Today's News

Starke County Environmental Management District Collection Event Planned for June

The Starke County Environmental Management District will hold its two-day collection event in June.

The purpose of this event is to help residents get rid of unwanted and recyclable material from their households.

On Friday, June 13 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. CT, Starke County residents may discard tires, appliances, computers and televisions. Five tires will be accepted for free. One of those tires may be a farm-type tire.

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Knox City Council Tables Mutual Aid Agreement

 The Knox City Council tabled a discussion on a mutual aid agreement between the city and the Bass Lake Fire Department.

Knox-Center Township Fire Chief Kenny Pfost told the council members that he doesn’t approve of the agreement presented and will talk with Bass Lake Fire Chief Les Jensen about an agreement that would be acceptable between both parties.

Chief Pfost stated that the departments are operating under a mutual aid agreement provided by the state, but he would like to see it tailored to fit the needs of both departments.

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IU Health Starke Hospital Associates Plan Day of Service

IU Health Starke Hospital associates will be getting out of the medical setting tomorrow to spruce up the community. President Craig Felty says all hospitals in the IU Health system take part in a community day of service. This year the local staff is installing fitness equipment and painting the pavilion at Sandy Acres Park on South Heaton Street in Knox. ”

“We want to be good neighbors. We want to engage the community, and we want to do what is best in order to help achieve our mission, which is to improve the health of our patients and our communities we are in,” Felty says.

Last year IU Health Starke Hospital associates did work at Wythogen Park in downtown Knox. Felty encourages community members to stop by and visit the IU Health Starke Hospital administrators and staff members at the park tomorrow.

Tobacco Cessation Classes Offered at Fitness Forum Sports and Wellness

Smokers who would like some hands-on help to kick the habit can sign up for classes offered at Fitness Forum Sports and Wellness at LifePlex in Plymouth. American Lung Association Certified Freedom From Smoking Instructor Cindy Riester will lead the seven-week program. Classes start Monday, June 2. Riester will offer resources to quit, skills to manage weight and stress and group support during the eight classes. They meet Mondays through July 14 from 6 until 7:30 p.m. EDT and on Wednesday, June 18. That’s the scheduled quit day. Participants must register by May 30. The program is partially grant funded by the Marshall County local coordinating council and Governor’s Commission for a Drug-Free Indiana. The out-of-pocket cost for participants is $40 and includes a bonus two-month membership to Fitness Forum Sports and Wellness for those who successfully complete the course. Call Riester at 574-936-2333 to register.

Knox Fireworks Committee to Hold Fundraiser for County Event

 The Knox fireworks committee will hold a fundraiser on June 21 to help gather funds for this year’s extravaganza.

The Saturday, July 5 celebration event will be at the Starke County Airport. The gates will open around 6 p.m. CT with the fireworks show at dusk. Several vendors will be available so you can go early and get a snack and listen to some music before the show begins.

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Starke County Youth Club Receives Operation Round Up Grant

Starke County Youth Club Executive Director Irene Szakonyi and Amanda Steeb from Kanakee Valley REMC

Starke County Youth Club Executive Director Irene Szakonyi and Amanda Steeb from Kanakee Valley REMC

The Starke County Youth Club is benefiting from Kankakee Valley REMC members who choose to round their monthly bills up to the nearest dollar. The organization received a $3,000 Operation Round Up grant from the electrical cooperative. SCYC Executive Director Irene Szakonyi says the money will provide supplies for the many science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) projects the club offers at sites across Starke County. She says the activities the club offers in an after-school setting help youngsters develop critical thinking, collaboration and problem-solving skills and build confidence. Visit www.thescyc.org for more information. Kankakee Valley REMC is a member-owned rural electric cooperative serving approximately 18,000 members throughout portions of Starke, Pulaski, Porter, Lake, Marshall, St. Joseph and LaPorte Counties. Members who take part in Operation Round Up donate an average of $6 per year, which is then distributed to local nonprofit organizations throughout the service territory.

 

Mint Festival Father/Grandfather of the Year Deadline Nears

The deadline to enter the annual North Judson Mint Festival Father & Grandfather of the Year contest is fast approaching. Entries are due Saturday, May 31. Any child from the North Judson – San Pierre School District can nominate their father or grandfather. The essay must be in a child’s handwriting and include the name of their father or grandfathers as well as their name, an address and phone number. All local NJ-SP children are encouraged to get involved. Proposals can be sent to Father/Grandfather of the Year, Mint Festival, P.O. Box 33, North Judson, IN 46366.

