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Tweets and threats: Gangs find new home on the Net

CHICAGO | The video is riddled with menace and swagger: Reputed gang members in Chicago point their guns directly at the camera. A bare-chested young man brandishes an assault weapon. They flash hand signals, dance and, led by a rapper, taunt their rivals as he chants:

January 11, 2014 9:17 pm

Will probe bring justice in town's rape scandal?

ROBBINS, Ill. | The rape evidence was stored in the police department's musty basement: Brown paper shopping bags, stuffed with sneakers, bras and underpants, jammed on metal shelves. Scattered blood vials and swabs covered with dust and mold — an inventory amassed over more than 25 years.

November 24, 2013 12:00 am
Home for Holocaust survivors sees last generation

Home for Holocaust survivors sees last generation

CHICAGO | Listen to the many harrowing stories of war, suffering and survival, all under one roof:

November 03, 2013 12:00 am Photos


Hip-hop version of 'Othello' resonates behind bars

CHICAGO | Act I, Scene 1: Four actors in well-worn coveralls and baseball caps take the stage at the county jail. They're here to tell a tale of love, friendship, jealousy and betrayal. It's the stuff of Shakespearean tragedy. The names and themes haven't changed over the centuries, but the …

August 31, 2013 8:40 pm

Will fast-food protests spur higher minimum wage?

Terrance Wise has two jobs in Kansas City — one at a burger joint, the second at a pizza restaurant — but he says his paychecks aren't enough to buy shoes for his three daughters and insure his 15-year-old car. So he decided to draw attention to his plight: He walked off work in protest.

August 05, 2013 2:27 pm
Violence, gangs scar Chicago community in 2012

Violence, gangs scar Chicago community in 2012

CHICAGO | It was February, the middle of lunch hour on a busy South Side street. The gunman approached his victim in a White Castle parking lot, shot him in the head, then fled down an alley.

December 30, 2012 12:00 am Photos


From vets to moms, Iraq war leaves mark on Indiana town

From vets to moms, Iraq war leaves mark on Indiana town

KOKOMO | In a quiet park on the eastern edge of this auto manufacturing town, a gleaming ring of black granite walls and monuments stands in solemn tribute to the war dead. Hundreds of names are etched in stone, many of them long forgotten to history.

December 23, 2011 12:00 pm Photos


Postcards from Cabrini

Postcards from Cabrini

CHICAGO | Every day at sundown, the gutted shell of the last Cabrini Green public housing tower takes on a ghostly aura as lights start flickering sporadically from 15 floors of empty rooms.

April 30, 2011 12:00 am Photos


100 % of school's first class college-bound

100 % of school's first class college-bound

CHICAGO | For each boy, the new school offered an escape and a chance at a life that seemed beyond reach.

June 28, 2010 12:00 am Photos


Blagojevich facing the fight of his life

Blagojevich facing the fight of his life

CHICAGO | The day before Rod Blagojevich's world came crashing down, he stood before the TV cameras confident and defiant, as always, declaring he had nothing to hide, even as a giant political scandal was about to engulf him.

May 31, 2010 12:05 am Photos


Will the Volt recharge GM and US auto industry?

WARREN, Mich. | He stands all day, bent over noisy machines, cutting giant sheets of steel and feeding them into monster-sized presses so powerful the concrete floor rumbles beneath his size-16 feet.

May 23, 2010 12:00 am

The War Within

It wasn't his first tour in Iraq, but his second and third when Joe Callan began wondering how long his luck would last -- how many more months he could swerve around bombs buried in the dirt and duck mortars raining from the skies.

April 11, 2010 12:00 am

Second City at 50 is still cranking out laughs

On a blustery fall afternoon, Andy St. Clair slips into an empty club, with rows of tables, wooden chairs and a bare stage awaiting its next bit of comedy magic.

December 11, 2009 12:00 am

Terror victims seeking Persian relics in court

CHICAGO | The professor opens a cardboard box and gingerly picks up a few hunks of dried clay -- dust-baked relics that offer a glimpse into the long-lost world of the Persian empire that spanned a continent 2,500 years ago.

February 22, 2009 12:00 am

Obama avoids stain of Chicago's political scandals

CHICAGO | On the campaign trail, Barack Obama liked to boast that he was a tough survivor of the bare-knuckled world of Chicago politics.

