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BC-IL--Illinois News Digest 1:30 pm, IL

January 16, 2019

Here’s a look at how AP’s general news coverage is shaping up today in Illinois. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the AP-Chicago bureau at 312-781-0500 or chifax@ap.org. Caryn Rousseau is on the desk, followed by Herb McCann.

A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Central.



CHICAGO _ More than three years after the video of the Chicago police shooting of black teen Laquan McDonald was made public, this week one judge will announce how long the officer who pulled the trigger 16 times will be imprisoned and another will say if she believes three other officers lied about what happened to protect him. The hearings are Thursday and Friday. By Don Babwin. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos.


An Illinois judge acquitted a man of murder Wednesday, more than two decades after jurors convicted him by relying on ballistics that proved to be wrong. Supporters of Patrick Pursley, 53, clapped in a Winnebago County courtroom when Judge Joseph McGraw issued his ruling, saying prosecutors had scant evidence to prove Pursley’s guilt. By Ivan Moreno. SENT: 300 words. Will be updated. Photos planned.


JERSEYVILLE, Ill. _ An Illinois father and stepmother will spend decades in prison in the starvation death of their 6-year-old son, who authorities say weighed just 17 pounds when he died. The Alton Telegraph reports a judge on Wednesday sentenced Michael L. Roberts to 25 years in prison and Georgena L. Roberts to 20 years. The 43-year-olds from Jerseyville both pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in November. Authorities have said the couple starved the boy as a form of punishment on a regular basis. SENT: 130 words, photos. UPCOMING: 250 words, photos.


EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. _ Loretta’s tail didn’t stop wagging from the time she walked into Trinity Lutheran School in Edwardsville until the time she left two hours later. Children, teachers and other staff treated the yellow Labrador retriever like a movie star. Loretta’s visit filled the school with excitement and prompted a lot of laughter on Monday, but students also learned a hard truth: She has cancer and has been given weeks to live. By Teri Maddox. Belleville News Democrat. SENT: 870 words, photos pursuing.



NEW YORK _ Sears will live on_ at least for now. The company’s chairman and largest shareholder won a bankruptcy auction for Sears in New York, averting liquidation of the iconic chain, according to a source familiar with the negotiations. The move, which still needs the approval of a bankruptcy judge, would allow Eddie Lampert to keep open roughly 400 stores and preserve tens of thousands of jobs that come with them. By Anne D’Innocenzio. SENT: 800 words, photo.


Small companies across the country are losing business because of the government shutdown. Federal contractors, especially those who rely on the government for most of their revenue, aren’t getting orders and aren’t getting paid. Any company that needs help from agencies including the Small Business Administration can’t get it. And businesses located near federal offices or operations, aren’t getting sales from government workers or visitors who are their customers. By Joyce M. Rosenberg. SENT: 900 words, photos.


—UNITED AIRLINES-OUTLOOK: United Airlines executives say business travelers are booking flights at a faster clip than a year ago. SENT: 130 words.


—CHILD PORNOGRAPHY-SENTENCING: Federal prosecutors in Illinois say a Texas man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison on child pornography charges involving more than 40 girls in eight states.

—CHICAGO-SEMINARY CLOSURE: The Archdiocese of Chicago says it’s closing its undergraduate seminary at Loyola University Chicago due to changing priesthood demographics.

—TROOPER DEATH-FUNERAL: Funeral services are set for an Illinois State Police trooper killed when he was struck and killed by a vehicle along Interstate 294 in suburban Chicago during a snowstorm.

—DATING APP-ROBBERY: A 19-year-old suburban Chicago man faces charges accusing him of robbing someone he lured through a dating app.

—SHOOTING RULES-COUNTY: The Lake County commissioners in northwestern Indiana have defeated a new ordinance that would have enlarged areas where guns cannot be fired.

—HOBART FIRE-FIREFIGHTERS INJURED: Authorities say three firefighters were injured in northwestern Indiana as crews battled a fire that gutted a 122-year-old building.



CHAMPAIGN, Ill. _ Illinois hosts Minnesota in Big Ten conference play Wednesday. UPCOMING: 600 words. Game starts at 8 p.m. CT.


CHICAGO _ Butler travels to Chicago to take on DePaul on Wednesday. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merits. Game starts at 7:30 p.m. CT.


PEORIA, Ill. _ Bradley hosts Drake in college basketball action Wednesday. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merits. Game starts at 7 p.m. CT.


CHICAGO _ Former U.S. forward Josh Wolff has been hired as assistant coach under new American national team head coach Gregg Berhalter, moving with his former boss at Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew. Wolff, who turns 42 next month, was a teammate of Berhalter on the U.S. World Cup teams in 2002 and 2006, and with Germany’s 1860 Munich. SENT: 190 words.


If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to chifax@ap.org. If you have photos of regional or statewide interest, please send them to the AP state photo center in New York, 888-273-6867. For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477.

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