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Michael Jackson's Mother "Found"

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Just about everyone in the country knew Michael Jackson's mother was reportedly "missing." Everyone except Michael Jackson's mother Katherine Jackson who, according to court papers, was kept from communicating with outsiders for a doctor ordered rest at an Arizona retreat.  The AP is reporting that Katherine Jackson's testimony revealed the she only found out that she was reported as missing when she overheard a report on TV that had no picture. The Superior Court Judge didn't believe the Jackson Matriarch did anything wrong, but suspended guardianship because she had not been out of contact with her grandchildren. Guardian rights were eventually given back to Mrs. Jackson.

Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31118-michael-jacksons-mother-qfoundq.html

 

AM Wreck Messes Up I-65 'til PM

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The ramp from northbound I-65 to the westbound Borman was partially closed nearly seven hours today after an accident involving a semi loaded with 42-thousand pounds of beer during the rush hour this morning.  Indiana State Police say it appears the semi going too fast to negotiate a curve on the ramp... and the load shifting from not being properly secured inside the trailer caused the vehicle to roll over onto its passenger side.  Troopers say the driver was taken to Methodist Hospital Gary with non-life threatening injuries.
Crews had to off-load the beer before the semi and trailer could be uprighted.  Traffic was getting through using the left lane of the ramp but that backed up northbound I-65 to just north of US-30.  Traffic returned back to normal at around 3:30 p.m. 

NB I-65 backup 3-15 pm fri   61st AveNB I-65 backup from 73rd Ave.  8-3-12
                ( I-65 traffic cams,  coutersy of INDOT)

Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31115-am-wreck-messes-up-i-65-til-pm.html

 

Griffith Mosquito Positive for West Nile

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Town officials say a mosquito from the southeast side of Griffith has tested positive for the West Nile Virus, according to routine testing conducted by the Lake County Health Department. A news release from the town says immediate steps were taken to eradicate the species of mosquito and the situation will continue to be monitored. They noted the information was being disseminated simply as a warning, noting they have no known cases of the virus in humans or animals.

For information on protecting yourself against mosquito bites, visit the town of Griffith's website:  www.griffith.in.gov 

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31077-griffith-mosquito-positive-for-west-nile.html

 

Groundbreaking for Merrillville Project

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Officials are breaking ground this morning [10am]  for the Taft Street Drainage improvement project in Merrillville, with a ceremony at the proposed south detention pond site just south of 73rd and east of Taft Street. Merrillville Stormwater Utility Executive Director Matt Lake says this is a major project that will include the creation of two detention ponds -- one just east of south 73rd and Taft and the other just east of 69th Avenue and Taft Street.  Lake says the project will alleviate flooding on Taft Street and areas of the Independence Hill subdivision. The pond areas will include native plants and naturalized wetland habitats.  Construction is scheduled to begin this Monday.  Residents of the affected ares and the public are welcome to attend the groundbreaking ceremonies.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31048-groundbreaking-for-merrillville-project.html

 

Fatal Accident in Jasper County

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Indiana State Police say a Miami, Florida, man was pronounced dead at the scene after the semi he was driving for unknown reasons went off the roadway, into a ditch and struck a tree along I-65 just south of the State Road 114 Rensselaer exit around 9:30 Thursday morning. The trailer was loaded with plastic film and can fruit and did not lose any of the load. Troopers say his pet dog was released to Jasper County Animal Control.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31045-fatal-accident-in-jasper-county.html

 

Nearly 2,000 Attend Illiana Mtgs

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Nearly two-thousand people total came out to the two meetings this week on the proposed Illiana Expressway, just over a-thousand in Peotone, and about 750 at Lowell Middle School last night. INDOT spokesman Jim Pinkerton says turnout was definitely higher in Lake County this time compared to the Indiana meeting a few months back. That hearing in Crown Point in February had 400-500 people. Pinkerton says the public has until August 29th to comment on the environmental study and proposed routes, and the information can be viewed and comments can be submitted online to be included in the public record at www.illianacorridor.org . Pinkerton says the next step will involve looking at all the comments, reviewing the study, and later moving into the Tier Two study next year, where the areas for proposed routes are narrowed even further.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31044-nearly-2000-attend-illiana-mtgs.html

 

Charges Filed in Gary Fire Deaths

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Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson, alongside Gary Police Chief Wade Ingram and members of the Gary Police and Fire Departments Thursday, announced charges had been filed against two Lake Station men, accused of murder, murder in the perpetration of arson and arson in the blaze that killed 33-year-old Bernice King and her 14-year-old daughter Angel Harris at Lakeshore Dunes apartments last week. Police allege the deadly fire that also left dozens homeless was set after a disagreement over a deal involving an X-Box and marijuana.   Freeman-Wilson attended funeral services for the victims earlier in the day.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31042-charges-filed-in-gary-fire-deaths.html

 

Indiana Opens Influenza Call Center

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The Indiana State Department of Health says a call center is opening this afternoon from 1-4 Eastern time to answer questions regarding influenza – with five cases of variant influenza A having been identified in Indiana since mid-July, four of them linked to the LaPorte County Fair, and all cases having had contact with swine . Beginning next week, the call center will be open from 8:15 a.m.-4:45 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. Laboratory testing is pending on potential additional cases.

