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The FBI is reaching out to the public to help ID the suspect in ten bank robberies that span five states.

The so-called "I-55 Bandit" has robbed or attempted to rob banks in Illinois, Missouri, Maryland, West Virginia, and Tennessee.

The suspect is described as a white male in his early to mid 20s with a thin build. He has short brown or strawberry blonde hair and stands about 6′-6’3″ tall. All of the banks he targeted in the metro area were along Interstate 55. The FBI is accepting tips by phone atl 1-800-225-5324 or visit FBI.gov

 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 13:58
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A Missouri Vietnam War veteran has finally received recognition for his bravery.

With the help of Senator Clair McCaskill, Walter Sitzwohl was awarded the Purple Heart he earned after being wounded while on patrol in 1969. Sitzwohl's wife Tomme contacted Senator McCaskill in July and the Senator's office opened a case on behalf of the army veteran. McCaskill is a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. The 65 year old Sitzwohl served nearly two years in Vietnam.

After reviewing its records, the Army determined Sitzwohl should have been awarded the Purple Heart Medal for injuries sustained in combat.

 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 11:46
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U.S. News and World Reports has published its annual ranking of the best colleges and universities in the country. Princeton is number one among universities and Williams ranks tops among colleges. The publication followed a new formula this year that put more emphasis on student graduation rates, a school's reputation among its peers, and faculty resources. Locally, Washington University was selected to the number-14 spot, the University of Illinois at number-41, Missouri at 97 and just out of the top-100 is Saint Louis University ranked at 101.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 11:08
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The Effingham County state's attorney's office is releasing no information regarding the body discovered last night near where a seven year old girl went missing from her home in Watson, Illinois on Sunday. Authorities and volunteers had been searching for Willow Long when remains were found around 7:30 PM on Monday. There has been no identification of the body and an autopsy is expected to be performed today. According to Fox-2 news, crime scene tape surrounds the little girl's home and the Illinois State Police have assumed control of the investigation. Willow's mother says she was napping when the girl walked out of the house and disappeared.

 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 10:05
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St. Louis-based Furniture Brands International has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The company makes the Thomasville, Broyhill, Lane and Drexel Heritage brands.  Officials say the bulk of the company will be sold to investment firm Oaktree Capital Management.  Furniture Brands shares fell almost 47 percent to close at 30 cents.

 
Tuesday, 10 September 2013 09:19
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Murder charges will be filed against the uncle of 7-year-old Willow Long.

Prosecutors say Justin DeRyke is guilty of first-degree murder.

The arrest comes less than a day after the body of a young child was found near Willow's home in Watson, Illinois. A forensic pathologist positively identified the remain as Willow on Tuesday. The investigation also revealed that she had been murdered.

Effingham County authorities started search efforts after the girl's mother reported her missing on Sunday morning. 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 11:59
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Homeless advocate Reverend Larry Rice is back, this time hoping to reestablish Integrity Village at same site that was condemned by the city last year. The city shut down the homeless camp at Vandeventer and I-44 in May of last year, citing public health concerns and no occupancy permits as reasons for condemnation. Rice and three others were arrested that night after refusing to vacate the property. A prayer tent is expected to be pitched Tuesday after a recent court ruling said Rice can once again practice religion on the property. 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 09:13
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   A group home for people with eating disorders is getting the go ahead in Town and Country.  

   The Board of Aldermen Monday night unanimously approved a conditional use permit for a McCallum Place residential treatment center in a single-family home the 13,400 block of Conway Road.  

   The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the city had little say over the plan because it met with conditions set by state law.  

   The home, which sits alone on 18 acres near Maryville University, would serve up to eight people.  The paper reports that other than some striped parking spaces, there would be no changes to the site.

   McCallum Place operates other eating disorder treatment facilities in Webster Groves and Kirkwood.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 03:35
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   Two metro-east teachers are among the finalists for Illinois Teacher of the Year.

   Sina Rowe is a kindergarten to third grade special education teacher at Goshen Elementary School in Edwardsville.  Donna Whitaker teaches seventh grade Science at West Junior High School in Belleville.  

   They're among 11 finalists named Monday by state education officials.  The winner will be announced at an October banquet in Normal.

   Other finalists: John Bierbaum at Normal Community West High School in Normal, Mark Buesing at Libertyville High School in Libertyville, Amanda Dearmond at DuQuoin Middle School in DuQuoin, William Fritz at Adlai Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, DeLores Mannes at Parker Junior High School in Flossmoor, Kerry (Fran) Meyers at Brimfield Grade School in Brimfield, Pam Reilly at Woodbury Elementary School in Sandwich, Aaron Sitze at Oregon High School in Oregon and Amy Walsh at Tioga School in Bensenville.

 
Tuesday, 10 September 2013 03:15
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   CHICAGO (AP) - Riverboat casinos in Illinois want to remain open for business around the clock.

   The Illinois Casino Gaming Association is asking state regulators for the okay to operate 24 hours a day. Currently, no casinos are open more than 22 hours.

   The Illinois Gaming Board has scheduled a public hearing for Sept. 19 in Chicago to consider the request.

   Tom Swoik is executive director of the casino gaming association, which represents most of the state's casinos. He says video gaming already is available around the clock at places such as truck stops.

   Swoik says 24-hour operations would raise revenue for the casinos and the state and create jobs.

   Opponents say extending casino hours create more problems for compulsive gamblers, who would never have to leave the casino.

 
Tuesday, 10 September 2013 02:10
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