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Gillespie Police Report: July 31-August 6, 2022

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SUNDAY, JULY 31, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Dorsey Street in Benld in reference to criminal damage to property.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of Gillespie Street in reference to a suspicious person.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of Madison Street in reference to a civil issue.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of East Central Avenue in Benld in reference to an alarm sounding.

  MONDAY, AUGUST 1, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 600 block of Harding Avenue in East Gillespie in reference to a wellbeing check.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Oak Street and South Hard Road in Benld. Tanya J. Walsh, 44, of Staunton was issued a citation for speeding.

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An officer initiated a traffic stop at 2nd Street and Dorsey Road in Mt. Clare.  Kevin W. Morrow, 28, of Jerseyville was issued a citation for speeding.

An officer spoke with a female at Gillespie Police Department in reference to illegal dissemination of harmful material in the 700 block of North 7th Street in Benld.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of North Hard Road in Mt Clare in reference to criminal trespass to a residence.

Robert M. Keffer, 35, of Gillespie was arrested on two warrants, a Macoupin County warrant for failure to appear for burglary and an Edwardsville warrant for failure to appear for traffic.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of Park Avenue in reference to criminal damage to property.

TUESDAY, AUGUST 2, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Dorsey Road in Mt. Clare in reference to a domestic dispute.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of North Illinois Street in Benld in reference to a domestic dispute.

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An officer was dispatched to 1st Street and Dorsey Street in Benld in reference to a wellbeing check on a dog.

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of North 5th Street in Benld in reference to trespassing.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of South 6th Street in Benld in reference to criminal damage to property.

An officer was dispatched to Macoupin Street and Pine Street in reference to a parole violation issue.

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of North 7th Street in Benld in reference to a noise complaint.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of Park Avenue in reference to a juvenile issue.

An officer spoke with a female at Gillespie Police Department in reference to criminal trespass to property.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of South Macoupin Street in reference to juveniles fighting.

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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 3, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 700 block of North 5th Street in Benld in reference to a burglary. Jennifer L. Pickett, 40, of Gillespie was arrested for burglary and issued a citation for disobeying a stop sign. Anel Berisa, 25, of Gillespie was arrested for burglary.

An officer was dispatched to a business in the 300 block of North Macoupin Street in reference to retail theft and criminal trespass.

An officer spoke with a female at the Gillespie Police Department in reference to a violation of a no-contact order.

An officer was dispatched to Big Brick Park in reference to a suspicious person.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of Park Avenue in reference to a civil standby.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of South 4th Street in Benld in reference to a wellbeing check on a dog.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of East Maple Street in reference to a wellbeing check.

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An officer was dispatched to a business in the 700 block of Broadway Street in reference to an alarm sounding.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 4, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of West Walnut Street in reference to a suicidal subject.

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

Jason R. Ferratto, 32, Of Benld was arrested on a Macoupin County warrant for failure to appear on possession of methamphetamine.

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of North Macoupin Street in reference to a suspicious person.

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

An officer was dispatched to the Gillespie Bike Trail in reference to juveniles on electric scooters.

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An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of East Walnut Street in reference to juveniles in the creek.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Henry Street in reference to a wellbeing check.

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of South Macoupin Street in reference to a suspicious vehicle.

FRIDAY, AUGUST 5, 2022

An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of North Illinois Street in Benld in reference to civil standby.

An officer was dispatched to the 100 block of East Maple in reference to a wellbeing check.

An officer spoke with a male at Gillespie Police Department in reference to an aggravated assault in the 300 block of Shelby Street.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Oak Street and South Hard Road in Benld. Amy L. Carter, 37, of Gillespie was issued citations for speeding, operating an uninsured motor vehicle, suspended registration, and expired trailer registration.

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An officer responded to a report of a suspicious driver at Central Street and Hard Road in Benld.

An officer was dispatched to the 500 block of West Burton Street in reference to a noise complaint.

An officer initiated a traffic stop at Oak Street and Macoupin Street.  Karen L. Rauzi, 59, of Gillespie was issued a citation for disobeying a stop sign.

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

SATURDAY, AUGUST 6, 2022

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a female in reference to theft from a motor vehicle in the 500 block of West Baker Street.

An officer was dispatched to the 900 block of First Street in reference to a domestic dispute.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of South Hard Road in reference to residential burglary.

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An officer was dispatched to the 200 block of South 5th Street in reference to criminal trespass.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Dorsey Road in Mt. Clare in reference to a domestic dispute.

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

An officer was dispatched to the 400 block of Diana Drive in reference to computer fraud.

An officer was dispatched to Kentucky Street and Park Street in Benld in reference to juveniles on the roadway with ATV’s.

An officer was dispatched to Gillespie Police Department to speak with a female that had just been involved in a domestic battery in the 1000 block of Madison Street.  Joshua L. Lyons, 32, of Benld was arrested for domestic battery.

An officer was dispatched to the 300 block of South Hard Road in Benld in reference to a burglary.

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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