The call center telephone number is (877) 826-0011.

Additional information from the Indiana State Department of Health:

To avoid influenza and other respiratory infections, Hoosiers are reminded to follow these simple practices:

·         Wash your hands frequently, including before and after touching animals.

·         Never eat, drink, or put anything in your mouth when visiting animal areas.  

·         Older adults, pregnant women, young children, and people with weakened immune systems should be extra careful around animals.  

·         Cough or sneeze into your sleeve or elbow.  

·         If possible, avoid contact with those who are ill.  

·         Stay home if you develop influenza symptoms and contact your health care provider.  

Additional information regarding influenza can be found at the Indiana State Department of Health website at www.in.gov/isdh/25462.htm

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/31041-indiana-opens-influenza-call-center.html

 

Preserving Mt. Baldy

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The protection plan put into place last spring to slow and reverse the affects of years of foot traffic on Mount Baldy seems to be working. The Dunes Resource Management department says prevailing winds and weather naturally move and shift the sands of Mount Baldy, but trampling feet speeds up the affect at an "alarming rate." The department credits a public education campaign in combination with a fenced zone at the base of the dune that has shown "substantial recovery." They said visitors should expect to see the protection plan continue and expanded to other dune areas in the park suffering from heavy visitor use.  According to the Indiana Dunes National Lake Shore web site, trampling of feet is nothing new to Mt. Baldy as then National Parks Director, Stephen Mather, who was instrumental in holding hearings in Chicago on a "Sand Dunes National Park," is seen below traversing the dune in 1916.

Mt. Baldy circa 1916
















 (Courtesy of the Indiana Dunes Nat'l Lakeshore)



Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30987-preserving-mt-baldy.html

 

Megabus Crash On I-55 in So. Ill

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Authorities say at least 16-passengers were injured when a Double Decker Megabus the were riding in on Interstate 55 near Litchfield, Illinois, about 55 miles northeast of St. Louis blew a tire causing the bus to slam into a bridge support Thursday afternoon. Published reports say 20 ambulances and six medical helicopters were on scene transporting the injured to two area hospitals. A spokesperson for Megabus says the bus which departed from Chicago to Kansas City with stops in St, Louis and Columbia, Missouri, was carrying 81 passengers. The wreck has closed down both directions of I-55 in near Litchfield.

courtesy of KTVI





          ( from KTVI )

Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30974-megabus-crash-on-i-55-in-so-ill.html

 

Drought Eases in Parts of NW Ind

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drought080212

The area of exceptional drought in Indiana has expanded according to the latest US Drought Monitor released this morning. The map now shows nearly a quarter of the state, starting from the southwest corner, at the most severe level. Much of northwest Indiana remains in moderate drought, but the majority of Newton and Jasper Counties actually improved, moving from severe into the moderate classification.


Here's last week's map:

droughtmap 072612

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30942-drought-eases-in-parts-of-nw-ind.html

   

"Transit 29" Wins $2 Million

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Transit29
Photo: Mike Jones, Al Jones (no relation) and Dave Wilcoxson show off their winnings at Hoosier Lottery Headquarters. (Photo courtesy Hoosier Lottery)

Twenty-nine co-workers at Trailer Transit Inc. in the town of Porter have divvied up a two-million dollar prize from Saturday night's Powerball drawing. Their ticket, purchased at Pat's Liquors on Highway 20 in Porter, matched the first five numbers but not the Powerball, but it had the Power Play option, doubling the one-million dollar prize. Mike Jones was accompanied by company Vice President Dave Wilcoxson of Schererville and part-time maintenance worker Al Jones of Chesterton -- Jones bought the ticket-- to claim the prize on behalf of the group Wednesday.  Hoosier Lottery officials say each winner received $68,695 before taxes.  The "Transit 29" has played Powerball together as a group for about five years, and they're all either from Lake, Porter or LaPorte County.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30924-qtransit-29q-wins-2-million.html

   

Five Indiana Flu Cases Identified

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The Indiana State Department of Health has identified a case of Variant Influenza A in downstate Jackson County, bringing the total to five cases statewide, adding to the four cases linked to the LaPorte County Fair. All cases have been linked to swine. Laboratory testing is pending on potential additional cases.  The State Health Department has detected increased influenza activity in different areas of the state, with symptoms generally lasting about 2 to 5 days.  State health officials say Variant Influenza A virus can be directly transmitted from swine to people and from people to swine and is most likely to occur, when people are in close proximity to live infected pigs, like at county fairs.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30921-five-indiana-flu-cases-identified.html

   

Church Officials: Charges Not Expected

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Charges are not anticipated with regard to the circumstances that led to the dismissal of First Baptist Church of Hammond pastor Jack Schaap, according to church officials who held a news conference in Hammond Wednesday. Lake County Sheriff John Buncich says an investigation involving alleged misconduct with a juvenile is ongoing, in conjunction with agents of the FBI Merrillville office. Sheriff Buncich says officials with First Baptist Church of Hammond and Hyles Anderson College, which is operated by the church, have been fully cooperative.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30920-church-officials-charges-not-expected.html

