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Gillespie Police Report: August 21-27, 2022

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SUNDAY, AUGUST 21, 2022

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Lake in reference to theft and criminal damage to state-supported property.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Baker Street and Staunton Road. Angela G. Martin, 44, of Mt. Olive was issued citations for operating an uninsured motor vehicle and improper use of registration.

An officer spoke with a female at Gillespie Police Department in reference to a violation of an order of protection.

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 200 block of Southern Street in reference to a theft.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Route 4 and Central Avenue in Benld. Brandon N. Blevins, 27, of Gillespie was issued a citation for speeding.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of North 4th Street in Benld in reference to a domestic dispute.

MONDAY, AUGUST 22, 2022

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An officer was dispatched to the 600 block of North 5th Street in Benld in reference to a criminal defacement of property.

An officer was dispatched to the 800 block of Adams Street in reference to a theft.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a female in reference to child custody issues.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of East Chestnut Street in reference to illegal burning.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a female in reference to a civil issue.

An officer spoke with a female at Gillespie Police Department in reference to a stalking complaint.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of West Oak Street in reference to harassment by social media.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of LJ Avenue in reference to a theft.

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An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of East Oak Street in reference to a civil issue.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of 2nd Street in Benld in reference to a dog bite.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of 7th Street in Benld in reference to a suspicious vehicle.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a female in reference to harassment by telephone.

A report of reckless driving in the school zone was reported to the School Resource Officer.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police officer to speak with a female in reference to a civil issue

TUESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2022

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 100 block of West Chestnut Street in reference to a theft.

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An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to identity theft.

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of First Street in reference to a dog at large.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of East Maple Street in reference to a domestic battery. Anel Berisa, 25, of Gillespie was arrested for domestic battery.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of Biddle Street in reference to a civil standby.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to a nuisance property.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department who requested extra patrol at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery.

An officer was out with a female in Pomatto Park sleeping.

An officer spoke with a female at Gillespie Police Department in reference to suspicious messages they were receiving.

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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24, 2022

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to harassment.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of North 5th Street in Benld in reference to a death investigation.

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 300 block of North Macoupin Street in reference to an assault.

An officer during normal patrol located a stolen vehicle out of Madison County in the 400 block of Springfield Road in East Gillespie.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of LJ Avenue in reference to criminal damage to property.

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 300 block of North Macoupin Street in reference to an alarm sounding.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of Park Street in Benld in reference to the removal of a subject.

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An officer was dispatched to a business in the 100 block of East Maple Street in reference to an open door.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of West Chestnut Street in reference to dogs at large

An officer was dispatched to Dorsey Road in Mt. Clare in reference to a loud vehicle racing down the roadway.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Elm Street and Oregon Street. Kaitlin D. Fearn, 22, of Alton was issued a citation for speeding.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Elm Street and Western Street. John A. Lane, 42, of Jerseyville was issued a citation for operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of West Oak Street in reference to a juvenile issue.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 25, 2022

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to take a report of an assault that took place at Gillespie Middle School.

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An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of East Pine Street in reference to harassment.

An officer was dispatched to Ben-Gil Elementary School to assist with a child custody issue.

An officer was dispatched to Madison Street and Pine Street in reference to two juveniles fighting on a school bus.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of East Elm Street in reference to a missing person. A report came in later that the male had later been located.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of East Maple Street in reference to a suspicious vehicle.

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 400 block of South Macoupin Street in reference to an animal call.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to a civil issue.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of Lincoln Avenue in Eagarville in reference to a report of battery.

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FRIDAY, AUGUST 26, 2022

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a male in reference to a child custody issue.

An officer stopped a female on a bicycle at LJ Avenue and Broadway with no lights after dark.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of West Spruce in reference to a suspicious person.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of South Macoupin Street in reference to an animal complaint.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Bike Trail in reference to suspicious circumstances.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to juvenile issues.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of West Central Avenue in reference to an unauthorized motor vehicle on the roadway.

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An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to suspicious activity in the 400 block of North 5th Street in Benld.

School Resource Officer was out in the 700 block of East Walnut Street doing a home visit for the school.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of Park Avenue in reference to a disturbance.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 27, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of East Locust Street in Benld in reference to domestic trouble.

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of East Walnut Street in reference to a theft.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of West Spruce Street in reference to a theft.

An officer was dispatched to the 800 block of Madison Street to recover an item.

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An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Lake on Carney Drive in reference to criminal damage to property.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to a civil issue.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Springfield Road and Virginia Street in East Gillespie.  Tucker L. Clinton, 27, of Carlinville was issued a citation for speeding.

