    Jose Rebollar-Vergara

    Suspect in Round Lake Beach murder rejects plea deal

    A Round Lake Park man rejected a plea deal Thursday that would have sent him to prison for about five years for his involvement in the murder of a Zion teen last March. Jose Rebollar-Vergara, 25, also asked Lake County Judge Daniel Shanes if he could hire a private attorney for his case.

    Billy Varner

    Antioch double murder trial delayed, DNA request granted

    The trial for an Antioch man accused of killing his mother and wife in October was pushed back until May. However, prosecutors were given permission by a judge to take a DNA sample from Billy Varner, 54. The sample, prosecutors said, is to match other DNA discovered in the apartment where the brutal murders took place.

    Mark E. Swienton

    Aurora man faces prison pleading guilty in smash-and-grab burglaries

    A 49-year-old Aurora man this week pleaded guilty to two smash-and-grab burglaries in St. Charles and Aurora last year and faces up to seven years in prison when sentenced March 26. Authorities arrested Mark E. Swienton, who has burglary convictions dating back to 1989, in March after getting a judge's permission to place a tracking device on his vehicle.

    Longtime coach Ted Wissen with his daughter, Jo Ann Jennings.

    Northwest suburban coach preached hard work and dedication

    Ted Wissen, a legendary coach who helped shape basketball and football programs at four different Northwest suburban high schools, has died. “Ted touched so many young lives in (Northwest Suburban High School) District 214,” said Bob Frisk, who covered high school sports for 50 years for the Daily Herald. “He truly played a huge role in the tremendous growth of high school...

    Aurora Library Director Eva Luckinbill, left, pictured with Secretary of State Jesse White and legislator Linda Chapa LaVia, has announced she’s stepping down after nearly 15 years at the helm.

    Aurora Library director stepping down after 15 years at helm

    Longtime Aurora Public Library Executive Director Eva Luckinbill has announced she will retire before the end of the year after roughly 17 years with the library, including nearly 15 as director.

    My old high school not only had this Rebel as a mascot, we raised banners reading “The South Will Rise Again,” called the student newspaper the “Stars and Bars,” and flew a confederate flag on the school flagpole.

    Clark the Cub: Maybe not the worst mascot ever

    Worst mascot ever? Burt Constable thinks Clark the Cub has plenty of competition. And they all seem better than his old high school's mascot.


    Mail delivery back to normal in Elk Grove

    Mail service has been fully restored in Elk Grove Village after residents and business owners complained they weren’t getting their mail during portions of last week and the week before, officials said. Mayor Craig Johnson said village offices received some two dozen phone calls reporting a lack of mail delivery, which lasted up to three consecutive days in some parts of town.


    Dist. 220 honors teachers for national certification

    Three Barrington Unit School District 220 teachers who recently received a national teaching certification were recognized for their accomplishments by the district’s board of education this week. Cristi Barry, of North Barrington Elementary; Jennifer Conant, of Hough Street Elementary; and Colleen Zenner, of Barrington High School, earned National Board Certification by the National Board for...

    State Sen. Kirk Dillard, second from right, speaks, as from left, Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford, State Sen. Bill Brady and businessman Bruce Rauner listen at DuPage County Republican Day last fall in Bloomingdale.

    GOP governor candidates forum: watch live at 8 a.m.

    The four Republican candidates for governor will talk business issues in Mount Prospect this morning, in the first forum of the 2014 campaign where all will be in the same room. You can watch the video streaming online.

    Gurnee Police Chief Kevin Woodside, left, and Mayor Kristina Kovarik were accompanied by officer Kelly Hansen at the village hall when they presented Saved by the Safety Belt honors to Anna Della Posta, far right, and her daughter, Jasmine Washington.

    Gurnee mom, daughter recognized for safety belt use in serious crash

    Two Gurnee residents recently recognized for doing the right thing by wearing their seat belts in a serious vehicle crash.


    Up to 100,000 dead fish in Nevada marina mystery

    SPARKS, Nev. — State wildlife officials are trying to figure out why all the fish have died in a northern Nevada marina where the stocked fishery has flourished since the man-made lake was created nearly 15 years ago.As many as 100,000 trout, bass and catfish have died over the past month in the Sparks Marina along U.S. Interstate 80 east of Reno, apparently the result of a...


    Barrington Fire Department rises to new role

    The Barrington Fire Department has experienced not only a smooth transition to a single-village agency in 2014, but an opportunity to go above and beyond the call of duty, Fire Chief Jim Arie said. During last Friday's slippery evening commute, paramedics helped blaze a trail with road salt for a woman in a motorized scooter making her way back home to the Greencastle of Barrington assisted...


    Geneva considering all-day kindergarten

    The Geneva school board is again considering whether to institute all-day kindergarten. The next meeting to discuss the issue is Jan. 27.

    Police officials escort an accused in the gang rape of a 51-year-old Danish tourist as they walk out of a court in New Delhi, India, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014.

    India police close in on homeless men in gang rape

    Indian police said Thursday that they were closing in on six homeless men in the gang rape of a 51-year-old Danish tourist in New Delhi, a case that highlights the plague of sexual violence in the country and threatens to tarnish its tourism industry.

    An overwhelming majority of Egyptians who voted on the country’s new constitution have backed the draft charter, a senior Egyptian official said Thursday.

    Official: Egyptian voters have backed new charter

    An overwhelming majority of Egyptians who voted on the country’s new constitution have backed the draft charter, a senior Egyptian official said Thursday while an international monitoring group criticized the clampdown ahead of the vote and said authorities had imposed “severe limits” on freedom of expression.

    Troy Tucker, center of Roswell, N.M., holds his daughters Emily Tucker, left age 10, and Hannah Tucker, right age 12, during a community prayer vigil for the victims of the Berrendo Middle School shooting in Roswell, N.M., Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014.

    NM detectives dig for answers; classes to resume

    Investigators have turned up evidence that the 12-year-old boy who opened fire on a crowd of students in a New Mexico middle school gym had planned the attack and warned some classmates to stay away moments before the gunfire rang out.

    U.S. officials have received a new video of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl that they believe was taken within the last month, showing that the soldier is alive. The video came to light several days ago, said one senior defense official.

