Today's News

Students Thriving at The Crossing

Starke County's Crossing campus is located next to Save a Lot on U.S. 35 south of Knox.

Starke County’s Crossing campus is located next to Save a Lot on U.S. 35 south of Knox.

The 29 students enrolled at Starke County’s newest school are thriving in the non-traditional learning environment. The Crossing alternative school opened recently and offers a second chance to students who have been expelled from or dropped out of public schools. Principal Quentin Bishop says the school is an extension of the students’ sending schools.

“This is like a classroom just down the road from their sending school. We have that type of relationship, that type of partnership to say we’re not only just The Crossing Education Center working as an independent school. We’re actually in partnership with our public schools,” Bishop said. Continue reading

Knox City Council to Move Forward with Refinancing Water Bonds

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council will be considering refinancing the water bonds to save money over the life of the bonds.

Mayor Rick Chambers explained how much the city could save each year of the life of the bonds.

“We’re currently paying on two water bonds. The first one will be paid off in 2025 and we owe about $650,000 on that one. The second one will be paid off three years later in 2028 and we owe about $950,000 on that one – so, about $1.6 million. Right now we’re paying 4.75 percent interest on one and almost five on the other. Umbaugh believes we re-bond in the low threes. Over the life of 14 years, we could save about $150,000,” explained Chambers.

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More Police Patrols Planned Over The Weekend

 The Operation Pull Over safe driving campaign will be in effect this weekend for the State and local law enforcement agencies.

Additional patrols on the road in high traffic areas as well as sobriety checkpoints will be arranged. Troopers will be looking for aggressive drivers that are speeding, following too close, making unsafe lane changes and not wearing seatbelts.

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BMV Branches to Close for Labor Day

If you have business with the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles, you need to take care of it today or wait until Tuesday. BMV branches across the state are closing tomorrow and Monday in observance of the Labor Day holiday. Normal business hours will resume on Tuesday. More information about BMV branches and services offered is available online at




New App Could Assist Schools in an Emergency

The Knox City Police Department is working with Hamlet Police Chief Frank Lonigro in introducing a new app to school corporations for emergency purposes.

Chief Clint Norem told the Knox Board of Public Works members Wednesday morning that Chief Lonigro learned about this app in training and both of them are finding out more information on how to provide the app to the schools that will allow teachers to hit a panic button on their smart phone if there happens to be an emergency.

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Marshall County Police Looking for Police Impersonator

Marshall County police are investigating a recent report of a police impersonator in the area.

The victim told police that he was pulled over for erratic driving after he swerved to miss a dog in the roadway. The vehicle the impersonator was driving was a tan Ford Taurus with an older style full light bar on top which displayed flashing red and blue lights. There were no grill lights, spotlights or decals on the vehicle.

The impersonator was described as a Caucasian male, 5’11”-6’ in height, muscular build with short blonde hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a uniform with brown pants with a dark stripe down the side, but there were no patches, badges or other law enforcement identification on the uniform.

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Knox City Council Tables Community Center Use Request

Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center

Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center

The Knox City Council members held discussion on the use of the Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center by area church groups.

The request was to use the facility free of charge once a week to provide enough space to serve meals to community members in need. The great room or executive room would be used along with the kitchen in order to prepare the meals for service. A different church group would use the facility once a week to host the meals and four hours would be set aside for preparation, service and clean-up.

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Knox Board of Public Works Discusses Drug Testing Policy

The Knox Board of Public Works approved a change in the drug testing policy for employees.

Knox Mayor Rick Chambers explained that the policy is outdated. The current policy requires all employees to be drug tested when the state only requires employees with a CDL to be tested. The requirement for all employees to be tested takes time away from their daily duties and the mayor suggested that it’s “overkill”.

Mayor Chambers suggested to the board that an ordinance be drawn up by City Attorney David Matsey that requires prospective employees be drug tested and those with a CDL to be randomly drug tested throughout the year.

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Knox Park Board to Consider Safety Suggestions

City of Knox logoThe Knox Park Board will consider suggestions offered recently to curb vandalism at Wythogan Park when they meet this evening. Mayor Rick Chambers recently hosted a community discussion to gather thoughts on the issue. Afterward he said several good suggestions were offered, including a stronger police presence and writing more curfew tickets to juveniles who are in the park after hours. Continue reading

Fire Marshal to Investigate Factory Fire, City Council Praise Efforts of Firefighters

An investigator from the Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Office will be in Knox tomorrow to determine the cause of the fire at Standard Pallet on 300 East on Friday. Firefighters from four different fire departments were on the scene for nine hours to ensure that the fire was extinguished.

