Headlines for Wednesday, July 22nd

Fairfield police arrested 20-year-old Tanner J.R. Buckman, 19-year-old Jonathan M. Richardson, and 21-year-old Austin P. Frazier this morning in relation to a burglary investigation at the Conoco Convenience Store at 201 West Main Street. The three were lodged in the Wayne County Jail, pending the setting of bond.

A 17-year-old Flora resident was air evaced from a crash south of Cisne on July 10th. Police say the teen was southbound before losing control and overturning on a county road. One passenger was also air evaced from the scene, and two others were taken to Clay County Hospital by North Wayne EMS.

19-year-old Breanna E. Boles was cited after a single-car crash yesterday afternoon just north of Fairfield. Deputies say she blacked out while on a county road, drove through a bean field, and struck a concrete-block burn pit. A tow truck was called to the scene, and the vehicle sustained over $1,500 damage.

Wayne County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of the person or persons who recently stole an antique yard sign- a Texico Star standing six feet tall. Anyone with information should call or text Crime Stoppers at 842-9777.

Wayne County 4-H members recently exhibited their projects virtually for this year’s General Projects Show; more than 10 4-Hers were selected to advance to the Illinois State Fair General Projects Show, which will also be held virtually this year.

The Grayville Hog Roast is scheduled for this Saturday at the pavilion in downtown Grayville. The Josh Gray Memorial Corn Hole Tournament will begin at 2, and anyone seeking more information about the tournament should contact Debbie Gray at 384-7505. The food line will open at 5 p.m., and Live Music will run from 5 to 8.

The Fairfield Public School District 112 Board of Education met Monday night and approved the framework for a return to school plan. A more polished plan is expected to be distributed later this week. The board also accepted the resignation of Stacey Lane and employed Sheila Massie, Heather Laird, and Tina Johnson.

New Hope School had discussed a tentative plan for returning to its school prior to its board meeting last night. No action was expected on the plan, which included distance learning only for students who were immunocompromised, or whose families were. The school said the plans were very much subject to change as school draws closer.

The Wayne County 4-H Foundation will hold its annual Pork Chop Dinner this Friday. Serving will be from 5 to 7 p.m. in a drive-through outside the Wayne County Fairgrounds Floral Hall. The cost of a meal will be $10, and additional pork chops will be available for $3 each. Cars should enter the fairgrounds’ main gate. Anyone seeking more information should contact Melinda States at 599-6510 or Tanya Wells at 854-2711.

State Representative Darren Bailey says he has been waiting for several months to hear the results of an investigation into Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and ComEd. Allegations surfaced last week that the Speaker had accepted bribes for contracts and favorable legislation, and Bailey says more key figures may also be implicated.

The Illinois Department of Public Health announced 955 new cases of COVID-19 yesterday afternoon and 23 additional deaths. Statewide totals sat at 163,703 cases and 7,324 deaths. Lawrence, Marion, and Wabash counties each announced new cases yesterday, but Wayne and Edwards counties did not.

Crop conditions improved over the last week, according to the latest statewide weekly crop report. 69 percent of corn is silking, nine percent is in the dough stage, and 63 percent of the crop is rated in good-to-excellent condition. 55 percent of soybeans are blooming, and 67 percent of the crop is in good-to-excellent condition. 94 percent of winter wheat had been harvested, and the second cutting of alfalfa was 75 percent complete. Average statewide topsoil moisture sat at one percent very short, 17 percent short, 77 percent adequate, and five percent surplus.

Reports say President Trump may send federal law enforcement to Chicago to help combat recent violence and crime, but Governor J.B. Pritzker says he will try to stop federal protective service agents from coming to the city. He says it is his job to protect the civil liberties of Illinois residents, so the state should be consulted first. He has called the Department of Homeland Security but was told not to expect an immediate response.

54-year-old DeSoto resident James Deese was sentenced Monday to 25-years in prison for the murder and dismemberment of 76-year-old Frank Stonemark. Stonemark’s wife and Deese’s lover, Carmen Stonemark, had previously pleaded guilty to solicitation to commit murder and concealment of a homicidal death, and she had been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

River stages as of this morning:  the Little Wabash east of Fairfield stands at 21.13 feet, above the 17 ft. flood stage. Meanwhile, the Skillet Fork at Wayne City has a reading of 6.16 feet (flood stage is 15 ft.). The Little Wabash below Clay City is at 20.26 feet (flood stage is 18 ft.). Bonpas Creek at Browns reads 8.81 feet, and the Little Wabash at Main Street in Carmi reads 14.72 feet. The Wabash River at Mt. Carmel sits at 8.76 feet.

Today’s crude oil price is $35.00, up $1.25 from yesterday. The September crude oil price is $41.53, up $0.23 from yesterday morning.