Job Fair and Butterfly Garden Planned at Library

Henry F. Schricker Library

Henry F. Schricker Library

The Henry F. Shricker Public Library in Knox is offering programs for everyone this weekend. Elwood Staffing is sponsoring a job fair tomorrow from 10 a.m until 2 p.m. This program is open to all local adults and will take place in the meeting room of the library.

On Saturday, local man Jack O’Malley will be hosting a program and planting flowers that attract monarch butterflies. This opportunity is aimed at young adults but open to everyone. This special gardening event happening at 10 a.m Saturday, but it will run all weekend. This is the first of several summer programs in the butterfly garden at the library. For more information regarding library programs you can contact Andrea Brown at abrown@starkecountylibrary.org or call her at 574-772-7323.

What are the Drivers Saying?

This week, NASCAR heads to Delaware to get around the challenging track they call the “Monster Mile”.  Editor’s note: This is my favorite track because of the challenge of the surface and endless strategy it provides a race team.  Plus, it has character – a real one in Miles the Monster.

What are the drivers saying about my favorite track – Dover International International Speedway?  Look and see what your favorite driver is saying. Continue reading

Police Reports

Police reports and arrests are merely an allegation that a crime has been committed and are in no way an indication of an individual’s guilt or innocence.

Starke County Sheriff’s Department

Sheriff Oscar Cowen

Sheriff Oscar Cowen

Incidents
5/12/14 – An anonymous caller reported a truck pulled behind a residence that recently burned in the 4000 block of East 175 North in Knox, loaded two couches into the back of a pickup truck and left heading toward Knox.
5/12/14 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Hamlet Fire Department, Hamlet and Koontz Lake Fire Departments and Starke County EMS responded to a report of a vehicle fire on U.S. 30 at State Road 23.
5/12/14 – A North Judson resident asked to file a harassment report.
5/12/14 – A resident in the 5400 block of South 210 in Knox reported juveniles messing around on her boat and pier.
5/13/14 – A deputy from the Starke County Sheriff’s Office responded to a property damage accident at Knoll Brothers in Hamlet. Marvin Earl McDaniel, 30, of Knox, bumped a fuel pump with his semi, and the clerk requested a report.
5/14/14 – Multiple departments and Starke County EMS responded to a personal injury accident at the intersection of 700 East and 200 South. Brandon Ray Owens, 29, of North Judson, was thrown from his vehicle and laying in a field.
5/14/14 – A Starke County Sheriff’s Deputy responded to a property damage accident on State Road 10 west of 250 west in North Judson.
5/14/14 – Multiple agencies responded to a report of a tractor-trailer on its side in a ditch on 300 East south of State Road 8. The driver was not injured.
5/14/14 – A sheriff’s deputy responded to a drug complaint at the Good to Go station on State Road 23 in Koontz Lake.
5/14/14 – A resident in the 5700 block of North State Road 23 in Grovertown reported items have been stolen from her farm during the day.
5/14/14 – A resident in the 3200 block of East 400 South in Knox reported a tall, thin, Hispanic man showed up in a red SUV, parked by their barn and tried to get into their house, but his wife scared him away.
5/14/14 – A resident in the 10000 block of East 700 North in Walkerton asked a deputy to check a nearby house for suspicious activity.
5/15/14 – A resident in the 6600 block of East Old U.S. 30 in Hamlet asked a deputy to check his back shed for a trespasser or other suspicious activity.
5/15/14 – A resident in the 3200 block of South Range Road in Knox reported the theft of items from her son’s gravesite at Fletcher Cemetery.
5/15/14 – A resident in the 6300 block of East 125 South in Knox found an abandoned Jeep stuck in a ditch on his property with nobody around and asked for a deputy to come check it out.
5/15/14 – A resident in the 3000 block of East 200 South in Knox asked to speak to an officer about loose dogs in her yard. She has small children and is concerned.
5/15/14 – Officers responded to a report of a suspicious truck at the Starke County Highway Garage.
5/15/14 – Michael David McCormack, 25, of Knox, hit a deer in the 1900 block of South State Road 23 in Knox.
5/15/14 – Leroy D. Gudeman, 87, of Knox, hit a deer on State Road 10 at 100 West in North Judson.
5/16/14 – Deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle and possible property damage in the 4200 block of south 700 East in Knox.
5/16/14 – A resident in the 6900 block of East Homette Avenue in Knox reported loose dogs in the area that are getting into his trash and trying to attack him.
5/16/14 – A resident in the 7300 block of South 200 West in North Judson filed a report of identity theft.
5/16/14 – Officers took a report of a car versus deer crash on westbound U.S. 30 east of 600 East in Hamlet.
5/16/14 – A resident in the 6800 block of East 400 North in Knox reports his neighbor’s two dogs keep coming on to his property, even though he has previously spoken to the neighbors about the issue.
5/16/14 – A resident in the 400 block of Brazill Street in San Pierre reported she and her husband are both getting harassing telephone calls.
