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INDOT Announces Job Fair for Local Winter Positions

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The Indiana Department of Transportation says as many as thirty jobs will be available in the Region for winter work, with opportunities based out of in Gary, Rensselaer, Winamac, and Monticello. INDOT Northwest is hosting a job fair next week for winter program workers. Potential employees are urged to attend the event happening next Friday, October 4th from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. (CST), at the INDOT Gary Subdistrict, on Melton Road. Positions available include seasonal INDOT maintenance crew staff, and plow drivers during snow events this winter. INDOT also says priority at the job fair will be given to those who apply online in advance at  http://www.in.gov/spd/2334.htm under the Job Bank ID #586315.
Applicants Must Have
• Valid CDL
• High School Diploma or equivalent
• Ability to pass a drug test successfully
For more information like INDOT Northwest at www.Facebook.com/INDOTNorthwest and follow us at www.Twitter.com/INDOTNorthwest. Contact the LaPorte District toll free at 1-855-GO-INDOT....

Read more: INDOT Announces Job Fair for Local Winter Positions

 

Valparaiso Police Announce Next Coffee with a Cop

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From Valparaiso Police Department Coffee with a Cop July 26
Valparaiso Police have announced their next Coffee with a Cop is happening this Tuesday, October first, at Campbell Street Cafe, 4245 Meridian Woods Drive, just off Campbell Street. Residents are encouraged to come out between 8 and 10 am to casually chat with police, and discuss community issues – over a cup of coffee. Police Chief Michael Brickner will be there along with other members of the Valparaiso Police Department. Police say their first Coffee with a Cop events, at Viking Chili Bowl and at Suzie's Cafe in late July, were a huge success. Coffee with a Cop is a US Department of Justice initiative to build relationships with the community.  [Photo/Valparaiso Police]...

Read more: Valparaiso Police Announce Next Coffee with a Cop

 

Traffic Advisories Issued for St. John

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St. John officials have issued a couple of traffic advisories that will involve road closures beginning this Monday, September 30.
West 93rd Avenue closure:
Effective Monday, September 30th through October 4th Metro Excavating will be closing West 93rd Avenue from Belmont Avenue to Hilltop Drive (east/west traffic) for the "West 93rd Avenue to Larimer Park Ditch Project". This project is being done for the Town of St John. Metro Excavating will have "NOTICE SIGNAGE" signs put up with an established detour route on Monday, September 23rd.
Detours are as follows:
-Eastbound Traffic will detour around the closure by taking Hilltop Drive south to Larimer Drive / East on Larimer Drive to Woodland Drive / South on Woodland Drive to 94th Court / East on 94th Court to Belmont Avenue / North on Belmont Avenue to 93rd Avenue.
-Westbound Traffic will detour around the closure by taking Belmont Avenue south to 94th Court / West on 94th Court to Woodland Drive / North on Woodland Drive to Larimer Drive / West on Larimer Drive to Hilltop Drive / North on Hilltop Drive to 93rd Avenue.
West 85th Avenue (Bingo Lake Road) closure:
Norfolk Southern Railroad will be making rail repairs and closing the tracks on West 85th Avenue at the railroad crossing to both east and west bound traffic beginning Monday, September 30th and will remain closed through Monday, October 7th. Norfolk Southern Railroad will put up “NOTICE SIGNAGE” with establish detour route on Monday, September 23rd....

Read more: Traffic Advisories Issued for St. John

 

Fiery Two-Truck Crash Closes I-65 in White County

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Indiana State Police say a crash involving two trucks early this morning closed I-65 north bound in White County when one of the trucks pulling double trailers caught on fire.
Authorities say a preliminary investigation by Trooper Kent Wainscott revealed that at approximately 1:30 A.M., this Friday, September 27, 2013, morning a USF Holland International straight truck, driven by James S Wilson, 32 of Missouri parked his truck on the outer shoulder of I-65 north bound at the 187 mile marker (this is just south of the Fowler/Brookston exit) for unknown mechanical problems. Wilson had activated his four-way emergency flashers on his truck before exiting. Wilson walked around to the front passenger side of his truck when it was hit causing Wilson to be partially pinned under the front passenger drive tire. Wilson was able to free himself and was taken to Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital in Lafayette with non-life threatening injuries. The straight truck was loaded with general freight.
A Fed Ex semi pulling two trailers, driven by Vivian George Rose, 59 of Illinois, went off the road for unknown reasons and struck the USF Holland truck. The Fed Ex semi continued on for approximately 300 yards and came to rest under the 500 West overpass where it caught fire and became fully engulfed.
Rose was able to exit the semi and was taken to Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital in Lafayette with non-life threatening injuries. The Fed Ex semi was loaded with general freight.
All lanes of I-65 were closed at this location and all traffic was being diverted off at the 178 mile marker (Brookston/West Lafayette exit). It was expected that all lanes at this location would be closed for several hours to ensure the fire is completely out, for off loading of the trailers, removal of the vehicles, and clean-up of the road.
Driver’s planning to travel north on I-65 were being asked to seek an alternate route. Delays are expected to build with the morning rush.
Assisting were Brookston and Monticello Fire Departments, Tippecanoe Emergency Ambulance Service, White County Sheriff’s Department, Indiana Department of Transportation and Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division....