An officer was dispatched to the 600 block of Edwards Street in reference to a suspicious person.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Staunton Road and Heritage Health.  Theodore H. Hopper, 50, of Gillespie was issued a citation for expired registration and operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Park Avenue in reference to a suspicious person.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Clark Street and Staunton Road. Sean H. Mason, 53, of Benld was issued a citation for operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of East Chestnut Street in reference to a suspicious person.

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An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of East Locust Street in Benld in reference to domestic trouble.

All subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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School board deals with personnel issues during special meeting

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By

Stephanie Bray

Meeting in special session Monday night, members of the Community Unit School District 7 Board of Education accepted “with regrets” the resignation for purposes of retirement of Stephanie Bray, one of the district’s three technology integration specialists, effective June 4.

The board called a special session to deal with the apparently unexpected resignation before the board’s regularly scheduled monthly meeting later this month. However, board members tabled action on approving a revised job description for the Student Information System/Data Integration Specialist position, pending further discussion.

The board also tabled action on posting the newly created vacancy and tabled posting a district-level secretary’s position.

In February of 2022, the board accepted “with regrets” Bray’s announcement of her retirement “no later than the end of the 2025-26 school year.” There was no indication of why Bray moved her retirement date up by two years.

On a motion by Weye Schmidt, seconded by Amanda Ross, the board voted unanimously to accept Bray’s resignation. The action followed a 50-minute executive session to discuss personnel issues behind closed doors. The public portion of the meeting lasted less than 10 minutes.

In other action, the board voted to renew the district’s One Room contract to offer a remotely taught Spanish class to fulfill the district’s foreign language requirement for the 2024-25 school year. This will be the second year an off-site teacher will teach foreign language at GHS, using remote communication technology. Supt. Shane Owsley said the district had no applications for the vacant teaching position last year. This year, an applicant from Brazil explored the possibility of teaching in Gillespie but ultimately accepted a tutoring position at Greenville University. Owsley said hiring the applicant could have become cumbersome because she was not yet certificated to teach high school Spanish. He said he recently changed the job description from Spanish to foreign language to expand the pool of potential applicants.

In other personnel action, the board approved the maternity leave request of Amber Allan, BenGil Elementary physical education teacher, effective Aug. 28 through Jan. 20.

In separate actions, the board accepted Nathan Henrichs resignation as Gillespie High School freshman football coach, posted the position as vacant, and appointed Henrichs as a varsity assistant football coach. The board also voted unanimously to appoint Alex Jasper as an assistant freshman football coach. The board unanimously accepted Wayne Ireland’s resignation as a volunteer assistant football coach, and voted unanimously to appoint Jarrod Herron and hire Trenton Cleveland as volunteer assistant football coaches.

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The board voted unanimously to hire Michael Rodriguez as a high school volunteer assistant women’s basketball coach.

On a motion by Schmidt, seconded by Kelli Vesper, the board hired Alexis Ollis as a head cook and kitchen staff member, pending documentation of certification and a background check. The board also Brittany Hughes as a district kitchen staff worker, pending documentation of certification and background check.

On a motion by Vesper, the board voted unanimously to post a vacancy for a one-on-one paraprofessional aide.

Board members voted unanimously to accept the resignation of Jessica Kelly as a middle school assistant track and field coach and voted unanimously to hire Jay Weber as the high school head track and field coach.

The regular monthly meeting of the board is set for 6 p.m., Monday, June 24, at the district’s administrative office.

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Americana festival set for July 4 at Benld Park

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Jess Barker, The Lodge Brothers, and The New Prairie Drifters are set to take the stage at Benld City Park on Thursday, July 4 as part of the Americana Festival.

The music festival intends to celebrate the birthday and spirit of America with thriving local culture of music, food, and art. It is scheduled to begin at 12 noon and end at 6 pm.

Food will be available for purchase from The Barracks American Table, a new Gillespie restaurant, and skincare products will be available from Nature’s Bliss, a Benld gift shop.

The park is located at 305 North Main Street in Benld. Admission is free.

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Macoupin County Fair underway until Sunday

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Rides, tents, food trucks, music, animals, and plenty of other offerings fill the grounds at the Macoupin County Fair for the 172nd year. The fair is held June 4 through June 9 at the Macoupin County Fairground north of Carlinville.

The oldest county fair in Illinois, the Macoupin County Fair welcomes thousands of guests to the area and unites agriculture, family, and community. The fair continues through Sunday with highlights every evening.

The fair also meets the needs of families on a budget, for just $10 per person you get parking and all-access to the carnival rides. The cost-friendly fun draws in visitors and locals who get to embrace the county’s namesakes.

Tracy Lawrence and Walker Montgomery are set to take the stage Thursday evening, June 6, at 7:30pm. Friday evening features the tractor and truck pull, and Saturday evening is the crowd-favorite demolition derby.

The fair opens every morning at 8am and closes at 12 midnight. For a full list of schedule of events or to pre-pay for entry, visit the fair’s website here.

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