On Tuesday night, the Knox City Council members expressed their gratitude to the firefighters for their dedication to the safety of the citizens of Knox. It was noted that the firefighters are volunteers and it’s their life and time they put on the line to respond to a fire and to assist the needs of residents. Some firefighters made sure to notify employers of the situation last week and stayed on the scene to make sure that the area was secure before leaving.

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SCILL Offers Adult Welding Classes

SCILLAdults who want to learn to weld or enhance their skills can take advantage of opportunities offered through the Starke County Initiative for Lifelong Learning. Classes offered through the SCILL Center’s Adult Welding Technology program meet two evenings per week for four hours at a time for 12 weeks. Continue reading

Monterey Days Festival Set for This Weekend

The 17th annual Monterey Days Festival is back this weekend.

Festivities get under way Friday with the Mister and Miss Monterey Days Pageant.

Saturday’s events include the Knights of Columbus pancake and sausage breakfast at 8 a.m. EDT and free carnival rides at 10 a.m. while the tractor pull will start up an hour later at 11. Later on Saturday The Monterey Days Parade will begin around 5 p.m. and will be followed by kiss the pig contest.

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Gayheart Sentenced to 20 Years on Drug Charges

  A Starke County man was sentenced in Starke Circuit Court Monday morning on several drug charges.

Corbin Gayheart pleaded guilty in a plea agreement with the state to three charges in two separate cases. Judge Kim Hall accepted the plea agreement and sentenced Gayheart per the terms of that agreement.

Gayheart will serve 10 years in the Indiana Department of Corrections with two years suspended on a charge of possession of methamphetamine within 1,000 feet of a public park as a Class B felony. He was given an 18-month sentence with no part of the sentence suspended on a charge of possession of precursors or chemical reagents with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine as a Class D felony. Those sentences will run concurrently, or at the same time.

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Knox Business Fire Investigation Delayed Until Friday

The investigation into the origin of a recent fire at a Knox business has been delayed. Knox-Center Township Volunteer Fire Department Chief Kenny Pfost says they will look into the cause of the Aug. 22 blaze at Standard Pallet on County Road 300 East on Friday. Continue reading

Rain Blamed For Culvert Collapse, Repair Delays

Rain is hampering efforts to repair a culvert that collapsed Monday, forcing the closure of a Starke County Road. County highway superintendent Rik Ritzler tells WKVI News the culvert on 125 West just north of 250 North collapsed Monday. A county highway crew is making repairs but was unable to finish the work yesterday due to the rain. Ritzler hopes they can wrap up the work today so the road can reopen. Until then 125 West is closed between 250 and 300 North. Continue reading

Knox City Council Approves Grant Match for Blight Elimination Program Grant

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council approved a 10 percent match to attempt to get a grant to rid the city of some unsafe homes.

It’s part of the Blight Elimination Program which would assist the city in purchasing homes that are listed as unsafe and blighted and demolish them. The majority of the homes that would be considered for this grant are in the Parkview Heights area.

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Knox Board of Works to Meet Today

The Knox Board of Public Works will meet today with a light agenda.

The board members will discuss bids for tree cutting and discuss a drug screening policy for employees.

Water Superintendent Todd Gardner, Street Superintendent Jeff Borg, Wastewater Superintendent Kelly Clemons, and Knox City Police Chief Clint Norem will have updates from activities in their departments.

The meeting is open to the public and begins at 9:30 a.m. CT in Knox City Hall.

Power Restored Across Kankakee Valley, More Storms Possible

The lights are back on for NIPSCO and Kankakee Valley REMC customers after a strong thunderstorm rolled through the area yesterday afternoon. Neither utility is reporting outages at this time. Yesterday more than 1,000 NIPSCO and 230 Kankakee Valley REMC customers were without power. Continue reading

Chavez Appears in Starke Circuit Court for Initial Hearing

 The man accused of beating his estranged wife to death at a home in Knox, kidnapping an employee in a vehicle from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center, and carjacking a vehicle from a couple in English Lake appeared in Starke Circuit Court Monday afternoon for his initial hearing.

Gary Chavez pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, kidnapping and carjacking. He told Judge Kim Hall that his family is working on getting an attorney for him. An attorney status hearing is set for Sept. 5 at 9 a.m. but will be vacated if a notice of an attorney has been filed with the court. His omnibus date was set for Oct. 9.

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