    Video sparks hope for captured soldier’s family

    The family of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was captured more than four years ago in Afghanistan, says a new video of the soldier believed to have been taken in the last month has bolstered its resolve to bring him home safely to Idaho.

    Deandre Kelley, a Cincinnati man charged with fatally shooting his 11-year-old daughter, wants a judge to let him out of jail to attend her funeral.

    Ohio dad who shot daughter, 11, seeks funeral pass

    A Cincinnati man charged with fatally shooting his 11-year-old daughter wants a judge to let him out of jail to attend her funeral.

    Kari Hunt Dunn. Her 9-year-old daughter tried to call 911 from the hotel room where she could hear her mother dying but didn’t know to dial 9 first.

    FCC member studies Texas 911 dialing case

    A Texas grandfather’s initiative to allow hotel guests to dial 911 without having to press 9 first — spurred by his granddaughter’s inability to call for help when her mother was stabbed to death — has prompted a federal official to reach out to major hotels.

    Benoit Paire of France pours water over his face during a break in his second round match against Nick Kyrgios of Australia at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014.

    Extreme heat brings Australian Open to a halt

    The scorching weather finally brought play to a halt on the fourth day of the Australian Open when the temperature topped 109 degrees, but not soon enough for some players who criticized officials for not stopping matches earlier.

    Jonathan Steele, owner of Bluegrass Kitchen, fills a jug with cleaning water in the back of his restaurant in Charleston, W.Va., Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014. Steele installed a large tank in the back of his restaurant and was able to open using bottled water on Sunday.

    W.Va. spill shows vulnerability of water supply

    It’s a nightmare scenario that became all too real in West Virginia: A chemical seeped into the water supply and threatened to sicken hundreds of thousands of people. While no one became seriously ill from last week’s chemical spill, some homeland security experts said the emergency was proof the United States has not done nearly enough to protect water systems from accidental spills or...

    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s administration has hired a law firm to assist with an internal review in the wake of an apparent political payback scandal.

    Christie administration to conduct review

    Gov. Chris Christie’s administration has hired a law firm to assist with an internal review in the wake of an apparent political payback scandal.

    This image from the video camera of a San Francisco fire battalion firetruck at the scene of the crash of Asiana Flight 214 on July 6, 2013, shows a firefighter directing the firetruck around the body of passenger Ye Meng Yuan at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco.

    SFC crash rescuer saw girl before she was run over

    Video from the helmet camera of a firefighter responding to the crash landing of an Asiana Airlines flight in San Francisco shows at least one rescuer was aware someone was on the ground outside the aircraft and even warned a colleague. Yet two fire trucks subsequently ran over an injured passenger.

    Cook of the Week Challenge champion Dan Rich of Elgin is shown with vegetables from his garden. Rich will be on hand at a Daily Herald event to help demonstrate creative snacking ideas for Super Bowl parties.

    Learn to make super snacks for the Super Bowl

    What will you be eating while you sit on the couch in front of your wide screen TV on Super Bowl Sunday? Learn to move beyond the same old chips and dip and pick up some tips for creative snacking at Super Snacks for the Super Bowl, set for 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19, at the Northern Illinois Food Bank in Geneva.


    Is fear holding you back?

    Fear of failure likes to torment all age groups, says columnist Annettee Budzban. When fears threaten us, we should ask God for guidance, she says.


    Dawn Patrol: Murder charge in Aurora shooting, 2 questioned in another

    Aurora man charged in woman’s murder. Frozen body may be missing Geneva man's, police say. Man accidentally shoots Beach Park partygoer. Demand for concealed carry keeps growing. Dist. 214 mourns death of longtime social worker. Kane County unveils pre-game concert series. Bulls beat Magic in triple overtime.

    Libertyville Public Works Superintendent Marty Wittrock monitors salt at the village’s storage units Wednesday. The village, like other communities, has ordered more salt to keep pace with the weather.

    Frequent storms have suburbs watching salt supplies

    Frequent storms have eaten away at local salt supplies and many communities are wary of more storms. To keep pace, many communities, including Libertyville, Gurnee, Schaumburg and Wheaton, have ordered more salt. Others, including Naperville, Vernon Hills, and Elgin, started the year with a surplus. “What’s a normal year now?” asked Kevin Kerrigan, of Lake County.


    Chicago Bulls' Joakim Noah (13) slaps hands with teammate Kirk Hinrich after sinking a shot during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic in Orlando, Fla., Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014. Chicago won in triple overtime, 128-125. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

    Tough to root for these hard-working to lose

    Even though it goes against what’s best for the organization down the road, there’s something refreshing about these Bulls. Low-key, hard-working … and man, they never give up! Gotta admit I’m digging it.


    Thursday’s wrestling scoreboard
    Here are the varsity boys wrestling results from Thursday as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s girls gymnastics scoreboard
    Here are the varsity girls gymnastics results from Thursday's events, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s girls basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Thursday's varsity girls basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s boys swimming scoreboard
    Here are varsity boys swimming results from Thursday's meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s boys basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Thursday's varsity boys basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Record performances from Libertyville at Warren

    Libertyville’s relays made quite the splash Thursday night. The foursome of Northwestern-bound Alex Snarski, Atticus Rush, Matt Harrington and Bobby Snader set three pool records in leading the host Wildcats to a 115-70 win over Warren.

    St. Charles North's Ross Davis won the 200-yard IM against St. Charles East on Thursday at St. Charles North.

    St. Charles North keeps its streak alive

    When a team hasn't lost to its crosstown rival for more than a decade, there is some pressure – and St. Charles North certainly felt it heading into Thursday's meet against St. Charles East.

    Mark Black/mblack@dailyherald.com Zach Incaudo of Neuqua Valley lays up for a shot against Metea Valley during boys basketball.

    Neuqua Valley stays calm, overcomes Metea Valley

    Neuqua Valley used a fourth-quarter run to outdistance itself from District 204 rival Metea Valley on Thursday night. The Mustangs had just cut the Wildcats’ lead down to 2 with three minutes to go before Neuqua Valley went on an 11-1 run over the next two minutes, eventually leading to a 59-49 victory in Upstate Eight Valley play.


