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Body Found in Boone Twp Ditch Is Missing Akron, IN Man

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The body of man found Monday night in a ditch in the area of County Road 500 West and County Road 1000 South, in Boone Township, has been identified. The Porter County Sheriff's Office reports the deceased is that of 32 year old Ruben Paredes (pair-dez), of Akron, Indiana. Authorities say the Akron man was reported as a missing person by his wife in early February, and a joint homicide investigation is underway. On Tuesday, Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris performed an autopsy on the victim, whose death was cause by an apparent gunshot wound. Anyone with information is asked to please contact the Porter County Sheriff's Department.
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FBI Releases Description of Suspects in Boston Bombing

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ABC News reports the FBI has has identified two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing. This afternoon officials released photos of the suspects and asked for the public's help in identifying the two men. Rick DesLauriers is the FBI special agent in Boston says suspect one is wearing a dark hat, suspect two is wearing a white hat. Suspect two set down a backpack at the site of the second explosion just in front of the Forum restaurant.
The FBI considers them to be armed and extremely dangerous. No one should approach them, and no should should attempted to apprehend them except law enforcement.
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Read more: FBI Releases Description of Suspects in Boston Bombing

 

Illinois Governor Declares State of Emergency

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ABC News reports the governor of Illinois has declared a state of emergency after heavy rains brought flooding to the Chicago area. North of Chicago, the Fox and Des Plaines rivers are swollen, with the rate with which the river is rising on the Des Plaines is very rapid, nearly three feet since last night. Officials in Lake County, Illinois have been dispatching sandbags. The public works department has processed nearly 200-thousand sandbags out to local municipalities and townships. Meanwhile in Chicago some locks were opened along Lake Michigan reversing the flow of the Chicago River back to the lake.
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Read more: Illinois Governor Declares State of Emergency

 

WX Cancels Wednesday's HSC Game, No Makeup

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GARY, Ind. — Wednesday’s postponed High School Challenge contest between North Newton and South Newton has been canceled and will not be made up. Here is the remainder of the High School Challenge schedule. All games for this weekend are on as of right now.
 
Friday, April 19th
4:30 p.m. - *Lew Wallace vs. Roosevelt
7:30 p.m. - *East Chicago vs. MC Marquette
 
Saturday, April 20th
1:00 p.m. - *Michigan City vs. Boone Grove
4:00 p.m. - *Chesterton vs. Griffith
7:00 p.m. - *Victory Christian vs. Calumet Christian
 
Tuesday, April 23rd 
7:30 p.m. - *Hales Franciscan vs. St. Patrick
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Tips for Evading Fake Online Boston Charities

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In the wake of Monday's bombing at the Boston Marathon, Scambook, the Internet’s leading complaint resolution platform, cautions the public to watch out for fake charities run by criminals who exploit national tragedy via the Internet. Over a dozen charity domains were registered in regards to Boston with names like "bostonmarathondonations.com", "bostonmarathonvictimfund.com" and "bostonmarathonattack.com".   
To avoid giving money to a fake charity, Scambook recommends donating to well-established organizations like the Red Cross, Boston Children's Hospital or One Fund Boston. If an individual is considering donating to a different organization, Scambook advises the following 5 tips to avoid a charity scam:
1. Check the organization online. Contact the State Attorney General or the National Association of State Charity Officials (NASCO) to find out if the organization is officially registered. Watchdog sites guidestar.org and charitynavigator.org are also recommended.
2. Don't trust viral stories from supposed victims. In the wake of a national tragedy, dozens of heart-breaking stories circulate through social media and email. Don’t make any donations to individuals with whom there stands no personal relationship or verification of the claims.
3. Don't give in to pressure to donate. Even in times of need, a legitimate charity will never pressure anyone to donate. If an individual soliciting donations is rude, threatening, or refuses to answer questions, it's unlikely that they're representing a real charity. Call the organization they claim to represent.
4. Stop and remember past donations. Charity scammers often try to build trust with their victims by thanking them for past donations.  If contacted, pause and think about your history of donations. A legitimate charity will be able to provide the date of the donation or other verifying information.
5. Watch out for unsolicited text messages. Be wary of any text messages asking for donations. Although legitimate charities can receive donations via text message, it is highly improbable that they will send out unsolicited text messages for help.
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Gary PD Asks Those Walking to School to Do So in Numbers