Read more: Fiery Two-Truck Crash Closes I-65 in White County

 

Local Football Player Dies of Genetic Heart Condition

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When an emotional La Porte varsity football team takes the field tonight, the familiar orange Slicers helmets will feature memorial stickers in remembrance of teammate Jacob West, who collapsed during a practice at Kiwanis Field Wednesday afternoon and was pronounced dead that evening at a nearby medical facility. LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan says the 17 year old linebacker for the La Porte High School football team died due to right ventricular cardiomyopathy, or a thinning of the right ventricular wall of the heart, which kept blood from being pushed out of his heart. Sullivan says no athletic physical would have been able to detect it..

The Slicers are taking on the Merrillville Pirates at 7pm this evening at Merrillville High School.
The LaPorte Community School Corporation issued an official statement yesterday, offering condolences, and announcing that a Celebration of Life service will be open to the public at Kiwanis Field this Sunday at 4:30pm:
The La Porte Community School Family wishes to express its deepest sympathy for the family and friends of Jacob West. Jacob passed away unexpectedly and he will be sorely missed. On Sunday, September 29th, a Celebration of Life Service will be held at Kiwanis Field starting at 4:30 p.m. This service is open to the public so that all can celebrate Jacob’s life and reflect on how he enriched our lives in his short time with us.
With heartfelt condolences,
The Staff, Administration and School Board of the La Porte Community School Corporation...

Read more: Local Football Player Dies of Genetic Heart Condition

 

Parking Concerns Come Up in Central Park Discussion

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The City of Valparaiso and the planning firm of Design Organization hosted a couple of public sessions at City Hall Thursday to get feedback on completing Central Park Plaza... and the issue of parking came up. Some of the comments were about bringing more places to park in downtown Valparaiso, to serve retailers and restaurants. The city is thinking about expanding Central Park by putting an open-air pavilion on a huge area just to the west across the street, that would be used year-round, but in particular, for ice-skating in the winter.  Officials say construction on the pavilion could begin in the latter half of 2014, but it probably wouldn't be ready for the 2014-2015 winter season.  [Image/Design Organization]...

Read more: Parking Concerns Come Up in Central Park Discussion

 

Chicago Man Dies After Being Hit on I-80/94

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Officials say a 23-year-old Chicago man airlifted to a Chicago-area hospital after walking out on to the Borman Expressway in Hammond about two weeks ago died Thursday. An autopsy is scheduled today. Indiana State Police say 23-year-old Talgat Orumbayev reportedly walked on the ramp from Indianapolis Boulevard to eastbound Interstate 80-94 almost getting hit, and as police were on their way to check on the pedestrian, for unknown reasons he walked out into the right lane of the interstate, just east of the ramp, where he was struck by a car....

Read more: Chicago Man Dies After Being Hit on I-80/94

 

Chickenpox Outbreak at Local Charter School

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A Northwest Indiana charter school is dealing with a chickenpox outbreak. Six students across different grade levels at Discovery Charter School in the town of Porter are said to have chickenpox, and about forty others were excluded from school Wednesday and Thursday because they weren't up-to-date on vaccinations. The school has about five-hundred students in kindergarten through eighth grade....

Read more: Chickenpox Outbreak at Local Charter School

 

Pre-Register Now for Upcoming Hunter Education Classes

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Indiana Conservation Officers are offering several Hunter Education classes throughout northwest Indiana in preparation for the upcoming hunting season. Conservation Officer Keith Wildeman says anyone who would like to attend is asked to pre-register.
Indiana Hunter Education Certification is required for all hunters born after Dec. 31, 1986. Participants will learn basic firearms safety, treestand safety, and conservation ethics.
Students are required to preregister for the course prior to attending by visiting www.indianahuntereducation.com. A complete listing of available classes is available on the website.
Upcoming classes and locations include:
Sept. 28 – Portage
Sept. 30, Oct. 1 & 3- LaPorte
Oct. 5 – Lake Village
Oct. 5 & 6 – North Judson
Oct. 11 – Morocco
Oct. 12 – Cedar Lake
Oct. 19 – Michigan City
Oct. 19 & 20 – Hammond
Nov. 9 – Michigan City
Bow season for deer begins on October 1st with firearm season for deer starting November 16th.   To hear more our interview, click News Audio On Demand at http://regionnewsteam.com/

For more hunting start dates, http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/files/fw-Hunting_Trapping_Seasons_Poster_2013-14.pdf...