    Antioch enjoys NBA road trip

    It was bye week last week for Antioch. But the Sequoits said hello to a game floor anyway. An NBA floor, that is. Head coach Jim White and his players made the short drive up to Milwaukee and took in an NBA game between the host Bucks and the Chicago Bulls.


    Grayslake Central homes in on fine Fox Division record

    The road is becoming like a second home to Grayslake Central. The Rams will be traveling again this weekend, this time to Dundee-Crown on Friday. On the season, 14 games in, Grayslake Central has had just two home games. “We have only eight home games on the season,” Grayslake Central coach Brian Moe said. “Next year we’ll have more at home, but this year, it’s been a lot on the road.” The imbalance hasn’t necessarily thrown the Rams off. They are 7-7 overall but a sparkling 4-0 in the Fox Valley Fox Division. They are the only team in the Fox with a .500 record or better.

    Stevenson forward Taylor Buford heads downcourt after taking a rebound away from Libertyville center Becky Deichl on Thursday at Stevenson.

    Stevenson perpetuates winning approach

    A former Stevenson girls basketball captain sat in her alma mater’s gymnasium bleachers Thursday night. And the impact Katie Batman had on the 2011-12 Patriots wasn’t lost on a then-freshman who was also on varsity that season. “She taught me how to be a leader,” Stevenson junior guard Taylor Buford said after helping the Patriots capture a 52-31 decision over visiting Libertyville that hiked their record to 13-5 and 6-1 in the North Suburban Conference Lake Division.


    Smith’s big effort lifts Vernon Hills

    Sydney Smith dropped in a game-high 24 points and grabbed 7 rebounds, and Vernon Hills’ girls basketball team won its third straight game Thursday night, defeating host Lakes 54-32.

    Naperville North’s Jayson Winick drives around Benet’s Collin Pellettieri during in boys basketball in Naperville Sunday.

    Naperville North feeling up to the task of DVC schedule

    Last weekend Glenbard North and Wheaton North became the latest teams to fall at the hands of West Aurora, which remains the lone unbeaten team in the DuPage Valley Conference. Now it’s Naperville North’s turn to take its best shot at the Blackhawks (10-3, 5-0).


    St. Charles North routs Streamwood

    The St. Charles North boys basketball team certainly wasn’t going to get caught looking ahead to rival St. Charles East. The North Stars scored the game’s first 7 points Thursday night, led by 31 in the second quarter and held Streamwood scoreless in the third quarter en route to a 70-26 Upstate Eight River victory over the Sabres.

    Dundee-Crown’s DaShun Lloyd brings down Jacobs’ Michael Bujocz Thursday in the 170-pound match in Algonquin. Bujocz was awarded the win after the referees determined Lloyd lost consciousness during the match and by rule was disqualified.

    Dundee-Crown battles past Jacobs

    Things went pretty much according to form, which added up to a dual-meet win for Dundee-Crown. The Chargers dominated the middle weights, then survived a late rally by Jacobs for the 39-28 win in Fox Valley Conference Valley Division wrestling action Thursday in Algonquin.

    Jackie Kemph

    Girls basketball: Week 6 MVPs

    Rolling Meadows senior guard Jackie Kemph has been selected as the Daily Herald’s MVP for her recent basketball performances.

    Dom Adduci

    Boys basketball: Week 6 MVPs

    St. Charles East senior guard Dom Adduci has earned Daily Herald MVP honors for his recent boys basketball performances.


    Chicago State powers past New Mexico State 86-81

    Clarke Rosenberg scored 20 points and Quinton Pippen added 19 with eight rebounds as Chicago State defeated New Mexico State 86-81 Thursday night.The Cougars (8-9, 3-0 WAC) shot 54.9 percent from the field and were 8 of 12 from beyond the arc. Matt Ross scored 17 points, Nate Duhon contributed 12 and Corey Gray had 10 for Chicago State.New Mexico State (14-6, 3-1) outrebounded Chicago State 36-26 and hit 10 3-pointers, but also had 19 turnovers. Daniel Mullings paced the Aggies with 26 points, Kevin Aronis chipped in 15 and Tshilidzi Nephawe had 12 points with 12 boards.With less than two minutes remaining, Duhon hit two free throws and Pippen nailed a 3-pointer to give Chicago State a four-point lead. The Aggies pulled within one after an Aronis 3-pointer with 10 seconds left, but DK Eldridge turned it over following two Duhon free throws.


    Milwaukee slips past UIC in 67-63 win

    Jordan Aaron scored 18 points to lead the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee to a 67-63 come-from-behind win over University of Illinois-Chicago on Thursday night.


    Hauser, Jacobs help Fremd pin loss on Glenbrook South

    The powerful one-two punch of Cody Hauser and Alex Jacobs were at the heart of a pin frenzy by Fremd on Thursday night as the Vikings claimed a 40-30 victory over visiting Glenbrook South in nonconference wrestling action. The pair jump-started the Vikings during the early stages, with Hauser (16-2) recording a fall at 1:07 before the Jacobs (18-1), a sophomore, needed one second more to put away Ali Shegarfi to put the hosts up for good at 13-9.

    Stevenson guard Jessica Burke, left, steals the ball away from Libertyville guard Mary Wilterdink .

    Images: Stevenson vs. Libertyville girls basketball
    The Stevenson Patriots hosted the Libertyville Wildcats for girls basketball action on Thursday, January 16 in Lincolnshire.


    SIU-Edwardsville rallies to beat Austin Peay 71-67

    Rozell Nunn scored 15 points Thursday night, including a game-winning three-point play, as SIU-Edwarsdville rallied to beat Austin Peay 71-67.

    Justin Kuehn of Metea Valley drives with the ball as Elijah Robertson of Neuqua Valley follows close behind.

    Images: Metea Valley at Neuqua Valley boys basketball
    Neuqua Valley hosted Metea Valley Thursday, Jan. 16 for boys basketball

    Mark Welsh/mwelsh@dailyherald.com Hersey’s Connor Reynolds checks the time after a winning effort in the 200-yard medley relay Thursday against Buffalo Grove.

    Hersey’s cast of characters measures up against BG

    Hersey's cast of characters, including Mr. Consistent, an Unsung Hero and the Next Men Up helped make the difference in a 97-89 victory over Buffalo Grove in boys swimming and diving at Olympic Pool in Arlington Heights.


