Public Safety

Gov. Bruce Rauner says Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has "failed horribly" on public safety after gunfire in the city last weekend injured more than 70 people and killed at least 11.

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner says the state should be able to execute those who kill police officers or commit mass shootings. The Governor proposed that and several other measures on Monday in an amendatory veto of gun legislation.

The Illinois Senate approved a measure intended to upgrade security at public, large-scale events. Under the plan, law enforcement could use drones as monitors.

But Democratic state Senator Kwame Raoul of Chicago says this could also be a pathway for invading people’s privacy – and wants officers to obtain a warrant first.

“I want to trust to utilize the drones to protect against a tragic incident at Lollapalooza or some other mass gathering at a park. I’m not left with the feeling of comfort by a reference to no legitimate law enforcement purpose.”

Gov. Bruce Rauner has a track record of handing the toughest topics to small bipartisan panels of legislators. These “working groups” have been tasked with solving budget and pension problems, plus criminal justice reform. And weeks after the Florida mass shooting, Rauner formed a working group on public safety. Like the others, that group meets in private.


Speaking after today's meeting, State Rep. Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) said it's probably meant to prevent politicians from grandstanding.

Peoria Police Department

Lonnie Smith, 46, made his first court appearance in Pekin Friday on charges that include the drug-induced homicide of Anthony Phillips.

The Department of Justice has asked a federal judge to toss a Chicago lawsuit targeting the Trump administration's bid to withhold public safety grants to so-called sanctuary cities refusing tougher enforcement of immigration laws.

The U.S. Justice Department contends the city of Chicago and Cook County violated federal immigration laws when they were awarded public safety grants last year.

Chicago has asked a federal judge to halt President Donald Trump's policy of withholding public safety grants from so-called sanctuary cities.
The request was filed late Thursday as part of Chicago's lawsuit challenging the policy, which targets cities that don't fully cooperate with stricter enforcement of U.S. immigration law.
A preliminary injunction, if granted, could freeze the safety-grants policy at least until the litigation plays out.

Pekin Police Department / Facebook

The Pekin Police Department wants its beat officers to get to know people in the area they patrol. A program called Community and Police Problem Solving or CAPPS is using Facebook and quarterly meetings to get people talking with the officers assigned to their neighborhood. Each of the five Pekin police districts has its own Facebook page with information about the area and the beat officers will manage their page. Each page also has the date of its district meeting. All the meetings will happen at 5:30.

Local Cooling Center Information

Jun 12, 2017
US Dept. of Energy / Flickr

The National Weather Service in Lincoln has issued a Heat Warning for our region until Saturday, 7/22 at 8 P.M.  With the onset of hot summer temperatures have some groups urging extra caution.

Click here for the complete cooling center list.

GALESBURG, Ill. (AP) - Knox County in western Illinois is launching a text message and email notification system to inform residents about emergencies.

Bre LaRow / Flickr/Creative Commons


As Halloween parties get underway, State and Local law enforcement, as well as the Illinois Department of Transportation, are reminding drivers to exercise some extra awareness. IDOT Spokesman Brian Williamsen says children will also be out past dark.

"You know it’s dark outside, it’s getting darker earlier and earlier," Williamsen said. "Kids are going to be out when they probably normally would not be out, so definitely be aware of that.”


Judges in DeKalb County are studying bail practices for criminal defendants to ensure that they're fair and maintain public safety.  Courts in the county for several years have moved away from requiring cash bond to remain free while awaiting trial. 

Prosecutors and law enforcement officials say Illinois budget stalemate is undermining public safety because of cuts to after-school and diversion programs for youth. 

The Illinois Senate has sent legislation to Gov. Bruce Rauner that frees up billions of dollars for local governments. 

A group of suburban Chicago leaders says Gov. Bruce Rauner's proposed reduction to local governments' share of income tax revenues could equal public safety cuts. 

Local officials say if congress doesn’t reach an agreement to fund the Department of Homeland Security it could hurt the area’s disaster preparedness.  Michael Masters heads Cook County’s Department of Homeland Security.