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BC-IL--Illinois News Coverage Advisory, IL

February 21, 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 Herbert 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A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change.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 _ Chicago police say “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett has turned himself in to face a charge of making a false police report when he said he was attacked in downtown Chicago by two men who hurled racist and anti-gay slurs and looped a rope around his neck. Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says Smollett turned himself in early Thursday and was arrested. The charge could bring up to three years in prison for the actor, who’s black and gay. By Don Babwin. SENT: 1,100 words, photos, video. Will be updated. Developing form 9 a.m. CT police news conference.


—EMPIRE CAST MEMBER-ATTACK-THE LATEST: The Latest on the attack reported by Jussie Smollett. Will be updated as developments occur.

—EMPIRE CAST MEMBER-ATTACK-BROTHERS, from CHICAGO: An attorney representing the brothers at the center of an investigation into the attack reported by Jussie Smollett says her clients “manned up” and testified in front of a grand jury, before prosecutors charged the “Empire” actor with filing a false police report. SENT: 1,010 words, photos, video.

—EMPIRE CAST MEMBER-ATTACK-TIMELINE: Key moments since Jussie Smollett reported Chicago attack. SENT: 960 words, photos, video.


CHICAGO _ R. Kelly’s lawyer says the R&B singer is moving out of his Chicago recording studio because a judge barred him from working there overnight as a result of building-code violations. Steve Greenberg said in a statement Wednesday that the judge effectively ordered the Grammy Award-winning artist “not to be creative between 9:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m.” He compared Kelly to Ludwig van Beethoven and John Lennon, who the attorney said did some of their best music work overnight, too. By Michael Tarm. SENT: 290 words, photo.


Kentucky’s public employee pension system, $39 billion in the red, is among the worst-funded retirement plans in the country and has vexed lawmakers for years as they sought a solution. Now some lawmakers think they’ve found at least a partial fix: sports gambling. Several bills introduced this year would legalize it in the state, a step made possible by a U.S. Supreme Court decision last May that ended Nevada’s monopoly. Kentucky is one of at least 22 states where lawmakers this year are considering legislation to legalize sports gambling. Seven states joined Nevada in legalizing it last year after the Supreme Court’s decision. By Geoff Mulvihill. 900 words. Photos. Graphic. With AP data distribution giving details of every sports betting bill introduced so far in the states.


—MISSING CHINESE SCHOLAR: Defense attorneys for a man accused of kidnapping and killing a University of Illinois scholar from China say they could be ready for a trial to begin July 1.

—WAREHOUSE SHOOTING-AURORA-FUNERAL: A small funeral home was packed with hundreds of mourners for a 21-year-old college student who was killed on the first day of his internship when a worker opened fire inside an Illinois manufacturing facility. Photos.

—DUPAGE COUNTY-CANCER RISK: A federal judge has refused to order the resumption of operations at a suburban Chicago plant that sterilizes medical instruments with a cancer-causing chemical.

—XGR-ELECTED OFFICIALS-BODY CAMERAS: A Republican in the Illinois General Assembly says all elected officials in the state should be required to wear body cameras while conducting government business.

—BISHOP-FRAUD CONVICTION: An alleged self-appointed bishop of a Pennsylvania-based ministry has been found guilty by a federal jury in Chicago of collecting church members’ wages and bogus travel-agent fees.

—QUINCY-FIRE DEATHS: A western Illinois man has made his first court appearance in connection with an October house fire that killed two children.

—METRA-LOCOMOTIVES: Metra has approved a nearly $71 million contract to buy 15 locomotives and begin replacing the commuter rail agency’s aging fleet.

—CANCER AWARENESS-HEAD SHAVING: Rockford University’s Jane Addams Center for Civic Engagement is having a unique fundraiser for St. Baldrick’s Foundation.



It’s finally here _ the first of two meetings between Michigan State and Michigan, the in-state rivals that have looked like the class of the Big Ten for much of this season. While Purdue has joined the Spartans and Wolverines in the title race, the two Michigan State-Michigan games could obviously have a big impact on who finishes first. The Wolverines host the Spartans on Sunday. By Noah Trister. SENT: 510 words, photo.


OREM, Utah _ Chicago State plays Utah Valley in a road game Thursday. UPCOMING: 150 words. Game starts at 8 p.m. CT.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. _ Eastern Illinois takes on Belmont in a Thursday road game. UPCOMING: 150 words. Game starts at 7 p.m. CT.


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.