    Elgin claims UEC title

    UEC position night: Elgin capped off its Upstate Eight Conference boys bowling championship season Thursday by finishing third at the UEC position night event. St. Charles East won the gathering. South Elgin placed second. Elgin won the overall UEC title with a 41-2 record. The Maroons came into the meet undefeated in conference play. Curtis Majka led the Maroons with a 757 series. He rolled a 290 first game with 11 strikes in a row. He also had games of 234 and 233. Lowell Lynde IV finished with a 597 series. JJ Meyer bowled a 578 series, while Michael Bator rolled a 552 series. Vince Kelly rolled a 557 series and Justin Winteroth rolled a 546 for coach Jon Miquelon’s squad.

    Lake Zurich’s Brad Kruse, left, battles Libertyville’s Joe Borcia for a rebound.

    Easy to account for Kruse’s basketball focus

    Lake Zurich's versatile senior Brad Kruse tests well on and off the basketball court. In both respects, he's following in the footsteps of his father, who excelled as a prep player at Buffalo Grove.


    (No heading)
    NoticeTo report scores:Coaches, please report all scores to the Daily Herald Lake County office by emailing prepsports@dailyherald.com, faxing results to (847) 680-0189, or calling our sports hotline at (847) 573-2765.When faxing results, please make sure that results are legible, and include names and statistics for all teams involved.Girls basketball Thursday’s results STEVENSON, LIBERTYVILLELibertyville — . Totals .Stevenson — . Totals .Libertyville x x x x —xxStevenson x x x x —xx3-point baskets: .Fouled out: .VERNON HILLS, LAKESVernon Hills — . Totals .Lakes — . Totals .Vernon Hills x x x x —xxLakes x x x x —xx3-point baskets: .Fouled out: .(1 OT)Visitor — . Totals .Home — . Totals .Visitor x x x x x — xxHome x x x x x — xx3-point baskets: .Fouled out: .(2 OT)Visitor — . Totals .Home — . Totals .Visitor x x x x x x—xxHome x x x x x x—xx3-point baskets: .Fouled out: .WrestlingThursday’s results106:113:120:126:132:138:145:152:160:170:182: 195:220:285:Boys swimmingThursday’s results200 medley relay:200 free:200 IM:50 free: Diving:100 fly:100 free:500 free:200 free relay:100 back:100 breast:400 free relay:JV:Boys bowlingThursday’s resultsTeam — Team — Girls bowlingThursday’s resultsTeam — Team — Girls gymnasticsThursday’s resultsMUNDELEIN 138.05, STEVENSON 134.15Vault — 1. Kehr (Mund) 9.55, 2. Shank (Stev) 9.25, 3. Rizzo (Mund) 9.15.Uneven bars — 1. Shank (Stev) 9.30, 2. Kehr (Mund) 9.00, 3. Webb (Stev) 8.50.Balance beam — 1. Kehr (Mund) 9.05, 2. Weisberg (Stev) 8.85, 3. Shank (Stev) 8.45.Floor exercise — 1. Kehr (Mund) 9.40, 2. Weisberg (Stev) 9.30, tie, Shank (Stev) 9.30.All-around — 1. Kehr (Mund) 37.00, 2. Shank 36.30, 3. Weisberg 35.35.Vault — Uneven bars — Balance beam — Floor exercise — All-around — JV — Upcoming eventsTODAYBOYS BASKETBALLMLK tournament at Washington Washington vs. Grayslake North, 7 p.m.Antioch at Lakes, 7 p.m.Grant at Vernon Hills, 7 p.m.Grayslake Central at Dundee-Crown, 7 p.m.Zion-Benton at Libertyville, 7 p.m.Lake Forest at Stevenson, 7 p.m.Wauconda at North Chicago, 7:30 p.m.wrestlingSt. Patrick, Notre Dame at Carmel, 5:15 p m.Grayslake Central at Grayslake North, 6:30 p.m.Libertyville at Lake Zurich, 6 p.m.Lakes at Mundelein, 5:30 p.m.Round Lake at North Chicago, 5:30 p.m.Stevenson at Lake Forest, 6 p.m.Zion-Benton at Warren, 5:30 p.m.GIRLS BASKETBALLGrayslake Central at Johnsburg, 7 p.m.Wauconda at Round Lake, 7 p.m.

    Marco Franco

    Fire drafts ‘driven, happy0go-lucky’ Franco

    New Fire coach and director of soccer Frank Yallop thinks he found a pretty good player in Marco Franco in Thursday’s MLS SuperDraft. He can’t wait to find out for sure.

    Brent Seabrook and Corey Crawford react following a goal by Montreal’s Andrei Markov during an overtime loss last week. The Hawks are 4-11 in overtimes and shootouts this season.

    Hawks coach: Playing from behind must change

    The Blackhawks have trailed in their last five games, losing four of them, and head coach Joel Queneville would like to see some scoring at the start along with some stronger defensive play. “There’s been a certain trend in place here of not scoring first. I still think the last few games we’ve done some good things, but certainly playing catch up, I don’t think any team plays well from behind,” Quenneville said. Tim Sassone has more in today's Blackhawks notebook.


    Huntley improving with every match

    The Huntley wrestling team has put together an impressive body of work thus far this season. To start the week, the Red Raiders were 14-1 overall in duals and 2-1 in Fox Valley Conference Valley Division action. Huntley also has fared well in tournament action, placing third out of 10 teams at Fenton, third out of 15 at Harvard and fifth out of 25 at Sycamore.

    New Cubs manager Rick Renteria admitted Thursday that he was part of the Cubs’ delegation that met recently with star free-agent Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka in Los Angeles

    Renteria willing to learn a little Japanese to woo star pitcher

    New Cubs manager Rick Renteria said Thursday he was part of a delegation that met with Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka to try to lure the right-hander to Chicago. Renteria mentioned that he even ordered Rosett Stone in an effort to learn some Japanese. The Cubs open spring training in less than a month, and Renteria said he wants to set a productive tone.

    Larkin’s Brayden Royse (30) and Christian Negron will be among those looking to stop Benet Academy’s Sean O’Mara Saturday when the Royals travel to Lisle to take on the Redwings.