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Gary police are asking kids who walk to school, to try and do so in a group if possible, after an incident Wednesday morning. Gary Police Public Information Corporal Gabrielle King says a 14 year old was grabbed from behind while walking southbound on Washington Street to school, at 8:43am. Corporal King says the suspect, a black male, took the girl in an abandoned building in the 41-hundred block of Washington, fondled her, and left the scene. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Gary Police Department.
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Hammond PD Seek Public's Help in Armed Robbery

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Hammond Police are asking for the public's help regarding an armed robbery that occurred at the Super Gas, in the 75-hundred block of Columbia Avenue, around 2am, on March 31st. Authorities say the suspect a male, described as being in his late teens to early twenties, approximately five-foot-nine inches tall, weighing around 140 pounds, wearing a dark colored jacket, red hooded sweatshirt, dark colored pants, gloves, and black shoes with a white mask. Police says the weapon used in the robbery was described as a black automatic handgun.
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(Photos Courtesy of the Hammond PD)
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Power Restored Along US 30 in Valpo

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Tipsters report power has been restored to the area along US 30 in Valparaiso. Power reportedly went out sometime after 1:30 this afternoon, affecting over 11-hundred customers for about a half-hour or so.
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Over 11 Hundred without Power Along US 30 in Valpo

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Over a 11-hundred customers are without power in Valparaiso at last check. NIPSCO's Outage Map reports crews have been assigned, with power estimated to be restored by 5pm this afternoon. Tipster are reporting no electricity from County Road North 250 West to Horseprairie, along U-S 30. Power reportedly went out sometime after 1:30 this afternoon.
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Hammond Road Closures Due to Storm

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We got word that emergency sirens were going off in Lansing this morning, reportedly someone spotted what they thought was rotation in the clouds... in nearby Hammond heavy rains have shut down some roads. This morning Hammond Police reported the following closures:
-Northcote [north-cott] Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
-Columbia Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
- Sheffield Ave, from Calumet to 141st Street
- 129th and New York Ave
-136th and Sheffield to Illinois
Also, INDOT reported Cline Avenue is closed between Riley Road and Calumet Avenue (East Chicago)
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Flood Exercise Friday in Gary Canceled Due to Flooding

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A flood fighting exercise that was scheduled for tomorrow morning, near Indiana University Northwest, in Gary, has been canceled due to flooding. The drill would have been the first of its kind in Gary, with Harrison Avenue to have been closed using sandbags, in light of the floods back in September of 2008, that left nearly the entire main campus parking lot along 33rd Avenue under water, along with significant portions of the campus grounds.
Just about a month ago, there was a Hammond/Highland flood prep drill that had Kennedy Avenue shut down near the Borman for a few hours overnight. The exercise used concrete blocks and sandbags to build a 'wall' in just a couple hours on Kennedy Avenue as if flood waters were rising and was held in conjunction with the Army Corps of Engineers to make sure region responders, including public works and safety officials, are ready to act quickly in the event of a major flood.
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Indiana Flu Deaths Increase to 70

