Illinois news

2014-05-04T18:57:00Z 2014-05-04T20:05:14Z Illinois news nwitimes.com
May 04, 2014 6:57 pm

Bill aimed at ending Illinois 'puppy mill' sales

SPRINGFIELD — Lawmakers are considering a bill that would make Illinois the first state in the nation to require pet shops to only sell dogs and cats that they've acquired from animal shelters and not from commercial breeders.

It's aimed at putting so-called puppy mills out of business by ending their ability to sell animals to pet shops, which often fail to disclose the origins of their animals. Puppy mills are facilities that typically turn out large numbers of animals under inhumane conditions.

The legislation introduced this past week would still allow people to buy directly from responsible breeders.

Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski of Park Ridge is sponsoring the bill. He says it'll ensure "safer and more humane treatment of pets."

Charges filed in crash that killed law student

CHICAGO | A Chicago man is being held on $750,000 bond after being charged with a traffic accident that killed a University of Chicago Law School student.

Chicago Police say 23-year-old Erik Johnson is charged with reckless homicide and drunken driving charges after authorities say he drove his SUV the wrong way on Chicago's Lake Shore Drive, slamming into a taxi.

His lawyer said Johnson works in Elk Grove Village, while Johnson's father said the crash was a "tragic incident."

Friday's crash killed 26-year-old Laura Anne LaPlante from Hancock, New Hampshire. LaPlante was on track to graduate this summer.

Another passenger in the cab, as well as the driver, were also injured.

Rockford police investigate city's 7th homicide

ROCKFORD | Rockford authorities are investigating the homicide death of a 24-year-old woman whose body was found in her home this weekend.

The Winnebago County coroner's office says Savanna Johnson's body had "possible gunshot and knife wounds."

The Rockford Register Star reports her death is the seventh homicide so far this year in the northern Illinois city.

Johnson's body was found Saturday around 3 a.m. Her children, who were home at the time of her death, weren't harmed.

A 26-year-old man who lived in the home is facing attempted first-degree murder charges, which are expected to be upgraded.

He was arrested after a six-hour standoff.

Confiscated shark fin donated to Chicago museum

CHICAGO | A shark fin confiscated as part of an Illinois Conservation Police investigation has been donated to The Field Museum in Chicago.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources says an officer donated the shark fin and other related products last week. Illinois in 2012 became the first non-Pacific state to enact a shark fin ban.

Late last year Illinois conservation police say they bought shark fin items from six different Chicago businesses. The purchases included shark fin soup and frozen shark fin, among other items.

The businesses were cited after DNA analysis conducted at the Field Museum confirmed the products contained shark.

Facebook's Sandberg speaks to City College grads

CHICAGO | Facebook's chief operating officer reminded Chicago students to believe in themselves Saturday as she addressed the City Colleges' graduating class of 2014.

Sheryl Sandberg is author of bestselling book "Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead." Prior to giving the commencement address, City College officials say Sandberg met with school valedictorians Saturday to learn how they have overcome personal challenges.

The city's seven-college system serves 115,000 students across Chicago. Officials say the system expects to give the highest number of degrees in its history for the second consecutive year.

Sandberg told graduates their life's course will not be determined by the things they are certain they can do but "whether you try the things that are hard."

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