    Larkin ready for challenge from O’Mara, Benet

    Following last Friday’s convincing win at No. 16 Neuqua Valley, No. 4 Larkin faces another tough road test at No. 7 Benet Academy on Saturday. The challenge facing Larkin (14-2) senior forwards Drew Jones (6-5), Brayden Royse (6-5) and freshman Christian Negron (6-5) is Benet 6-foot-9 center Sean O’Mara. Committed to Xavier, O’Mara scored 17 points last Friday in the Redwings’ 61-56 win at No. 8 York (14-2). Like Benet (9-4), Larkin has played a tough nonconference schedule, including games against Morgan Park and Zion-Benton. However, the Royals have yet to face a big man as skilled as O’Mara.

    Jimmy Butler takes a shot against Orlando during the first half of the Bulls’ triple-overtime win Wednesday. Butler logged a team record 60 minutes, 20 seconds and scored 21 points.

    How will marathon man Butler respond Friday?

    Jimmy Butler set a franchise record by playing more than 60 minutes in Wednesday's triple-overtime victory at Orlando. Now the question is whether he and his teammates can recover in time to play back-to-back games this weekend.

    Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews tried to screen Anaheim Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller when the teams met last month in Chicago. The Ducks, who won that game 3-2, have a six-point lead on the Blackhawks in the Western Conference.

    Can Hawks slow down high-flying Ducks?

    Friday’s game between the Blackhawks and Anaheim Ducks is just about as big as they come during the NHL’s long regular season. The Ducks are hotter than any team in the league, having won 18 of their last 19 games, including a 9-1 blowout of Vancouver on Wednesday — a game in which they scored 6 power-play goals. Anaheim has won eight games in a row and leads the Hawks by 6 points in the Western Conference standings (77-71).


    Marmion’s Jimenez seeks historic 4th state title

    On Dec. 29, the Chicago Bears honored each of the eight football state champions during halftime at Soldier Field. Class 6A champion Batavia enjoyed the spotlight.

    Mark Black/mblack@dailyherald.com ¬ Alina Lehocky of Vernon Hills and Kathleen Doyle of Benet Academy tumble after the ball, during the 23rd annual McDonald's Shootout at Willowbrook High School, Monday.

    Basketball fans eager to eat up full weekend of action

    Suddenly craving a Big Mac? So is “Eyes on Five” as we take a look at this weekend’s 24th annual McDonald’s girls basketball shootout at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park. On the boys side, meanwhile, we catch up with some old favorites.

    FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2013, file photo, New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, right, talks to quarterback Tom Brady during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Foxborough, Mass. No name stirs up quite as much angst and anger around Denver as McDaniels. The former Broncos coach, now offensive coordinator for the Patriots, left havoc in the wake of his two-year stint in Denver, and has a chance to leave another scar when the Patriots meet the Broncos in the AFC championship game on Sunday. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

    McDaniels tries to stick another dagger in Denver

    For a brief time, Josh McDaniels was a celebrity in Denver and he played the part with gusto — running to the corner of the stadium after his first signature win and pumping his fists at the crowd to celebrate. “This doesn’t mean a whole lot unless you can share it with somebody,” McDaniels said that day. “Sometimes, you’re allowed to have fun.”The fun ended almost as quickly as it began.

    Painters put the finishing touches on a Seattle Seahawks' logo on the turf at CenturyLink Field in preparation for the NFL football NFC championship game in Seattle, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014. The Seahawks play the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

    Let’s get nasty: 49ers vs. Seahawks

    Packers-Bears. Steelers-Browns. Cowboys vs. anybody in the NFC East.Those are long-standing NFL rivalries. Add to them 49ers-Seahawks, with a history of nastiness emanating from the college ranks for their coaches, and a hefty animosity built up in annual doubleheaders in their division. Now they meet for a spot in the Super Bowl. Are those hard feelings for real?

    Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo takes a shot prior to the Celtics' NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors, in Boston on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014. Rondo took a step toward returning to action on Wednesday, working out with members of Boston's NBA Development League team at the Celtics' practice facility earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

    Rondo ready to return Friday ‘barring setback’

    Rajon Rondo’s rehab continues.And now it will take place in live NBA games.The Boston Celtics’ point guard, who has not played since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee last Jan. 25, is scheduled to return on Friday night. Coach Brad Stevens and general manager Danny Ainge both said Rondo would return for the game against the Los Angeles Lakers “barring any setbacks.”


    Police: Hernandez eyed as gunman in 2012 slayings

    A search warrant request indicates that Boston police have been investigating whether former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez may have been the gunman in a 2012 double slaying.

    FILE - In this Oct. 28, 2009, file photo, Philadelphia Phillies' Pedro Feliz, left, and Jimmy Rollins watch in the background, as umpires discuss a call at first base during the fifth inning in Game 1 of the baseball's World Series against the New York Yankees in New York. Major League Baseball announced Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, that it will greatly expand instant replay to review close calls starting this season. Each manager will be allowed to challenge at least one call per game. If he's right, he gets another challenge. After the seventh inning, a crew chief can request a review on his own. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)

    MLB approves expanded replay starting this season

    Ever since the game was invented, before television or even radio existed, baseball counted on the eyes and ears of umpires on the field. Starting this season, many key decisions will be made in a studio far away.Major League Baseball vaulted into the 21st century of technology on Thursday, approving a huge expansion of instant replay in hopes of eliminating blown calls that riled up players, managers and fans.


    Mike North video: This weekend’s NFL playoff predictions
    Mike North cautiously makes his picks for this weekend’s NFL playoffs.


    Kanzler leads the way for Grant

    Girls basketballGrant 66, Round Lake 36: Kaylie Kanzler scored 23 points, as the host Bulldogs won the North Suburban Prairie contest.Grant (6-11, 3-3) also received 11 points apiece from Kaitlyn Wold and Jasmine Sangster.Justice Clark scored 12 points for Round Lake (3-15, 0-7).