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Two flu-related deaths have been reported this week by the Indiana State Department of Health, bringing the current total of flu-related deaths this season in the state to seventy. Five deaths occurred in individuals younger than 18 years of age. Five deaths occurred in Lake County, though no other information was released. The department does not report the number of deaths in a county until that number reaches five. Sixty-four of the cases involved individuals with underlying medical conditions. Flu season generally runs from October through May. State Health Commissioner Dr. William VanNess says everyone should still be diligent with hand washing.
Additional tips from the Indiana State Department of Health:
Dr. VanNess says practicing the following “Three C’s” will help protect you and prevent the spread of flu.
·        Clean: properly wash your hands frequently with warm, soapy water.
·        Cover: cover your cough and sneeze with your arm or a disposable tissue.
·        Contain: stay home from school/work when you are sick to keep your germs from spreading.
Flu symptoms include cough, fever, sore throat and body aches. Anyone experiencing symptoms should contact their health care provider. Individuals 65 and older are more susceptible to complications and death from flu and are urged to seek treatment quickly if they experience symptoms.
Flu vaccination is recommended for anyone six months of age or older. It is especially important for those at higher risk of complications related to the flu, to get vaccinated. High risk individuals include pregnant women, young children, people with chronic illnesses and/or compromised immune systems and the elderly. Because the vaccine can be less effective for people 65 and older, it is especially important for others to get vaccinated to help prevent the spread of flu to individuals in that age group.
For more information about Indiana’s 2012-2013 influenza season, visit the Indiana State Department of Health at www.StateHealth.in.gov
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Multiple Shots Fired in Gary Homicide

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Gary Police and the Lake County Crime Lab are investigating a shooting death overnight that occurred in the area of a corner store in the 700 block of West 45th Avenue in Gary. The Lake County Coroners office says 22-year-old Bryan David Taylor of Gary suffered multiple gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead at the scene at midnight this morning. Gary Police Public Information Corporal Gabrielle King says officers responded to the report of shots fired in the area of 45th and Harrison just before 11pm. "And upon their arrival, they found 22-year-old Bryan D. Taylor lying on the ground, unresponsive and no signs of life.  Mr Taylor was identified at the scene by Detective James Bond who had recognized him from previous encounters with him," Corporal King said. "It's our understanding there were numerous shots that were fired," King said. Anyone who saw anything in the area of 45th and Harrison just minutes before 11 pjm Wednesday night is urged to call either Gary Detective James Bond, who can be reached at 219-881-4751, or Gary Corporal Ed Gonzalez, who can reached at 219-881-4750, as the two are both working this case.  Corporal King says the shooting victim was located outside of the nearby store.
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Police Seek Public's Help in Holdup

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Porter County Sheriffs Police are asking for the public's help as they continue to investigate an armed robbery in South Haven Tuesday night. Officers say shortly after 10-o'clock, the subject entered the Speedway gas station at US 6 and State Road 149 and confronted the clerk as she came out of the back room. Police say the suspect pointed a handgun at the clerk and made her open the register and give him an undisclosed amount of currency.  The suspect is described as a black male, 5'9" with a large build, wearing blue/black pants, black shoes, tan gloves, dark blue nylon winter coat with a green collar and 2 red stripes running horizontally across the center of the back. The suspect also was wearing a black ski mask over his face. Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff's Department Detective Bureau at 219-477-3140. Anonymous tips can be called into WeTip at 1-800-782-7463. WeTip offers up to a $1,000 reward for information aiding in the arrest and conviction of any suspects involved.
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Griffith Graffiti Investigated

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Police in Griffith are investigating what's been described as the largest incident of graffiti the town has seen in recent memory as far as the number of buildings covered in one act. Griffith Police Chief Greg Mance says more than a dozen structures, including garages and fences, in the alleyway along Indiana Street were defaced with blue spray paint.  Chief Mance says the graffiti was found during the morning hours of Tuesday April 16 between the 200 and 400 blocks of Indiana Street in the alleyway. "The graffiti did have some resemblance of gang graffiti, and we are investigating it very vigorously with two officers working directly on that case," the Chief said. Chief Mance also says the town can assist with cleanup. "We take all graffiti, especially anything that might have gang affiliation to it, very seriously," asking that the public report it immediately. "There is a policy in place that the town parks department is able to take that graffiti off with equipment, at no charge to the public, with their permission."   Chief Mance says residents should contact the police department first, at their non-emergency number, 219-924-3141.
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Update: Region Road Closures

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From the INDOT Cams this morning, overhead electronic sign along I65 near 101st Avenue in Lake County, IN, warns of flooding in Illinois
Hammond Police report:
-Northcote Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
-Columbia Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
-In North Hammond US 41/Calumet Avenue is closed at 141st through 129th
INDOT reports:
-Cline Avenue is closed between Riley Road and Calumet Avenue (East Chicago)
Also -- the westbound ramp rom the Borman Expressway to Calumet Avenue was closed earlier (Hammond), and there was concern about the water level at the Kennedy Avenue ramp off the Borman (Hammond)
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Tornado Watch Cancelled for the Region

