Week in Review for May 14th-18th, 2012

Here is a look at some of the news that made the news in the Kankakee Valley this week:

Members of the Starke County Council and Commissioners met in a public hearing to discuss authorizing the use of up to $50,000 in Save the hospital funds to be used to hire a consultant to evaluate IU Health Starke Hospital’s real and personal property in a possible hospital sale. A motion was made to allow that money to be spent on a consultant to evaluate the property, building and equipment as well as offer various options for the sale, but the motion died. The Council members will discuss the issue again during their regular meeting on May 21st at 5:00 p.m.

Wesley Swindle of Knox was arrested Friday after he allegedly battered a man. Swindle was complaining that he couldn’t turn his semi around in the yard at a residence on 50 East because of all of the cars. His frustration was reportedly taken out on a man at the home. Swindle hit the man with his shoulder to his stomach and he also allegedly hit the man with a beer bottle and a stick. He reportedly threatened to retrieve a gun shortly before police arrived on the scene. Swindle was arrested on preliminary charges of Battery and Intimidation.

Vandalism was reported in the Francesville area on May 7th and a juvenile has been identified as the culprit. Pulaski County police received information that two juveniles were involved in an initial incident but one juvenile was questioned about other complaints of vandalism. The juvenile reportedly admitted to committing 20 other acts of vandalism to businesses and other property. The suspect was released to his mother and this case has been forwarded to the Pulaski County Prosecutor for further review.

The North Judson Town Board will wait to see if the state-wide smoking ban covers parks when it takes effect July 1st. The Board would like to erect no smoking signs near the shelters in the Town Park but if the park is included in the smoking ban, no signs will be needed. The Railroad Board told the Town Board that they are working on getting paperwork prepared to request a grant for railroad work at the crossing on U.S. 30. Clerk-Treasurer Donna Henry said the town is responsible for that crossing as it is owned by the town. More information on those repairs will be given during the Board’s next meeting.

A mobile food pantry will be rolling into Knox on May 24th and will stop at the First Pentecostal Church of Knox. You will be able to get fresh perishable items and dry goods for FREE from 10:00 a.m. to Noon that day. Produce, grains, dairy and meat will be available for free on a first come, first-served basis. This is a service through the Food Bank of Northern Indiana and it is available to all residents in need of food assistance. You are asked to bring a photo ID with you to this event. The church is located at 509 S. Roosevelt Road in Knox.

North Judson Town Board

The Town of North Judson received $13,641 in extra EDIT funds from Starke County Auditor Kay Chaffins. The money came from the Indiana Department of Revenue’s computer glitch which found $206 million in funds that weren’t disbursed state-wide when required. The money will be placed into the town’s Rainy Day Fund. A representative with the Indiana Association of Cities and Towns suggested that it go into that account just in case the money needs to be sent back to the state.

Robert "Ryan" Corbin

The Knox Community School Board approved the resignation of Robert “Ryan” Corbin at their recent meeting. He had been suspended after an alleged incident involving inappropriate behavior between Corbin and a student. They have both reportedly admitted to having telephone conversations with other and messaging through Facebook and texting. Corbin pleaded not guilty to two counts of Attempted Child Seduction at his April initial hearing in Starke Circuit Court and his attorney announced his intent at that time to file a motion to dismiss the charges against him.

Bryon Green
Brandi Wright

Bryon Green and Brandi Wright were arrested Tuesday after officers from the Starke County Sheriff’s Department found $700 in assorted bills, crack cocaine, marijuana and two different types of prescription medication during a search of their residence in Monterey. They face preliminary charges of Possession of Crack Cocaine/Narcotic Drugs, Possession of a Schedule II and Schedule IV Controlled Substance and Possession of Marijuana.

The Morgan County Jail in Martinsville got a visit from members of the Starke County Jail Committee this week. The members analyzed aspects of the jail to see if the facility would be an adequate fit for a possible new jail facility in Starke County. Paul Downing of the DLZ Engineering Firm accompanied the members on their tour. The Morgan County Jail is one of the newer jails built by DLZ.

A Memorandum of Understanding has been approved by the Eastern Pulaski School Corporation and the Teacher’s Association. The wording in the document states that the corporation would not pay a new teacher coming into the corporation more than five years at the Master’s level. Superintendent Dr. Robert Klitzman explained that this is a practice that most schools take part in and the Board and the Teachers’ Association wanted it in writing and it was approved Monday night.

Winamac Town Hall

Winamac Police Chief Mike Buchanan told the Town Board this week that his department and the Indiana State Police Crime Lab are investigating a few burglary incidents within town limits. Evidence is being collected in the cases. The Town Board members also heard that the Winamac Town Park employees are busy preparing the park for the summer. Mowing and other maintenance issues are being taken care of just in time for the warmer weather.

While some areas of the country won’t be experiencing Fourth of July fireworks celebrations as held in previous years, the Starke County Fireworks celebration is still scheduled. Half of the funds have been raised to hold the event at the Starke County Airport on July 4th. Another fundraiser has been scheduled to help raise money for the event. A port-a-pit chicken fundraiser will be held on June 23rd at the Knox Fire Station. Donations for the fireworks are being collected now at Knox City Hall.

The Winamac Town Board approved a request by the Safe Routes to School members asking that Superior Street be changed to a one-way street. A portion of the Panhandle pathway collects at Superior Street and the Safe Routes officials believe that if Superior Street were made a one-way street, it would be safer for the children who utilize that portion of the pathway as a safe route to school. The Board voted in favor of the change and the change will be effective after an ordinance is approved.

Michael Derby

Michael Derby, of Knox, was arrested Tuesday after police found him to be in possession of items stolen on a pawn list. Starke County Sheriff’s Department officers linked the stolen items back to the victim’s son. Derby was arrested on preliminary charge of Theft and Receiving Stolen Property.

Knox garbage fees could go up if residents don’t do more to recycle. Knox City Clerk-Treasurer Jeff Houston said that one truck usually picks up the garbage on Mondays and Thursdays and there is so much refuse that a second truck may need to be added to the routes which will increase garbage fees. The city is asking you to recycle as much as possible to help keep down fees.

A stone mason adds Tauteris' name to the War Memorial

A stone mason was working on the Stake County Courthouse War Memorial yesterday adding the name of Spc. Robert Tauteris, Jr., a soldier from Hamlet, who lost his life while on active duty in Afghanistan. He died January 5th after the truck he was riding in was struck by a roadside bomb and he was killed. Since the start of the U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 15, 950 U.S. service members have been wounded in hostile action and 1,534 have died.

And that is just some of the news that made the news in the Kankakee Valley this week.