    Lake Zurich subdues Streamwood

    Lake Zurich’s basketball team overcame an early deficit to knock off host Streamwood 56-34 in an MLK tournament game Wednesday night. Mike Travlos scored a game-high 19 points to lead the Bears (10-7), who trailed 11-3 midway through the opening quarter. Coach Billy Pitcher then called a timeout, and the visitors were up 12-11 heading into the second quarter.


    thinkstockphotos.com Illinois ranked near the bottom of the nation at 45th place with a D in the 2014 American College of Emergency Physicians' state-by-state report card on America's emergency care environment.

    Illinois drops from 27th to 45th place for its lack of support for emergency patients

    Illinois ranked near the bottom of the nation at 45th place with a D in the 2014 American College of Emergency Physicians' (ACEP) state-by-state report card on America's emergency care environment. It's a striking decline from the 27th place and grade C it received in 2009.

    Rosebud Old World Italian restaurant in Schaumburg has been sold, but its new owner says the eatery will stay open with the same name and menu for the short term. New owner Andy-John Kalkounos said he hopes to have a new brand in place by April 1, but expects it to continue serving Italian cuisine.

    Schaumburg’s Rosebud restaurant gets a new owner, will remain open

    The Rosebud Old World Italian restaurant in Schaumburg has been sold and will soon have a new identity, but in the short term, customers aren’t likely to notice many changes. New owner Andy-John Kalkounos said Thursday the restaurant will remain open as Rosebud for the near future as he makes improvements both in and out of the building.

    Facebook will add trending topics to its website to let users know what other users are posting about at the moment.

    Facebook adds trending topics to site

    In a move that echoes Twitter, Facebook is adding a feature to its service that lets users know the topics of discussion that are trending among the site’s 1.2 billion users, whether it’s the death of a world leader or the Oscars.

    United Airlines said Thursday it will furlough 688 flight attendants after it didn’t get enough people to take a voluntary buyout. United has said it wants to cut $2 billion in annual expenses.

    United to furlough 688 flight attendants

    Chicago-based United Airlines plans to furlough 688 flight attendants after it didn’t get enough of them to take a voluntary buyout. The airline has been shrinking a little, and it announced last year it is aiming to cut $2 billion in annual expenses. It has offered voluntary buyouts to flight attendants and some ground workers were offered early retirement.

    Stocks fell Thursday, after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index closed at a record a day earlier, as Best Buy Co. tumbled and earnings at companies from Citigroup Inc. to CSX Corp. disappointed investors.

    Weak earnings drag U.S. stocks mostly lower

    A batch of negative company news gave investors something to fret over Thursday. A day after eking out its first record high of 2014, the stock market lost ground Thursday as electronics retailer Best Buy, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, and railroad operator CSX had disappointing earnings news.

    This is a copy of the poster used by the merchants during the Geneva’s Gone Mobile campaign, where consumers received text messages on their smartphone that included specials at local stores.

    Geneva’s e-specials via text a hit with local shoppers

    Kukec's eBuzz features Geneva’s Gone Mobile campaign, which provided coupons and other specials sent via text message to consumers during the holidays. It became such a hit that it is now continuing as a regular program. The campaign, led by the Geneva Chamber of Commerce, started Nov 1 and garnered about 1,100 consumers who opted in by texting GENEVA to 223344. They then received image-rich mobile messages, or full-color images, and not just text messages, from about 30 members of the chamber. Each of those 30 members sent at least one text out to the consumer group.

    Mercedes-Benz unveils the new C-Class car during a preview night for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week.

    Hot cars at the Detroit auto show

    The North American International Auto Show began this weekend in Detroit with media and industry previews. It opens to the public Jan. 18. Here are some of the new cars and experimental concept vehicles unveiled at the show:

    AOL Inc. gave up control of Patch, the local news division hampered by years of losses, by entering into a joint venture with investment firm Hale Global.

    AOL gives up control of money-losing Patch as shares rise

    AOL Inc. gave up control of Patch, the local news division hampered by years of losses, by entering into a joint venture with investment firm Hale Global. Hale acquired a majority stake in Patch for an undisclosed amount. The New York-based firm, which focuses on technology investments, will maintain Patch’s more than 900 sites across the U.S., the companies said in a statement yesterday.


    NBC, Facebook enter content deal for Olympics

    NBC and Facebook announced a deal Thursday to share content on the upcoming Winter Olympics, both hoping to boost interest on what promises to be a big event for social media. The network believes social media helps drive more viewers to their telecasts. Facebook wants to establish itself as the place to have those conversations.

    The National Labor Relations Board says Wal-Mart illegally fired, disciplined or threatened more than 60 employees in 14 states including Illinois for participating in legally protected activities to complain about wages and working conditions at the nation’s largest retailer.

    Gov’t charges Wal-Mart with labor violations

    Federal officials filed a formal complaint Wednesday charging that Wal-Mart violated the rights of workers who took part in protests and strikes against the company. The National Labor Relations Board says Wal-Mart illegally fired, disciplined or threatened more than 60 employees in 14 states including Illinois for participating in legally protected activities to complain about wages and working conditions at the nation’s largest retailer.

    House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., right, confers with the committee’s ranking Democrat, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., on Capitol Hill in Washington, before the start of the committee’s hearing on the implementation of the Affordable Care Actís HealthCare.gov website.

    Cybersecurity chief had qualms over health website

    The top cybersecurity officer for the Health and Human Services Department said he was concerned about potential vulnerabilities ahead of the launch of the Obama administration’s health care website. But Kevin Charest told congressional investigators he was unable to get answers to his questions from others inside the department. He concluded that the testing of the site was substandard.

    A portion of The UnitedHealth Group Inc.’s campus in Minnetonka, Minn. Its fourth-quarter earnings jumped 15 percent and topped expectations

    Insurer UnitedHealth’s 4Q profit rises 15 percent

    UnitedHealth Group’s fourth-quarter earnings jumped 15 percent and topped expectations, as the nation’s largest health insurer booked a sizeable gain from a business that doesn’t sell insurance. The Minnetonka, Minn., company’s shares climbed 4 percent in early premarket trading Thursday after it released results.

    Goldman Sachs Group Inc. headquarters in New York. Its fourth-quarter profit dropped 21 percent as revenue from mortgages and trading in bonds and other securities weakened.