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A Tornado Watch remains in effect for 39 counties in Indiana, but counties around the Region are no longer included in that watch area. Other weather alerts remain in effect.
http://forecast.weather.gov/hazards/lot
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Tornado Watch, Other Alerts in Effect

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Multiple watches and warnings are in effect for the Region today related to the heavy rains moving across Northwest Indiana and the Midwest. 
A Tornado Watch for our entire listening area has been posted til 4 pm CDT. A Flash Flood Warning that includes Lake County and southwestern Porter County is in effect until 2 pm CDT. There's also a Wind Advisory from this morning through tonight.  A Flood Watch continues for Northwest Indiana.  A Flood Warning for the Little Calumet River at Munster is in effect where observed flooding has changed from minor to moderate severity. A Flood Warning is also in effect for the Kankakee River at Shelby, affecting Lake and Newton Counties.
For updates from the National Weather Service: 
http://forecast.weather.gov/hazards/lot
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Road Closures in Hammond

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Heavy rains have led to road closures in parts of Hammond. Kennedy Avenue is still passable.  Hammond Police Lt. Pat Vicari gave us an update::
-Northcote Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
-Columbia Ave bridge from Hammond to Munster closed
-In North Hammond US 41/Calumet Avenue is closed at 141st through 129th
Heavy rains have caused major flooding in and around Chicago. ABC reports cars are underwater... "I have an underground parking garage and the water in the parking garage is up to the tires, " was one description. And expressways are underwater making it difficult to get to work... "Probably about eight inches of water just submerging the roads."
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Severe Thunderstorm Warning Issued

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Click here for updates:
http://forecast.weather.gov/hazards/lot
BULLETIN - IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHICAGO/ROMEOVILLE IL 809 AM CDT THU APR 18 2013 THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN CHICAGO HAS ISSUED A * SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR... IROQUOIS COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL ILLINOIS... SOUTHEASTERN KANKAKEE COUNTY IN NORTHEAST ILLINOIS... BENTON COUNTY IN NORTHWEST INDIANA... JASPER COUNTY IN NORTHWEST INDIANA... SOUTHERN LAKE COUNTY IN NORTHWEST INDIANA... NEWTON COUNTY IN NORTHWEST INDIANA... SOUTHERN PORTER COUNTY IN NORTHWEST INDIANA... * UNTIL 945 AM CDT * AT 806 AM CDT...A LINE OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WAS LOCATED ALONG A LINE EXTENDING FROM CHEBANSE TO RANKIN...AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 40 MPH. HAZARD...70 MPH WIND GUSTS. SOURCE...RADAR INDICATED. IMPACT...EXPECT CONSIDERABLE TREE DAMAGE. DAMAGE IS POSSIBLE TO MOBILE HOMES...ROOFS AND OUTBUILDINGS. * SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE NEAR... AROMA PARK AND CLAYTONVILLE AROUND 815 AM CDT. ST. ANNE AROUND 820 AM CDT. WATSEKA AND MILFORD AROUND 825 AM CDT. MOMENCE AND HOPKINS PARK AROUND 830 AM CDT. STOCKLAND AND SHELDON AROUND 835 AM CDT. TALBOT AROUND 940 AM EDT. OTHER LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING INCLUDE MARTINTON...SUN RIVER TERRACE...WOODLAND...PAPINEAU...WELLINGTON...DONOVAN...BEAVERVILLE... IROQUOIS...AMBIA AND SCHNEIDER. OTHER LOCATIONS AFFECTED... KANKAKEE COMMUNITY COLLEGE...KANKAKEE COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS... SPEEDWAY...US 41 DRAGWAY... PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... FOR YOUR PROTECTION MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A BUILDING....

Read more: Severe Thunderstorm Warning Issued

   

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