Joe Deacon

Reporter

Joe Deacon is a reporter at WCBU, joining in 2020 after one year as a correspondent for Bloomington-Normal sister station WGLT.

An Illinois State University graduate, Joe previously spent 18 years with The Pantagraph in Bloomington in various roles ranging from copy editor to sports reporter and assistant sports editor. He transitioned to radio with eight months as a reporter for WSOY in Decatur.

Joe was born and raised in the southwest suburbs of Chicago and is an avid White Sox fan. He also enjoys movies and video games (still, even at his age).

Ways to Connect

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

As Illinois moves past the 2 million mark for COVID-19 vaccinations, the Tri-County area also continues to reach vaccine milestones, approaching 90,000 administered doses and eclipsing 20,000 people getting their second doses.

police car
WCBU file photo

The Peoria County Sheriff's Office is warning the public about an increase in COVID-19 scammers trying to swindle people in the Peoria area.

An annual engineering event held by the Peoria Riverfront Museum is taking a new approach during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Spoon River College / Twitter

A donation effort sponsored by the Rotary Club of Canton aims to help at-risk community college students meet their needs.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria County has eclipsed 50,000 administered doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and 10,000 residents fully vaccinated, while the Tri-County region has added 77 new coronavirus infections and three additional fatalities in the past day.

Peoria City/County Health Department building
Tim Shelley / WCBU

Peoria County has moved past 250 deaths linked to COVID-19 with five more fatalities reported Wednesday.

police car
WCBU

UPDATED 11 A.M. | The Bradley University men's basketball program announced Thursday morning that junior forward Ja'Shon Henry has been cleared of wrongdoing and reinstated to the team, effective immediately.

The program issued a statement saying Henry “is neither a person of interest nor suspect in any case. He also has been cleared of possible student conduct violations.” Henry is expected to play in Thursday's 6 p.m. game against Illinois State at Carver Arena. 

Village of Morton / Facebook

With the cost of natural gas spiking, officials in Morton are encouraging people to lower their thermostats a little despite below-freezing temperatures.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

The number of people in the Tri-County area with COVID-19 has fallen sharply since Friday, while more than 4% of the region’s population is now fully vaccinated.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

While high school basketball and other sports are back in action in central Illinois, limitations remain on the number of spectators allowed, if any. So, schools have started turning to live-streaming the events for fans and family members.

Peoria County

In the wake of a murder suspect’s suicide at the Peoria County Jail over the weekend, Sheriff Brian Asbell said the facility’s staff makes every effort to prevent detainees from self-harm.

AP Photo/Julio Cortez

With the advent of remote learning options during the COVID-19 pandemic, school snow days could start to disappear.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

While the Tri-County area produced its most deaths linked to COVID-19 over a seven-day stretch since late January, the region also saw active coronavirus infections decline precipitously in the past three weeks.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

Three Woodford County residents have been announced as the Tri-County area’s latest COVID-19 victims, while the number of people from the region who have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine has topped 60,000.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Tri-County health officials on Wednesday reported four new deaths linked to COVID-19 and 139 additional cases, while the region approaches 70,000 administered doses of coronavirus vaccines.

Racial disparity remains a problem in the health care field, with fewer Black men applying to, and enrolling in, medical school today than in the 1970s.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

Tri-County health officials on Tuesday reported just 82 new COVID-19 cases from the previous day, while hospitalizations and active cases in the region declined sharply from the day before.

Peoria City/County Health Department building
Tim Shelley / WCBU

Tri-County health officials on Monday reported five new fatalities linked to COVID-19 and 270 additional infections over the weekend.

Meanwhile, the number of coronavirus patients in Peoria-area hospitals increased from 37 to 50 – with more than half of them (26) in intensive care units after showing 11 ICU beds in use on Friday. The region currently has 1,968 residents isolating at home.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

More than 15% of the Tri-County population has received the COVID-19 vaccine and 2.5% is fully vaccinated, according to the latest figures from the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Peoria's Fourth District will soon have a new city council representative, with three candidates on the ballot for the upcoming primary election.

While Peoria’s wet and windy weather Thursday necessitated some minor changes in plans, it did not dampen a midday celebration honoring the legacy of Archbishop Fulton Sheen.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A coronavirus mutation detected recently by Pekin's Reditus Laboratories is not quite identical to one commonly linked to the United Kingdom.

Peoria City/County Health Department building
Tim Shelley / WCBU

Peoria County has topped 35,000 administered doses of the coronavirus vaccine, as Tri-County health officials report three more deaths linked to COVID-19 and 153 additional infections.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

Active COVID-19 cases in the Tri-County area dropped by more than 300 in the past day, while the region added just 50 more total infections and – for the first time in more than a month – no new deaths.

police car
WCBU file photo

UPDATE 4:15 PM: A Peoria man was the suspect killed in an officer-involved shooting in East Peoria early Tuesday morning.

Peoria City/County Health Department building
Tim Shelley / WCBU

The Tri-County area added a little more than 300 new COVID-19 illnesses since Friday, but Peoria-area hospitals have fewer than 50 coronavirus patients for the first time in four months.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

More than 18,500 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the Tri-County region since last week – including 3,500 in the past day.  

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

More providers are now offering COVID-19 vaccines for those in the 1A or 1B groups.

Bond has been set at $1.5 million for Michael Dyer on two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the shooting death of a Peoria man last week.

Peoria City/County Health Department building
Tim Shelley / WCBU

A Peoria County woman in her 90s became the Tri-County area’s 513th resident to succumb to COVID-19 as the pandemic’s death toll in Illinois eclipsed 19,000.

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