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Local News

Sheriff's Office Investigating Stolen Veteran Flag Holders in Waynesville

The DeWitt County Sheriff's Office is seeking information in the theft of about 25 veteran flag holders from last weekend.
 
Sheriff Jered Shofner explains the holders were stolen shortly before the Memorial Day ceremony that was held at the Waynesville cemetery. He says they are seeking any information about the thefts.
 
 
Sheriff Shofner says it's a despicable crime and wants to hold the person responsible accountable.
 
 
If you have any information on this crime, contact Clinton Crimestoppers at 217-935-3333. 
 
Sheriff Shofner reminds the public Crimestoppers phone line is anonymous and does not utilize caller identification. Crimestoppers wants your information, not your name.

Threatening Weather Possible This Weekend

Being a holiday weekend, central Illinois residents are likely to be out and enjoying what should be very nice weather.
 
However, there is the chance of some pop-up threatening weather and National Weather Service Meteorologist Chris Miller reminds anyone planning to be outside, be aware of what the weather might bring for the day.
 
 
With a predominantly wet and cool spring to this point, time outside has not been prominent. Miller explains if a storm is to pop up this weekend, get inside. He says just because you might be on a porch with an overhang or in a garage, that does not keep you from getting struck by lighting.
 
 
Miller says if you are out somewhere without shelter, he says the best place to get for safety is your vehicle and to wait to get out and resume what you are doing until after the storm passes.
 
 
Miller says a lightning bolt that is within five miles could be a threat especially if a particular system is moving quickly. He notes it is even more dangerous if you're out in an open area. 
 
He reminds those planning to be outside, lightning tends to strike the tallest object around. 

DNR Promoting Safety on Waters This Weekend

Memorial Day weekend is the traditional kick off to the summer boating season for many and local authorities are promoting safety on the water.
 
Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police Officer John Williamson indicates they are focusing on life jackets again this summer. He says there should be a life jacket for each person on board and all passengers under the age of 12 are required to wear one.
 
 
If this weekend is going to be the first time you'll have the boat out on the water, Williamson notes a quick check of the boat's engine and life jackets that are on board is a good idea. He says rotted life jackets or ones with holes are not safe.
 
 
Authorities recommend if you're going to drink on the lake, bring a designated driver. Williamson notes alcohol consumption and operating a boat do not mix. He says there are just too many scenarios where having an impaired operator puts everyone on board at risk. 
 
 
DNR officials say they anticipate a big crowd on Clinton Lake, especially with warmer weather expected for the holiday weekend. 
 
Williamson encourages everyone to slow down, especially around other boaters, and get to your destination and home from your destination safely. 

Click It Or Ticket This Weekend

The Memorial Day Weekend gets underway today and Illinois Transportation officials, the State Police and local police agencies are teaming up to enforce the state's seat belt law. Former State Representative turned IDOT Assistant Secretary Rich Brauer was sold on the effectiveness of seat belts in his younger days. He credits being buckled up with likely saving his life in an early 1970s car crash in Menard County....
 
 
Through Memorial Day, motorists can expect to see increased patrols and enforcement zones statewide as part of IDOT’s “Click It or Ticket” mobilization. 

ISP Investigating Fatal Car vs. Train Accident

Officials with the Illinois State Police are currently investigating a car versus train crash that occurred approximately three miles west of Macomb off of U.S. Highway 136 at approximately 11:03 a.m Thursday.  The preliminary investigation indicates that a car was on a private drive crossing railroad tracks when the car was struck by an Amtrak Train.  The driver, and lone occupant of the car, is confirmed deceased.  The Amtrak train had 20 passengers and four employees on board.  One passenger on the train was transported to an area hospital with an injury that is not life-threatening.  There is no additional information available at this time.  


Medical Cannabis as a Pain Reliever

Medical marijuana has been highly debated within and outside of the medical community for several decades.
 
The side effects of cannibis are not as intense as side effects of other medications being prescribed to patients according to Bret Bender of the Maribis of Springfield dispensary. Effects that cannabis tends to have on people are mild and include hunger, dry mouth, distractedness, and increased blood flow and additional release of dopamine and endorphins causing "giggliness." 
 
 
Cannabis has been repeatedly referred to as a "gateway drug," but that doesn't seem to be the case. Bender adds that most people on cannabis tend to stay on it and the real danger is from other habit forming drugs such as opiates.
 
 
While there are some doctors that are firmly against prescribing medical cannabis, Bender says that doctors in the area are starting to be more open to the practice.

Officials: Starved Rock visitors should be patient, cautious

Illinois officials say Memorial Day visitors to Starved Rock State Park should monitor social media for reports on traffic delays and parking closures.
 
Department of Natural Resources officials say large crowds are expected at the recreation area near Utica in LaSalle County.
 
Illinois River flooding closed some parking this spring. But officials say all lots should be open for Memorial Day weekend.
 
Rafael Gutierrez is chief of the state agency's office of law enforcement. He says motorists should be patient and follow directions from conservation police and park staff around Starved Rock this weekend.
 
Police will enforce Starved Rock rules. They include no alcohol anywhere in the park until June 1; no off-trail hiking or trail-walking after dark; no rock- or cliff-climbing; no swimming; no defacing sandstone walls or littering.

Local Weather
 
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