Read more: Pre-Register Now for Upcoming Hunter Education Classes

 

Man Accused of Threatening Girlfriend with Handgun

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(Photo Courtesy of the Times)
A 53 year old Porter Township man faces numerous charges after he allegedly pointed a handgun at his girlfriend Wednesday night and threatened to kill her and her son because she refused to buy him beer. The Times reports Richard Day has been drinking when the incident occurred and his girlfriend informed officers she grabbed his arm and he fired a shot that went out their kitchen door towards a neighbor's home. According to the article, police confiscated nine vials of steroids from the residence and a total of 26 guns, including the one allegedly used in the incident, which Day reported denied ever pointing at his girlfriend....

Read more: Man Accused of Threatening Girlfriend with Handgun

 

9 Chicago Gang Members Face Racketeering Charges

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Nine alleged members of a violent Chicago street gang have been charged with federal racketeering charges. ABC News reports the indictment claims the nine were part of a near South Side Street gang known as the Hobos, who US Attorney Gary Shapiro says intimidated the neighborhood for years through the use of violence, intimidation, murders, attempted murders, and assaults with firearms against anyone who posed a threat to them, or jeopardized their operations.  Four of the nine alleged gang members face a mandatory life sentence, or the death penalty if convicted of murder....

Read more: 9 Chicago Gang Members Face Racketeering Charges

   

Cause of Death for West, Public Service Sunday

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(Photo Courtesy of LaPorte High School)
An autopsy was conducted today on a LaPorte High School varsity football player who collapsed during practice Wednesday, and who was pronounced dead at a local hospital later that evening. LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan says 17 year old Jacob West died due to right ventricular cardiomyopathy, or a thinning of the right ventricular wall of the heart, which kept blood from being pushed out of his heart. Sullivan says no athletic physical would have been able to detect it and while unfortunate and sad, it was a natural death.
An emotional LaPorte varsity football team will take to the field tomorrow tonight, in Merrillville, with the familiar orange Slicers helmets featuring memorial stickers in remembrance of their fallen teammate. The LaPorte Community School Corporation issued an official statement today, offering condolences, and announcing that a "Celebration of Life" service will be open to the public at Kiwanis Field this Sunday at 4:30pm....

Read more: Cause of Death for West, Public Service Sunday

   

Improving Civil Legal Services to Low Income Hoosiers

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A statewide commission was established this week by the Indiana Supreme Court to develop a five-year plan to improve the availability of civil legal services for low-income Hoosiers. The Indiana Commission to Expand Access to Civil Legal Services is expected to meet four times a year and must provide the court with a progress report by June 30th. The Commission is meant to study groups and organizations that already provide services to low-income Hoosiers and improve cooperation between them....

Read more: Improving Civil Legal Services to Low Income Hoosiers

   

Hamlet Man Arrested for Hit and Run Accident

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(Photo Courtesy of the LaPorte Police Department)
A 40 year old Hamlet man faces numerous charges after a hit and run accident in LaPorte Wednesday night. LaPorte Police report they were called to the area of Rose and McCollum Street, just after 10pm, where a witness informed them he heard a crash and observed a dark-colored pickup truck with a flat front tire, traveling east. Officers were able to follow gauges in the pavement, which ultimately lead to the suspect vehicle, which was found heading south on Highway 35, with sparks coming from the front tire area. Police say officers were able to stop the vehicle at Greenlawn Drive and County Road 400 South, and the driver, William Conner, was taken into custody and faces multiple operating while intoxicated charges, resisting law enforcement, driving on a suspended license, possession of marijuana, and other misdemeanors charges. ...