December 11, 2008 12:00 am

Town shows economic woes weighing on election

WAKARUSA, Ind. | In this corner of America known as the RV capital of the world, Todd Brink once made a good living producing the gleaming behemoths that cruised the nation's open roads. He was prospering. So, too, was the industry.

September 28, 2008 12:00 am

Changing face of politics

Ray Ballentine was waiting for a sign to throw his support to Barack Obama. And when Obama coasted to victory in Iowa's caucuses, there it was -- evidence that the senator had the broad racial appeal to get to the White House.

January 06, 2008 12:00 am

Mom hopes son will be freed someday

Every month or so, Missy Phillips makes a four-hour drive to visit her son in prison, refusing to accept that his fate has been sealed -- and he will die behind bars.

December 09, 2007 12:00 am

The trail of a buttery flavor

Each morning, Eric Peoples sits up in bed and starts his day with a cough. A deep, long, hacking cough.

October 28, 2007 12:00 am

Duckworth alive and kicking

Tammy Duckworth's last thoughts when a rocket-propelled grenade tore into the cockpit of her Black Hawk helicopter were 1. stay awake, and 2. fight like hell to get the crew on the ground.

December 05, 2006 12:00 am

So young, huge accusations<br />

CHICAGO | Even now, the mug shots are jarring.

November 06, 2005 12:00 am

Obama's year

PEKIN | The line forms the moment Sen. Barack Obama is done speaking, a procession of admirers clutching copies of his book, magazines, scraps of paper, disposable cameras and one homemade American flag.

July 24, 2005 12:00 am

'I look a little more like a human being'

He still is a mound of a man, but his blue eyes widen with delight as he presses his chest with his fingertips, smiles mischievously and makes the grand announcement: He can FEEL his ribs.

June 27, 2005 12:00 am

'Freakonomics' in Chicago

CHICAGO | Steve Levitt's world is economics, but he has no patience for inflation charts or stock market tables. He'd much prefer to plunge into a scholarly study of ... cheating sumo wrestlers.

May 06, 2005 12:00 am

Chicago's mayoral dynasty began half a century ago

CHICAGO | It sounds like a family business: The son, who shares his father's name, sits at his father's desk in the same office his father once occupied -- on the fifth floor of City Hall.

April 18, 2005 12:00 am

Suspect in judge murder case held grudge against government

CHICAGO (AP) -- He'd come to court and sit quietly in the front row, an angry man with a disfigured face, a tormented mind -- and an all-consuming grudge against the doctors he claimed had botched his cancer treatment and ruined his life.

March 11, 2005 12:00 am

Descendant of Indian chiefs who loved the Army

To his friends in the Army, he was known as Sheldon Hawk Eagle.

September 08, 2004 12:00 am

A 51-year-old Guardsman who could never say no

When Frank Carvill told his sister he had been called up to go to Iraq, she was stunned.

September 08, 2004 12:00 am

Female helicopter pilot was 'living my dreams'

When Kimberly Hampton headed off to war the first time, she sent her mother an e-mail, joking about the hazards of flying a small helicopter. But she had a serious message, too.

September 08, 2004 12:00 am

Gacy's brain and beyond

CHICAGO (AP) -- The television cast an eerie glow in the dingy motel room, but the doctor wasn't watching. She was waiting impatiently for an important call -- one that would tell her the killer was dead.

May 08, 2004 12:00 am

Big dollars shape political game

Money is the lifeblood of politics, and increasingly, it defines and dominates campaigns.

April 25, 2004 12:00 am

A Valentine's Day journey

MAYWOOD, Ill. -- The young couple sat in the small room, waiting for a click on the computer that would transform their lives.

February 14, 2004 12:00 am

Agents crack international drug ring that used infants and formula as cover

CHICAGO -- He knocked on the door of the squalid basement apartment, looking for a young couple. Their baby girl had been stopped at an airport thousands of miles away, and it wasn't her first suspicious trip.

January 25, 2004 12:00 am

Good cop-bad cop

CHICAGO -- The jewelry salesman was ready for the thieves this time. He set out on a trip with $58,000 in luxury watches in the trunk of his Lincoln. He wanted to be followed.

April 21, 2002 12:00 am
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