    Goldman Sachs says 4Q profit falls 21 percent

    Goldman Sachs says its fourth-quarter profit dropped 21 percent as revenue from mortgages and trading in bonds and other securities weakened. Goldman earned $2.25 billion in the October-December quarter after paying dividends on preferred shares, down from $2.83 billion in the same period a year earlier.

    Chicago’s City Council on Wednesday passed an ordinance prohibiting the use of electronic cigarettes in areas where tobacco products are currently banned.

    Chicago City Council tightens e-cigarette rules

    Chicago’s City Council on Wednesday passed an ordinance prohibiting the use of electronic cigarettes in areas where tobacco products are currently banned. The 45-4 vote by the aldermen bars the use of e-cigarettes in offices, indoor public areas and within a certain distance of building entrances. It also moves the e-cigarettes to behind retail counters and prohibits sales to minors.

    Best Buy said Thursday that a key sales barometer fell during the holiday shopping season, stung partly by weakness in the U.S. and a retail environment heavy on promotions. Its stock dropped more than 28 percent in premarket trading.

    Best Buy holiday sales fall, shares skid

    Best Buy said Thursday that a key sales barometer fell during the holiday shopping season, stung partly by weakness in the U.S. and a retail environment heavy on promotions.Its stock dropped more than 28 percent in premarket trading. Best Buy Co. said comparable store sales dipped 0.8 percent for the nine weeks ended Jan. 4. This was better than the 1.7 percent decline in the prior-year period.

Life & Entertainment

    Supporting actress nominee Jennifer Lawrence demonstrates the power of hair to define a character in David O. Russell’s “American Hustle,” shut out of the hair and makeup category.

    Hair stylists get brushed off in Oscar noms

    Not to split hairs, but the voters at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences got everything right in the Oscar nominations announced Thursday morning. Except for the hair and makeup category. Hair styles are practically characters in “American Hustle.” Yet, the 12 credited hair stylists and wig makers on it were given the brush off in the hair and makeup category.

    Russell Johnson, as the professor, during filming of a two-hour reunion show, “The Return from Gilligan’s Island,” in Los Angeles. Johnson died Thursday at his home in Washington State of natural causes. He was 89.

    Russell Johnson, ‘Gilligan’ professor, dead at 89

    The actor who played “The Professor” on “Gilligan’s Island,” Russell Johnson, has died. His agent, Mike Eisenstadt, says Johnson died Thursday morning at his home in Washington State of natural causes. He was 89.


    Mortgage professor: If borrowers owned the appraisals they pay for, they would be able to shop for a mortgage effectively

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has developed two new disclosure forms that will replace three forms administered by HUD and the Federal Reserve. The adoption date was recently extended to August 2015, which hopefully will allow CFPB to make some needed improvements.

    Amy Adams, from left, Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner, Christian Bale and Jennifer Lawrence star in “American Hustle,” which was nominated for an Academy Award for best picture Thursday. The 86th Academy Awards will be held on March 2.

    'American Hustle,' 'Gravity' tie with 10 Oscar noms

    Sting movie "American Hustle" will fight for top honors with space thriller "Gravity," as both films are tied for 10 Academy Award nominations, followed closely by "12 Years a Slave" with 9. The Oscars will be handed out March 2 in a televised broadcast on ABC.

    The Phantom (Cooper Grodin) employs the music of the night to seduce young Christine (Julia Rose Udine) in “The Phantom of the Opera” running through March 2 at the Cadillac Palace Theatre.

    Re-imagined 'Phantom' as engaging as ever

    Fear not “Phantom of the Opera” fans. The mist still swirls, the skiff still glides along the underground lake and the chandelier still plummets in the newly re-imagined North American touring production of the famed Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, which opened Wednesday at the Cadillac Palace Theatre in Chicago. The highly successful didn't require much tweaking. But that didn't stop über-impresario Cameron Mackintosh, the show's original producer whose North American tour boasts brisk direction from Laurence Connor and new sets from designer Paul Brown, whose treacherous subterranean staircase and grand, mirrored hall are particularly impressive.

    The CW says it’s developing an online spinoff of the “Veronica Mars” series, which originally starred Kristen Bell.

    CW: ‘Veronica Mars’ spinoff planned for online

    The CW says it’s developing an online spinoff of the “Veronica Mars” series. The decision to proceed with the spinoff was made Tuesday and details have yet to be worked out, including the cast and characters, the CW said.

    Trace Adkins’ publicist confirmed to The Associated Press on Wednesday that the singer entered rehab after consuming alcohol during the Country Cruising cruise.

    Country singer Trace Adkins enters alcohol rehab

    Country singer Trace Adkins has entered alcohol rehab. Adkins’ publicist told Country Weekly and confirmed to The Associated Press on Wednesday that the singer entered rehab after consuming alcohol during the Country Cruising cruise.


    Jon Heder's in town screening 'Napoleon Dynamite'

    Cult star Jon Heder drops by the suburbs this weekend to introduce showings of his movie “Napoleon Dynamite,” for which he was reportedly paid a paltry $1,000.

    A renegade Israeli cop (Lior Ashkenazi), right, is pressed into helping a distraught father torture a suspect in the case of his murdered daughter in “Big Bad Wolves.”

    These ‘Wolves’ can’t get much bigger or badder

    Dann Gire reviews the new movie “Big Bad Wolves,” which he describes as “a bleak and brutal Israeli-made child killer thriller that delivers well-crafted torture porn with a faint conscience.”

    A CIA recruiter (Kevin Costner), right, works with a young Jack Ryan (Chris Pine) in “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.”

    ‘Jack Ryan’ reboot falls back on formula

    Having clung to the Russians as go-to villains long after the Cold War thawed, the movies find themselves current again with their favorite arch-enemy. Cooling Russo-American relations have yielded an opening for the return of Tom Clancy’s CIA analyst, just in time for the Sochi Olympics. In the Jack Ryan reboot, “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit,” Chris Pine takes over as the spy who was played by Alec Baldwin (“The Hunt for Red October”), Harrison Ford (“Patriot Games,” “Clear and Present Danger”) and Ben Affleck (“The Sum of All Fears”).

    Atlanta cop James (Ice Cube) right, tests Ben (Kevin Hart) with a taste of his police shift in the cliched action comedy “Ride Along.”