5/17/14 – A resident in the 4500 block of North 600 East in Hamlet asked a sheriff’s deputy to take a report of an unwanted man who came to his house.
5/17/14 – A resident in the 9600 block of East 700 North in Walkerton reported the theft of a trail camera from her property.
5/18/14 – A resident in the 7000 block of South 100 West in North Judson reported money missing from a money box at her residence.
5/18/14 – Officers responded to a property damaged accident in the 3100 block of South County Road 210 in Knox.
5/18/14 – Gregory Trusty, 49, of North Judson, hit a deer on 400 South near 700 West.
5/18/14 – Multiple agencies responded to a motorcycle versus deer crash on State Road 10 east of Bass Lake Pub and Ristorante. A male and female were both injured.
5/18/14 – Rebekah Anne Fagan, 21, of Lakeville, hit a deer in the 7900 block of North Frost Street in Koontz Lake.
5/19/14 – Terry W. Adkins, 65, reported the theft of 175 gallons of fuel from his semi at Grovertown Truck Stop during the night.
5/19/14 – Ronald M. Fairchild, 42, of Knox, was cited for driving 72/55 on U.S. 35 at 250 North.5/19/14 – A resident in the 6600 block of East Old U.S. 30 in Hamlet reported two men on her property looking in her windows. She thought they were wearing camo and might have guns.
5/19/14 – Several agencies responded to a two-vehicle accident with injuries at the intersection of U.S. 35 and State Road 8 north of Knox.
5/19/14 – A two-vehicle property damage accident was reported at the intersection of 300 East and State Road 10 in Knox.
5/19/14 – A resident in the 200 block of West Howard Drive in North Judson asked to speak to an officer about a problem with the neighbor kids. A deputy told the youngsters to stay off the roadway or their quads would be impounded.
5/19/14 – A resident in the 1800 block of East 350 South in Knox reported the theft of her trash can.
5/20/14 – A resident in the 4900 block of South 260 West in North Judson asked to speak to an officer because she gave someone a ride home, he took a box of diapers and refused to give them back.
5/20/14 – A resident in the 1900 block of West 200 South in North Judson reported his neighbor keeps cutting across his property on his motorcycle, causing damage.
5/21/14 – A caller reported a vehicle versus deer accident on State Road 8 and said the driver brought the Jeep home.
5/21/14 – Multiple departments responded to a report of a vehicle fire on 500 North east of Howard’s in Grovertown.
5/21/14 – Douglas W. Kays, 57, of Rochester, was stopped on Toto Road west of 625 and cited for driving 64/45.
5/21/14 – Officers responded to a report of a property damage accident at Bass Lake Marina. An intoxicated driver reportedly hit several mailboxes.
5/21/14 – A resident in the 8000 block of North Tecumseh Road in Koontz Lake reported someone is busting the windows out of the house next door.
5/21/14 – Deputies took residential burglary report from a resident in the 4200 block of South 210 in Knox.
5/21/14 – A resident in the 8400 block of South Ash Street in Monterey reported that he and his roommate were just threatened by two men who live down the road. They reportedly have weapons at their residence.
5/22/14 – A resident in the 5700 block of East 200 South in Knox reported a neighbor’s dog keeps running loose and getting into his trash. Dispatchers have gotten several complaints about this dog.
5/22/14 – A resident in the 5600 block of North SR 23 in Grovertown called the sheriff’s department to file a theft report.
5/22/14 – A resident in the 2300 block of East 200 South reported someone has broken into her garage. She’s not sure if anything is missing.
5/22/14 – A resident in the 5600 block of North State Road 23 in Grovertown reports more property has been stolen.
5/22/14 – A deputy responded to a vehicle versus deer crash at the intersection of U.S. 421 and 400 South.
5/23/14 – A caller in the 8900 block of South Jefferson Street in Monterey reported the discovery of possible methamphetamine-related trash.
5/24/14 – A resident in the 7200 block of South 250 West in North Judson asked to file a criminal damage report stemming from an incident involving his neighbor and his mailbox the previous evening.
5/24/14 – A deputy responded to a property damage accident on 400 North west of U.S. 35 in Knox.
5/24/14 – A resident in the 8000 block of Wakew Lane in Walkerton reported the theft of several items from his residence.
5/24/14 – Extra patrol was requested in the area of Kramers Beach in Koontz Lake after juveniles reportedly had a party there the previous night, tore up a pier and used it for firewood and left a mess on the beach.
5/24/14 – Multiple agencies were called to a traffic accident at 200 North and 700 East in Grovertown.
5/24/14 – Martin G. Shell, 52, of North Judson, hit a deer on State Road 10 just east of State Road 39 in North Judson.
5/25/14 – A resident in the 4600 block of South 550 East in Knox asked officers to check the area behind her residence for people back there with flashlights.
5/25/14 – Officers responded to a property damage accident on U.S. 35 in front of Johnson’s Lumber in Knox.
5/25/14 – A caller on 50 North west of 1200 East in Knox asked to speak to an officer about criminal damage to equipment.
5/25/14 – A deputy responded to a property damage accident in the 11300 block of East Cline Avenue in Koontz Lake.
5/25/14 – A resident in the 5100 block of North 900 East in Grovertown reported two people fleeing on foot from her residence toward 600 North.