   

'Buycott' at ChickFil A's

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Long lines outside the ChickFil A in Hobart and others around the country after Conservative host Mike Huckabee declared August 1st Chick Fil A day...asking people to have lunch and dinner there. Some were there to support owner's stand against gay marriage. .. others to support his right to free speech.  The company also got some support from Congress. ABC's Andy Field says seventeen Republican members of Congress signed a letter supporting Chick-fil-A  --  Indiana Congressman Dan Burton says they're protesting mayors of Chicago and other cities saying they don't want the fast food company in their city. Thousands of people joined long lines to buy sandwiches to support the company.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30919-buycott-at-chickfil-as.html

   

Revamping a Crime Watch Program

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Schererville police are looking to start up their neighborhood crime watch program again in the fall,  Program spokesman Cpl. Timothy Arvanitis says the police department is in the process of "revitalizing" the community crime watch program for the town of Schererville.  Arvanitis says the police department will probably have a organizational meeting in September and that persons interested in joining the watch within town limits is asked to call the police department at (219) 322-5000 ext. 324.

Crime watch sign

 

Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30851-revamping-a-crime-watch-program.html

   

Lowell Illiana Meeting Tonight

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Two public meetings on the schedule this week for the long-discussed Illiana Expressway -- last night's was at Peotone High School. The northwest Indiana meeting is tonight at Lowell
Middle School. The Lake County starting points for three preliminary recommended corridors go like this -- two of them begin in the same place on I-65 just south of 153rd Avenue, between Lowell and Cedar Lake. The third begins about seven miles to the south of that on 65, south of 205th Avenue about a couple miles north of the Kankakee River.
  Tonight's open-house style meeting is 5-8pm

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30807-lowell-illiana-meeting-tonight.html

   

NIPSCO Turns 100

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Thursday (Aug. 2) marks Northern Indiana Public Service Company’s  100th year and the utility-giant will host a Centennial Community Celebration at their Merrillville headquarters tomorrow. Among other things, they'll announce the creation of a pilot customer appreciation program.    Today...[Aug 1] … alongside parent company NiSource, a group of NIPSCO employees will ring the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange. NiSource is also commemorating 50years of trading on the NYSE. 

Additional information from NIPSCO:

In 1912, NIPSCO’s predecessor, Calumet Electric Company, was incorporated by a group of Gary businessmen to supply power for the expansion of the Gary Railway Company.  The company’s family tree dates back further, to 1853, when the Fort Wayne Gas Light Company was established, serving a community of 4,300. Another NIPSCO predecessor, the South Bend Gas Light Company, was established in 1868 by the Studebaker brothers, of carriage and later automotive fame.

NIPSCO provides electric and or natural gas service to more than 785,000 customers in 30 counties of northern Indiana.

[all photos courtesy of NIPSCO]
Photo1
NIPSCO gas crew installs a steel gas main in a ditch. Without the appearance of any trenching equipment, the ditch was probably dug by hand.

Photo2
NIPSCO linemen during the late 1920s get prepared for work in the Angola District.


Photo3

Record clerks located at the Gary District Headquarters in the mid-1950s (including Carolyn Mosby, center – the first African American clerical employee hired by NIPSCO) received and manually recorded customer information on cards which were filed in pullout drawers.

Photo4

NIPSCO’s corporate headquarters in downtown Hammond in the early 1930s.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30796-nipsco-turns-100.html

   

Local Life Sentence Overturned

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The Indiana Supreme Court Tuesday overturned the life sentence for a woman convicted of killing her two-year-old cousin, Jada Justice, in June 2009, instead ordering a 65-year-old prison sentence for Engelica Castillo, who was convicted of murder, neglect of a dependent, battery and false informing. Court officials say the toddler's body was found in a swampy body of water in LaPorte County after Castillo claimed someone abducted the child from a Gary gas station. Officials say Castillo's co-defendant and then-boyfriend Timothy Tkachik pleaded guilty in connection with the case and cooperated with authorities, testifying against Castillo.

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Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30791-local-life-sentence-overturned.html

   

Hobart Police Seek Burglary Suspect

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Police in Hobart are looking for one of two men who broke into the Marathon gas station and made off with cash and cigarettes early Friday morning.  Published reports say surveillance video shows two men using a pry bar on the front door but one of the suspects stayed outside while the other took about 300-dollars in cigarettes and about 600-dollars in cash.  According to http://www.nwitimes.com/ police were unable to obtain a full description of the man who stayed outside but they are asking the public's help in identifying the other suspect described as being black, in his mid 30's, bald, heavy and having white or graying chin whiskers, wearing a black T-shirt with white stripes and jean shorts. Anyone with information about the crime should contact the Hobart Police Department at (219) 942-1125.

Read more: http://www.indiana105.com/news/region-news/30716-hobart-police-seek-burglary-suspect.html

   

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