Read more: Hamlet Man Arrested for Hit and Run Accident

   

Funding Secured for Deep River-Portage Burns Waterway

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The Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission announced today that the Indiana Department of Environmental Management has selected the four-year project proposal for funding for the Deep River-Portage Burns Waterway Watershed Initiative. The Deep River-Portage Burns Waterway watershed covers nearly 180 square miles and is the largest watershed in Northwest Indiana's Lake Michigan drainage area. NIRPC reports IDEM has identified approximately 125 miles of stream in the watershed that are considered impaired, with some of the known water quality issues being E. coli, siltation, low dissolved oxygen levels, and impaired biotic communities, which they report as being by far the most prevalent issue. IDEM is currently assessing water chemistry, habitat and biological communities at 35 different sites strategically located throughout the watershed and the information gathered will be used to develop a Total Maximum Daily Load report which will be incorporated into the watershed management plan.
IDEM has created a webpage for Deep River-Portage Burns Waterway TMDL study to help disseminate information such as public meeting dates, quarterly water quality data results, and site photographs (http://www.in.gov/idem/nps/3893.htm).  The next TMDL public meeting is scheduled for Thursday, December 5th beginning at 1p.m. at the Lake County Extension and Soil & Water Conservation District offices in Merrillville.  The watershed management project is expected to begin this January with a public meeting kick-off which NIRPC will announce as the project start nears closer. NIRPC hopes to draw in other partners as the initiative moves forward....

Read more: Funding Secured for Deep River-Portage Burns Waterway

   

Names of Deceased in Gary Murder/Suicide Released

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Gary Police say a husband and wife were pronounced dead at the scene this morning in a murder-suicide. Corporal Gabrielle King says at about 6 am, Gary Police responded to a call of shots fired in the one-thousand block of Harrison Street. Officers found 43-year-old Fredrick Smith and 37-year-old Alicia Smith in a bedroom, unresponsive, both victims of gunshots. Corporal King says a 17-year-old female told officers she heard her mom and step dad arguing, then she heard a gunshot, so she gathered her siblings and took them to a neighbor's house, while she called 911, then returned to her house and found her mom unresponsive and asked her stepfather, 'What did you do?' The 43-year-old man then turned the gun on himself, pulled the trigger, and shot himself in the head. The Lake County Coroner's Office has ruled Alicia Smith's death a homicide, and Fredrick Smith's death a suicide....

Read more: Names of Deceased in Gary Murder/Suicide Released

   

Portage Police Investigate Armed Robbery

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In Portage, police are investigating an armed robbery. At around 8-o'clock Wednesday night, police responded to the MCR Short Stop at the southeast corner of Central Avenue and Hamstrom Road. Authorities say the suspect displayed a semi-automatic pistol and fled in an unknown direction. He was described as a white male, wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt, dark colored jeans and a black mask. Anyone who was passing through the area around the time of the robbery who observed anything suspicious is asked to contact the Portage Police Department at 219-762-3122 and ask for Detective Grynovich....

Read more: Portage Police Investigate Armed Robbery

   

Police: Husband, Wife Dead in Murder/Suicide

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Gary Police say a husband and wife were pronounced dead at the scene this morning in an apparent murder-suicide. Corporal Gabrielle King says at about 6 am, Gary Police responded to a call of shots fired in the one-thousand block of Harrison Street, where they came into contact with a 17-year-old female who was outside in front of the house screaming.  Corporal King says the 17-year-old told officers that her mom and her stepdad were inside the residence and both had been shot. Officers found a 43-year-old male and a 37-year-old female in a bedroom, unresponsive, both victims of gunshots. “The 17-year-old told officers that she heard her mom and stepdad arguing, then she heard a gunshot. So she gathered her siblings and took them to a neighbor's house, while she called 911,” Corporal King said. “The 17-year-old then returned to her house and found her mom unresponsive and asked her stepfather, 'What did you do?' The 43-year-old man then turned the gun on himself, pulled the trigger, and shot himself in the head” . Their names have not yet been released. Police say all five children are with family members.
...

Read more: Police: Husband, Wife Dead in Murder/Suicide

   

Did You See Fireball This Morning?

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The American Meteor Society reports getting nearly two-hundred reports of a large fireball this morning [September 26th] around 7 am Eastern time. Their website says witnesses from Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Missouri reported a bright light traveling across the morning sky from west to east.
Image: http://www.amsmeteors.org/2013/09/large-fireball-spotted-in-midwest/...

Read more: Did You See Fireball This Morning?

   

Emergency Management Vehicles Get New Logo

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Crown Point's Board of Public Works and Safety has approved a new logo for the city's Emergency Management Department vehicles to make them more visible and set them apart from other first responders. The design change, the first in more than twenty years, replaces a smaller logo that city officials say was more difficult to spot....

Read more: Emergency Management Vehicles Get New Logo

   

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