More Openings Moved to Phase 3, Coronavirus Hospitalizations Drop Dramatically

Coronavirus Wednesday Update
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Chicago, IL) Lake County saw an increase in both Coronavirus cases and deaths on Wednesday, as did Illinois as a whole. The Illinois Department of Public Health announced 2,388 new cases, to go along with 147 fatalities. Lake County saw increases of 196 instances of Covid-19 along with 10 deaths. Even with those higher numbers, the state saw another drop in the overall positive infection rate. That number now stands at 15.6%, and the rolling 7-day rate remained unchanged at 14%. Hospitalizations in the Northeast Region of Illinois, which includes Lake County, have dropped over 44% since May 1st.

Changes Coming As Illinois Set’s Up Phase 3
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Chicago, IL) As Illinois’ next stage of reopening gets closer, Governor JB Pritzker announced some relaxed rules that will allow even more places to open. The Governor said that starting on May 29th, bars and restaurants can start offering outdoor table service, with proper social distancing and mask requirements. All retail stores will also be allowed to open with capacity and safety restrictions, as will hair and nail salons. Golf courses, which are currently heavily restricted, will have most of those requirements relaxed…and gyms can offer one on one personal training and outdoor classes of up to 10 people. Camping and state park access will be opened as well…again with restrictions.

Governor Backs Off Misdemeanor Plan for Businesses That Defy Stay at Home Order
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Chicago, IL) Governor JB Pritzker has backed off his plan to charge businesses that defy his stay at home order. Under the executive order, a class A misdemeanor could have been leveled against businesses that flouted the rules. A pushback from the Illinois Sheriff’s Association, some individual County Sheriff’s and Republican lawmakers, the Governor withdrew the idea. Legislators say they will now work on a plan that better spells out how to deal with those rules going forward.

Judge Denies Lake County Sheriff’s Want for Covid-19 Patient Information
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Waukegan, IL) A Judge has denied a request from the Lake County Sheriff, that would have provided law enforcement with information on Coronavirus patients. Judge Daniel Jasica said while it is imperative to keep Sheriff’s deputies safe, it’s also important to honor the privacy of residents. Sheriff John Idleburg will not appeal the ruling. There was one exception made in that Lake County Jail officials can call the Health Department to find out if a new inmate had previously tested positive for the illness.

Waukegan Shooting Investigation
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Waukegan, IL) Police in Waukegan are investigating a shooting. Officials say the incident took place just before noon on Wednesday in the area of Clarke Avenue and Beasley Place. A 15-year-old boy was found lying in the street with bullet wounds. That teen was transported to the hospital where he was in serious but stable condition. Police believe the victim was the intended target of the crime. No arrests have been made, and the investigation into the shooting is considered open and active.

Man Wanted in Texas, Arrested in Lake County
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Mundelein, IL) A man wanted on warrants out of Texas, has been arrested in Lake County. Sheriff’s officials say Patrick Tillman was wanted on a warrant out of Houston for aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14. Authorities believe the 30-year-old fled Texas, and spent some time in Hawaii and New York, before eventually coming to Lake County. Tillman was arrested Tuesday at a residence in unincorporated Mundelein, and is being held in the Lake County Jail pending extradition. Barry Metz, a 64-year-old from Cary, was also arrested at the residence, on a warrant for violating a court order. He was given a notice to appear in court in late June.

Supreme Court: Circuit courts can return to normal June 1
Associated Press 5-21-20

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) The Illinois Supreme Court says the state’s courts can return to normal operations beginning June 1. In Wednesday’s order, implementing those reopening plans will be left up to the chief judges of the state’s 24 judicial circuits. The justices urge social distancing measures remain in place and a way found to reduce the number of people physically present in court facilities. The Supreme Court on March 17 ordered state judges to limit in-person proceedings to essential cases and delay other matters. The justices also ordered the shift of a sizable share of the courts’ business to videoconferencing platforms.

Des Plaines Falling, Fox Waterway System Shuttered
Vander Tuuk 5-21-20

(Gurnee, IL) The Des Plaines River is continuing to recede, while the Fox Waterway system has more restrictions. The National Weather Service says monitors on the Des Plaines show the river remaining in minor flood stage near Russell, and in the moderate flood stage at both Gurnee and Lincolnshire. River forecasts show, that without any addition rain, the river should be below flood stage in all areas either late Sunday or early Monday. On the western side of the county, the Chain O’ Lakes is now closed to boating. The Fox Waterway Agency says the action was taken as of 5 o’clock yesterday afternoon…the Chain joins the upper and lower Fox River, which had been closed because of flooding and debris in the water.