Week in Review for Oct. 8-12, 2012

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

If you would like to see information about an inmate in the Pulaski County Jail, you can obtain that information by going to pulaskisheriff.net. The list can be found on the lower right-hand side of the home page. When you click on an individual inmate, you can get information on when that person was arrested, their mugshot and the current charges filed against that person. In other technology upgrades at the jail, a video device was installed which allows a family member or attorney the ability to speak to an inmate via computer.

Knox School Board

The Knox Community School Board was brought up to speed on the demolition project at the Washington Township school. Washington Township Trustee Shelly Kemble explained that demolition bids were received and the Washington Township Board is trying to gather more funds to help fund the demolition. The Board is asking permission from the board to log some woods just east of the property to help the project. The school board is expected to act on that request at the next board meeting on Monday, October 15.

Work is still being done in Wythogan Park. Park Superintendent George Byer said that the majority of stumps and trees have been removed, but there are 50 that still need to be removed. This work will be divided between the street department and a contractor. Bids for stump removal have not yet been received. The park board is also going to purchase new playground equipment. A new set of swings and two slides are on the list, but those purchases will be made at a later date.

28-year-old James L. Miller II of Valparaiso died Sunday afternoon after performing stunts at the FMX Paradise Motocross Park in Medaryville. A witness told police that Miller made a jump on his dirt bike and the bike landed on the front wheel. The bike then overturned and Miller landed on his head. He died of his injuries at the scene. Miller was at the motocross park with a friend when the accident occurred. The case remains under investigation with the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department and the Pulaski County Coroner’s Office.

David Zeisel of Elburn was recently sentenced to serve six-and-a-half years in federal prison and three years of supervised release after he admitted in a plea agreement that he robbed the LaPorte Savings Bank in April. He pleaded guilty to the charge of Aggravated Bank Robbery. He admitted that he entered the bank, brandished a gun to several employees and demanded money. He made his way to the vault where he escaped with money. Zeisel was pursued by police and during the pursuit, Zeisel threw the money out of the car window along with the gun used in the robbery and the clothes he wore. He was eventually apprehended but not before damage was done to a LaPorte County Sheriff’s Department squad car. Zeisel was ordered to pay $102,967.23 in restitution.

Pulaski County Coroner Steve VanDerAa has ruled 19-year-old Devin M. Holbrook’s death as a drug overdose. VanDerAa said the complete toxicology results are still pending but the preliminary results indicate that there were high levels of narcotics in his system at the time of his death. He died September 29 after he fell asleep at a friend’s house after doing some landscaping work outside a residence in Francesville.

Paul Minix, 49, of Winamac has pleaded guilty in a plea agreement in federal court to a charge of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Minix was arrested on a warrant initiated by the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Division after they conducted an investigation. The grand jury indicted Minix on two counts of Possession of a Firearms by a Convicted Felon. Sentencing has been set for January 10, 2013 in U.S. District Court in South Bend.

Over $2,400 was raised for a Winamac second-grade student to help in his fight against leukemia. Student Council Advisor, Karen Butler, organized a penny war fundraiser with the goal of raising as much money as possible for the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent in honor of second grade student Aiden Spoor. Five gallon water jugs were placed in each grade sponsor’s room and in five days’ time, the jugs were filled with over $2,400 in coins donated by all of students. On Monday, Aiden visited the high school and thanked everyone for raising the money in his honor. Butler said it was a positive experience for Aiden Spoor and the students.

Jason Danekas was sentenced last week in Starke Circuit Court after he pleaded guilty to a charge of Intimidation as a Class D Felony. Danekas was arrested in June after he threatened the life of his mother and brother in their home in Knox. He had picked up a large knife and threatened them after an argument escalated. He fled the scene before police arrived, but was later taken into custody. Danekas was sentenced to 18 months in the Department of Corrections with 12 months suspended. He will also serve 12 months on probation.

Marshall County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Arthur Lawrence of Plymouth last week after officers arrived at his home in the 1700 block of Ritter Street and found several “one pot” meth labs, meth, more narcotics and meth paraphernalia. He was taken to the Marshall County Jail where he faces a charge of Dealing/Delivering/Manufacturing Methamphetamine from a previous incident. Formal charges in this incident are pending with the Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office.

Knox Mayor Rick Chambers

Are you interested in helping to organize next year’s Harvest Festival in Knox? Knox Mayor Rick Chambers is seeking the help from an organization or number of individuals to take over the festival for next year. The coordinator will be responsible for putting together events, contacting vendors, lining up entertainment, manage the parade and more. Chambers received the financial report for this year’s festival which showed a profit of just over $440. In the past, the festival has showed a profit of more than $7,000.

Starke County Courthouse

Knox resident, Lonzo Jackson was sentenced in Starke Circuit yesterday after he pleaded guilty in a plea agreement with the state to a charge of Possession of Chemical Reagents or Precursors with Intent to Manufacture within 1,000 Feet of a School. He was in possession of lithium batteries and pseudoephedrine at his grandmother’s house which is located near a church with preschool services. He will serve six years on home detention and two years of probation. In another sentencing hearing, Billy Minix of Knox pleaded guilty to a charge of Battery to a Family or Household Member with a Person less than 16 Years of Age Present. He grabbed his son by the throat in the presence of his daughter. He was sentenced to 14 months in the Department of Corrections, all of which were suspended. He will also serve eight months on probation.