Arrests
5/18/14 – Michael G. Buschman, 23, Milwaukee, Wis.: O.V.W.I.
5/19/14 – Przemyslaw M. Kurkowski, 24, Knox: Disorderly conduct.
5/20/14 – Anthony Joseph Chasse, 20, Knox: Reckless driving.

Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department

Incidents

Pulaski County Sheriff Michael Gayer

Pulaski County Sheriff Michael Gayer

5/13/14- Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a drive-off at a local gas station. The motorist failed to pay for $30.01 worth of gas.
5/14/14- Winamac Police were called to a home to remove an unwanted guest.
5/16/14- A pair of solar panels were reported stolen to the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department.
5/16/14- Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies respond to a report of battery involving a mother and daughter.
5/17/14- A boat and trailer are reported stolen to the Winamac Police.
5/17/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s deputies take a report of two stolen push mowers.
5/17/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies respond to the reported theft of two push mowers.
5/18/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies respond to a report of workplace harassment.
5/18/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies respond to a trespassing report in Medaryville.
5/19/14 – A theft of narcotic medication is reported to the Winamac Police Department.
5/20/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies are called to a verbal dispute between neighbors.
5/20/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputies and Winamac Police respond to a landlord-tenant dispute.
5/20/14 – Pulaski County Sheriff’s Dpeuties respond to a report of trespassing in Winamac.
5/21/14 – Winamac Police respond to a report of a drive-off from a gas station.

Knox City Council Takes Final Action on Outdoor Storage Ordinance

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The two-year long discussion on the outdoor storage ordinance in the city of Knox could come to a close soon.

The Knox City Council voted last night to reject the plan commission’s outdoor storage ordinance as it doesn’t have wording to allow for special use.

The council members were not settled on a certain setback of an outdoor display at a business. The 25-foot setback was what needed to be changed and the council members were trying to decide the best way to go about that change.

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Starke County Election Board Accepts Resignation, Discusses Issues at the Polls

The Starke County Election Board met Tuesday morning to discuss some issues that arose during the Primary Election.

Pat Mitchell, who has been a member of the Starke County Election Board for many years, tendered his resignation. He cited declining health as his reason for resigning, but noted that he’s enjoyed serving the county in this capacity for many years.

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Winamac Hotel Project on Hold

The hotel project in Winamac is in a holding pattern, according to Nathan Origer, Director of the Pulaski County Community Development Commission.

