Southwest flight makes emergency landing at Midway
CHICAGO (AP) - A Southwest Airlines flight from Chicago to New York made an emergency landing Tuesday after an engine warning light came on in the cockpit, an airline spokeswoman said.
The light came on shortly after Flight 321 took off from Midway International Airport headed to LaGuardia Airport, prompting pilots to return to Midway, Southwest spokeswoman Brandy King said. The aircraft experienced the problem at around 1:15 p.m. and landed around 1:35 p.m.
"It landed safely without incident," said Chicago Department of Aviation spokeswoman Karen Pride.
There were 118 passengers and five crewmembers aboard the aircraft, King said. Passengers were placed on other flights headed for LaGuardia.
ELECTRONIC MONITORING-SEXUAL ASSAULT
Teen eludes electronic monitoring, attacks student
CHICAGO (AP) - A probation officer was suspended Tuesday after a teenager on home electronic monitoring was able to leave his home earlier this month and allegedly sexually assault a pregnant Chicago State University student.
WMAQ-TV in Chicago reports Cook County Juvenile Probation Department director Rose Marie Golden said electronic monitoring procedures were not followed before Aaron Parks, 17, allegedly attacked the 24-year-old woman Sept. 10 while she was putting books in her car. The woman was forced her into her car and told to drive to a nearby alley where she was assaulted and forced into the truck. The victim was able to escape and Parks was arrested two days later.
Parks, who is charged as an adult, is being held without bond on aggravated criminal sexual assault, aggravated kidnapping and armed robbery charges.
A judge confined Parks to his mother's home after he was charged as a juvenile in the July carjacking of a woman who was forced into her car at gunpoint but escaped unharmed. Pak He was only allowed to leave home to attend school, seek medical treatment, or attend religious services.
Probation officials say all electronic monitoring records will be audited to determine if the incident involving Parks is isolated or if changes are required to make certain juveniles under court supervision are following conditions of their release.
Juvenile probation officials say the department daily monitors about 250 people in the electronic monitoring program.
New subpoena issued for Ill. anti-violence program
CHICAGO (AP) - Federal authorities in Chicago issued a new subpoena over records involving Gov. Pat Quinn's troubled anti-violence program, state officials confirmed Tuesday.
The 2010 Neighborhood Recovery Initiative, the subject of a scathing state auditor general's report for mismanagement and misspending, already has been under scrutiny by federal prosecutors in Springfield, the Cook County state's attorney and a legislative commission.
The subpoena, dated Aug. 27, was delivered to the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, the state agency that took over NRI, according to agency spokeswoman Cristin Evans. It stemmed from a February special grand jury in Chicago and sought copies of documents, memos and timesheets, among other things, to be delivered for a panel meeting Sept. 4.
She called the request "a formality" because Springfield prosecutors and the Cook County state's attorney's office already had asked for and received the same records. She said federal officials in Chicago now had them.
"The requirements of the subpoena have been fulfilled," she said in a statement.
Quinn championed the anti-violence program in 2010 to target the causes of neighborhood violence, but Republicans have alleged it was a "political slush fund" since it was started weeks ahead of the November election. Quinn, who is facing re-election with a challenge from Republican Bruce Rauner, has denied the claim.
Quinn said he took action by abolishing the agency initially running the program. Quinn spokesman Grant Klinzman said state agencies have been directed to "fully support the inquiry."
The subpoenas were first reported by the Chicago Tribune.
APNewsBreak: Chicago DEA chief heading to DC
CHICAGO (AP) - The head of the Drug Enforcement Administration's Chicago division, who has been outspoken about the growing influence of Mexican cartels in the American heartland, is leaving to take one of the agency's top posts in Washington, D.C., a DEA official said Tuesday.
Jack Riley, 56, has been named the DEA's new chief of operations - considered the federal agency's No. 3 position - and will oversee all agency activities within the U.S. and internationally, Rusty Payne, a spokesman with the DEA in Washington, told The Associated Press.
In an interview at his office Tuesday, Riley said the two biggest changes in the trafficking landscape since he came to Chicago in 2010 have been the entrenchment of Mexico's cartels in the Midwest and the resurgence of heroin, including in middle class neighborhoods.
Riley, who took part in DEA operations against heroin traffickers in the 1990s, said the narcotic has become more popular, in part, because it's now available in an easier-to-use powder form and can be snorted rather than having to be injected with needles.
"People who never would have done heroin are doing it today, like professionals and students," Riley said.
As the special agent in charge in Chicago, Riley has directed DEA operations in Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota. His previous posts included serving as head of the agency's El Paso, Texas, office along the Mexican border.
Riley is expected to begin his new job next month. His replacement in Chicago has not been named.
McLean County nixes marijuana cultivation center
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (AP) - The McLean County Board denied a special use permit for a proposed medical marijuana cultivation center on Tuesday, saying it would be more like a factory than a farm.
