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Local News

  • Parent Category: News

Pizza Hut restaurants closing in Watseka, Hoopeston, Paxton

Area communities are losing another eatery at year’s end. Pizza Hut franchises are closing in east-central Illinois.

Pizza Huts in Watseka, Hoopeston, Paxton and Monticello are closing their doors on Saturday, December 31st. Franchise owner Mike Stegman says economic reasons are forcing him to close the stores he’s owned for more than 30 years.

Stegman closed his Gibson City Pizza Hut last month.

Stegman said the company is pushing for major remodel jobs at Pizza Hut outlets, a cost—he says—that’s not feasible.

Stegman is based in Wichita, KANSAS. He started his franchise chain in 1986, locating Pizza Huts in Hoopeston and Gibson City. The Watseka location was opened in 1988. Stegman started the Paxton site in 1989, and added his Monticello store in 1991.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Illinois State Police investigate death of Bradley woman on I-57

A Bradley woman may have been a hit-and-run victim on I-57 over the holiday weekend. The body of 30-year-old Jamie DeLeon was discovered in the median. Troopers reported the woman may have been struck by an unknown vehicle.

The north and southbound lanes of the interstate were shut down for about four hours due to the incident. Several emergency responders were at the scene just after 8 am Saturday.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Buckley bar brawl leaves one dead

A Sunday evening bar brawl in Buckley resulted in one death and several injuries. 25-year-old Daniel Connolly of Lyons (IL) was pronounced dead at Gibson Area Hospital in Gibson City. Others were treated for injuries.

No arrests had been made as of Monday.

Buckley Police, Iroquois County Sheriff’s Police, and Illinois State Police all responded to a fight in progress at the Dutchmaster Bar on Route 45.

In a prepared news release, sheriff’s police reported multiple victims were found injured at the scene. Buckley Ambulance personnel and Iroquois Memorial Hospital EMS transported the injured to area hospitals.

Daniel Connolly was pronounced dead upon arrival at Gibson Area Hospital.

The incident remains under investigation by the sheriff’s department and Buckley Police Department.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Milford teen enters ‘not guilty’ plea for murder of restaurant owner

19-year-old Randy White of Milford was in Iroquois County Court last week (Thursday) where he was formally charged for the fatal shooting of a Milford restaurant owner.

White remains jailed in Watseka on a one-million dollar bond. He pleaded not guilty to three counts of first-degree murder.

White appeared in court for arraignment with his public defender, Dale Strough of Watseka.

Judge James Kinzer set a pre-trial hearing for 9:30 am January 26.

White, who faces 45 to 85 years in prison if convicted, remained on a $1 million bond at the county jail in Watseka.

White was arrested for the November 13 murder of Jesus “Jesse” Cintora. The 35-year-old died from a gunshot wound when responding to a burglary in progress at his business, the Milford Family Restaurant.

Cintora’s body was discovered about a block away from the restaurant. He had suffered a gunshot wound.

Police said items from the burglary at the restaurant and from the scene of the murder were found at a Milford residence where White was staying.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Passerby saves woman from burning house

Tammy Blackwell may owe her life to a stranger from Kentucky. The Newton County woman was asleep in her home (Thursday) when a passerby woke her up to notify her the house was on fire.

That stranger was gone when firemen arrived at the scene.
Firefighters from Morocco were helped by Lake and Lincoln Township and Lowell in answering the call to McClellan Township in Newton County.

The location was along U-S. 41 between Morocco and Lake Village.

Morocco Fire Chief Corrie Myers said there were several calls to 911 from drivers about a structure fire at 600 North, which intersects with U.S. 41.

The garage of the home belonging to Bill and Tammy Blackwell was engulfed when firemen arrived.

The stranger who wokeTammy up was from Kentucky. He was gone by the time fire crews arrived.

Chief Myers said 20 firemen were at the scene from 8:30 am ‘til 2:30 pm. The garage and breezeway were a total loss. The cause was found to be electrical.

The State Fire Marshall is investigating.

94.1 WGFA