He indicated that they are working out some details with the hotel company, Wisconsin-based Cobblestone Development.

“We are trying to get on the same page on some different financing options,” explained Origer. “We’re also still looking at final property options. We are still very eagerly looking for individuals in the Winamac area who are interested in learning more about investing in the project.”

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Culver Community School Board Hires Assistant Principal/Athletic Director

CulverHSA familiar face at Culver Community High School will be back next year in a dual role. Speech teacher Luke Biernacki  is the new assistant principal for the middle and high schools and and athletic director for the entire corporation. The Culver Community School Board hired him last night after a brief executive session. Superintendent Dr. Vicki McGuire says combining the administrative roles will allow for more dedicated academic accountability by the principals, as well as working on improving graduation rates. Biernacki says the opportunity is a perfect fit for his career goals.

“I’ve had my administrative license for a couple of years and been looking to move up,” he said in an interview after the meeting. “I’ve always wanted to move up with this corporation. It’s been a wonderful experience for the past six years. What I love most is the people I work with and the students and the community. It’s the best I’ve ever seen, and I look forward to continuing to work with them.”

Biernacki adds he wants to continue to meet the students’ needs and provide them the best possible experience. He’s also looking forward to working with new Culver Community High School Principal Brett Berndt and coaches as he transitions into his dual role.

 

 

 

Pulaski County Commissioners Approve Emergency Well Replacement

Pulaski County Commissioners Larry Brady, Terry Young and Tracey Shorter

Pulaski County Commissioners Larry Brady, Terry Young and Tracey Shorter

The Pulaski County Commissioners were forced call an emergency meeting last night after the well pump at the county recycling center quit. Maintenance supervisor Jeff Johnston scrambled to get prices for repair options. They ranged from a high of $11,250 to run 1,500 feet of water line and connect to the town’s infrastructure to a low of $2,450 to repair their existing well pump. The commissioners voted unanimously to hire Bill Montgomery Well Drilling to drill a new well and replace the existing infrastructure for a cost of $4,400. They noted this will solve the problem of having to heat the pump in the winter, as it will be located inside a building. Also the new well will last indefinitely. The commissioners cited concerns over having to make additional repairs had they opted to fix what was already in place. Tying into the town system was deemed too expensive an option, as it would carry a recurring monthly water bill. Johnston did not have a time frame on how long the work will take. He told the commissioners he will see that it starts as soon as possible. The commissioners had previously advertised a special session to discuss animal control for the county. That meeting was cancelled and has not yet been rescheduled.

Three Arrested on Drug Charges

Plymouth city officers went to a home in the 700 block of Mansfield Street in Plymouth to serve and execute the warrant in a theft investigation. Upon searching the residence, officers reportedly found stolen property along with substances believed to be methamphetamine and heroin. Police also allegedly found drug paraphernalia inside the home.  Continue reading

LaPorte Man Arrested on Firearm Charges after Traffic Stop

Nathan E. Harrison

Nathan E. Harrison

A LaPorte man was arrested early last week after police found him in possession of a stolen handgun.

LaPorte police conducted a traffic stop after they found that Nathan E. Harrison, 33, had disregarded a stop sign at Hillcrest Street and Southmoor Avenue.

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Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department Honors Fallen Heroes

pulaski county sheriff memorial 2As they have for the past eight years, members of the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department hosted the annual memorial service on May 27 in front of the Sheriff’s Department in Winamac.

This ceremony is held to honor the memory of three fallen officers from the Pulaski County police force. The department recognized Sheriff Charles Henry Oglesby, Sheriff Milo “Mike” Lewis and Deputy Sheriff Shadron Kiley “Shad” Bassett who were all tragically lost in the line of duty. Family members received honorary license plates from the station.

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Older Adults Invited to Pulaski County Human Services Picnic

Pulaski County Human ServicesOlder adults are invited to the Winamac Town Park today for the annual Pulaski County Human Services Senior Citizen Picnic. It takes place from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the community building. Food and beverages will be provided. Blood pressure screenings will also be available. The documentary “Age of Champions” will be screened as well. The Pulaski County Human Services Von Tobel Center in Winamac and West Side Center in Medaryville will both be closed so staff members can attend the picnic, and home-delivered meals will not be provided.