    ‘Ride Along’ fueled by verbal, visual clichés

    Tim Story’s generic cop/buddy action comedy “Ride Along” rides along on Ice Cube’s fixed scowl, Kevin Hart’s broken attention span, plus Phil Hay’s murdered screenplay, knocked off by a fatal volley of verbal and visual clichés. This comic crime movie ruins itself in practically every scene with some of the dumbest, done-to-death devices known to the generic cop-buddy action comedy genre.

    Pruning, along with an arborist using a resistograph to check for tree decay, is used to determine a tree’s stability.

    Wild weather feeds homeowners’ anxiety over trees

    “It is very common for people to be afraid of trees simply because they are large,” says arborist Joe Lamb. The health of the tree is more important than its size, Buell says, and he recommends that property owners focus on managing their trees. That includes annual health checks, pruning, and precautionary steps such as adding support and even lightning protection when necessary.

    Raspberries are an easy-to-grow choice for containers. They can be placed near high traffic areas around the property, making for convenient and wholesome snacks.

    Gardening small? Many fruits grow in containers

    Many fruit growers are going to pots, and small wonder. Containers are great for tight spaces, easy to manage, convenient for harvesting, and provide better soil than is found in most gardens. Everything from blueberries to persimmons, citrus to currents can be grown in containers. And don’t forget that old standby, the clay strawberry pot.

    Mount Prospect native Ian Brennan, co-creator of the hit TV show “Glee,” has a film premiering this weekend at the Sundance Film Festival.

    Mt. Prospect native, 'Glee' co-creator has new film

    Mount Prospect native Ian Brennan has enjoyed big success with “Glee,” the popular television show he co-created. Now, he's taking his work to a bigger screen. “Cooties,” a movie he cowrote and stars in, will have its premiere this weekend at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. “I'm so excited,” Brennan, 35, said Wednesday.


    Night life: RA’s dragon bite cocktail sweet with a kick
    RA Sushi’s dragon bite embraces its sweetness; Sal’s offers karaoke nights Thursdays and Saturdays; Barbakoa pairs tequila with dinner.

    Bob Mould plays the Prairie Center for the Arts in Schaumburg on Friday.

    Music notes: Bob Mould plays Schaumburg's Prairie Center

    Bob Mould, the acclaimed singer-songwriter-musician who formerly led the alternative/punk rock groups Husker Du and Sugar, will perform this weekend in Schaumburg. Another key band in the indie world, Superchunk, will play in Chicago.

    Andie (voiced by Katherine Heigl) and her park pals face food stockpiling issues in “The Nut Job.”

    Forgettable ‘Nut Job’ may crack up kids

    The animals of animated Liberty Park are facing a nut shortage as winter approaches. Then, a selfish squirrel on the outs with the other critters stumbles upon an unlikely utopia: a nut shop. Antics ensue in "The Nut Job," filled with nutty puns but not enough nuttiness to appease the audience (at least the adults).

    Workers apply mud to the San Francisco de Asis Church in Ranchos de Taos, N.M., as part of an annual ritual that has been done for nearly 200 years. The historic church was made famous by the paintings of Georgia O’Keeffe and the photographs of Ansel Adams and Paul Strand.

    Off the slopes, 5 free things to do in Taos, N.M.

    To winter sports enthusiasts, Taos is best known for its challenging ski slopes. But this northern New Mexico town has plenty more to offer visitors year-round, on and off the slopes. A hipper little sister of sorts to Santa Fe, Taos is known for its diverse outdoor offerings as well as its funky town square packed full of history, art galleries, and Hispanic and Native American culture.



    Editorial: Fix whistleblower law to boost safety

    A suburban man stayed in a state job inspecting amusement rides even after evidence emerged that he falsified reports. Changes at the Illinois Department of Labor and Illinois Executive Inspector General's office could fix that, a Daily Herald editorial says.


    Think critically, think depth when reading about polls

    Columnist Jim Slusher: If it’s election season — and it is, with the March 18 primary barely more than 60 days away — it must be time for a public-opinion poll, and with it, this warning: reader beware.


    Whatever else happens, the issue still is jobs

    Columnist Byron York: There was a lot to talk about when House Speaker John Boehner appeared before reporters recently for the first time since the holiday break. There are continuing fights over Obamacare. Immigration reform. Appropriations bills. The debt ceiling. The Democratic push for the president’s “inequality agenda.”


    Lawmakers at Capitol shouldn’t sit by party
    A Palatine letter to the editor: Last spring, my spouse and I drove to Springfield to visit the fairly new (and fabulous) Abraham Lincoln Museum. While in town, we toured the state Capitol and both its legislative chambers, where my (lovely but perturbed) wife whispered a question to me: “Why do the parties sit on opposite sides of the aisle?”


    Extension of benefits a losing proposal
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: When the president goes on TV and pleads for the extension of unemployment benefits, it’s pretty hard to oppose him without being labeled as heartless and not caring, but when is enough enough?


    Democrats’ blame for rollout really a stretch
    An Elk Grove Village letter to the editor: I have seen many a Democratic talking heads on TV as of late, and I just want to be sure I understand what it is they are saying regarding the rollout of Obamacare.


    Ryan wants to cut aid that helped family?
    A Naperville letter to the editor: I wonder if Paul Ryan is advocating for the elimination of Social Security Survivors Benefits as he looks to further reduce federal assistance to the needy. You know ... the program that helped to support his own family after his father died.


    Rauner simply doesn’t get it
    A Carpentersville letter to the editor: I’ve been watching and paying attention to the political ads of Republican candidate for governor, Bruce Rauner. This guy is so out of touch with reality that it’s actually comical to watch and listen to what this billionaire (venture capitalist) has to say.


    Has Obama fired anyone for snafus?
    A Wood Dale letter to the editor: Before the Democrats and others hang Governor Christie, remember that there is a person in Washington who claims not to have known about NSA spying, Benghazi, that the health are website was not ready or that you could lose your insurance and doctors.


    Nobel laureate deserved better play
    A Wood Dale letter to the editor: After reading through the first section of the Jan. 10 paper, I was struck by something odd on Page 11. I saw, and read the article/obit. about the Nobel laureate. I also noticed on the same page an article about a child molester just beneath it.


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