Board members voted 15-2 to deny the permit requested by Tim Jones, who wanted to build the facility on land he owns near the central Illinois village of Downs, The (Bloomington) Pantagraph reported.
"How many farms have 112 parking spaces and 61 hired men to farm ... and requires security?" said board member William T. Caisley. "No reasonable secure watermelon or pumpkin patch has that. I think this is an industrial use proposed to be plopped down in the middle of agriculturally zoned property."
But member Laurie Wollrab, who voted in favor of the facility, said medical marijuana "is a legal product like flowers or button mushrooms we eat at meals. They're growing something, it's just a different product."
Jones, who blamed the denial on "fear and ignorance," said his proposal is dead, because the deadline to file an application with the state is Monday.
The county Zoning Board of Appeals held two days of hearings on Jones' request earlier this month and recommended approval by the County Board.
Rauner questions medical marijuana program secrecy
CHICAGO (AP) - Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner (ROW'-nur) said Tuesday he wouldn't have signed legislation creating Illinois' medical marijuana pilot program because it includes a secret process for deciding who may grow and sell the drug.
Rauner said it's "another hallmark" of a culture of corruption under Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn. He said the public should know who's applying for a limited number of state permits, and whether the permits are given to "insiders" with political clout.
"Millions of dollars in business licenses are up for grabs and Pat Quinn wants to keep taxpayers in the dark," Rauner said.
Quinn Spokesman Grant Klinzman said the law keeps applicants' identity confidential so the state officials who award the permits won't be influenced by political connections.
"The purpose of keeping information confidential, as approved by legislators of both parties, was to ensure the highest standard of integrity of the selection process," Klinzman said.
Quinn signed Illinois' four-year program into law last year, saying it will help seriously ill patients. The program allows people with certain diseases, such as cancer, to use the drug.
The application process for cultivation center and dispensary permits started last week and ends Monday.
Rauner said Quinn shouldn't have signed the legislation because the process isn't transparent.
He said medical marijuana is "not something I've supported" but it's "not a big issue for me either way" and he has other priorities.
Quinn campaign spokeswoman Izabela Miltko called Rauner's stance "heartless" because the law will provide relief for severely ill people.
2014 MacArthur 'genius grant' winners unveiled
CHICAGO (AP) - Twenty-one people, many of whom are doing work that touches on race relations, same-sex marriage, climate change and other issues that are dominating the news, have each been awarded "genius grants" from the MacArthur Foundation.
The Chicago-based John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced on Wednesday this year's recipients of the grants that have been awarded since 1981. Recipients can spend the $625,000 any way they like.
As in years past, this year's winners are an eclectic group, including scientists, attorneys, historians, poets, mathematicians, a cartoonist and a documentary filmmaker.
Among the recipients is Jennifer Eberhardt, a social psychologist at Stanford University. Eberhardt has conducted research on racial stereotypes and crime that has prompted the Oakland, California, police department to ask for her help studying racial biases among their officers and how those biases play out on the street.
Others were recognized for their legal work, from attorney Jonathan Rapping, whose organization helps public defenders provide quality representation to indigent clients, to Mary Bonauto, a civil rights attorney who won for "breaking down legal barriers based on sexual orientation and gender identity."
The selection process is shrouded in secrecy. There's no application involved. Instead, anonymous groups make nominations and recommendations to the foundation's board of directors.
Most winners are not widely known outside their fields, but the list has over the years included such writers as Susan Sontag and Karen Russell and filmmaker John Sayles.
Nik Wallenda to tightrope walk over Chicago River
CHICAGO (AP) - Daredevil Nik Wallenda said Tuesday that his next tightrope walk will be more than 50 stories high from one high-rise building to another over the Chicago River.
Wallenda, 35, will attempt the feat without a net or harness. It will be broadcast live on the Discovery Channel at 7 p.m. ET on Nov. 2, the network said. Wallenda will start the walk at one of the two Marina Towers buildings, then travel more than two city blocks across the river on an uphill 15-degree angle to the Leo Burnett Building.
Wallenda will then make a second tightrope walk from one Marina Tower building to the other.
"There's nothing like doing this during winter in Chicago," said Wallenda, who is part of the famous acrobat family "The Flying Wallendas." ''That's a challenge for me and I love to push myself to do things that most people think are impossible."
It will be the highest skyscraper walk in Wallenda family history and the first time Wallenda has attempted such a steep-angled tightrope walk, Discovery said. Wallenda's grandfather Karl Wallenda died after falling from a tightrope in Puerto Rico in 1978.
Discovery said dozens of cameras positioned across the city and on helicopters will capture the spectacle.
Wallenda has walked across the Niagara Falls and the Little Colorado River Gorge in Arizona, near the Grand Canyon, in the past two years.
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