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Justice

Second Cherry Orchard landlord released from custody in legal mix-up

By Dave Hinton/Rantoul Press/WASHINGTON, D.C. — Bernard Ramos is a free man again.

A legal mix-up has led to the release of the former caretaker at Cherry Orchard Village apartment complex. 

Ramos was arrested in early April by Washington, D.C., police on one civil contempt warrant and one criminal contempt warrant issued by Champaign County last year. 

But D.C. authorities released Ramos before he could be extradited to Illinois. 

Bill Miller, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Columbia, said Ramos posted $5,000 bond in Superior Court of the District of Columbia and was released April 12.

File photo. Ariel view of Cherry Orchard property south of Rantoul. The complex remains closed under a court order as Champaign County continue to keep its landlords, father-son team Eduardo and Bernardo Ramos, from renting it out until the property's septic lines can be legally repaired.
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Hearing continued for Cherry Orchard landlord

By Dave Hinton/Rantoul Press/An apartment complex caretaker who was arrested last month in Virginia on two contempt-of-court warrants was ordered to be back in Champaign County Circuit Court April 26. 

Eduardo Ramos was arrested Feb. 25 at the Dulles International Airport in Virginia. 

Last May, Judge John Kennedy approved two separate petitions for civil contempt of court and criminal contempt of court against Ramos and his son, Bernard Ramos, the caretakers of Cherry Orchard Village apartments, located between Rantoul and Thomasboro, for failure to follow the judge’s orders. 

Dave Hinton/Rantoul Press/A new permanant sign prohibiting entry stands in front of a driveway at the Cherry Orchard apartment complex. Champaign County health officials posted the sign last week.
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Champaign man refutes police account of son’s alleged beating

By Sean Powers/Illinois Public Media -- Critics of the Champaign Police Department are expressing outrage, and a differing account of the arrest of an African-American teen last weekend, that they say involved excessive use of force.

Police say Calvin Miller ran a red light and swerved into traffic to avoid police on Monday at around 1:30 am, and then at one point, jumped from a moving van, which hit the front of the house. Police say Miller then reached for the officer’s duty belt, and the officer struck him with his hand.

Sean Powers/Illinois Public Media -- Martel Miller, left, talks with Champaign Mayor Don Gerard during Tuesday's City Council meeting. Miller said his son Calvin, 18, was beaten by Champaign police.
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Champaign police-community relations scrutinized

By Sean Powers/Illinois Public Media -- The topic of police abuse brought out a large crowd to Tuesday night’s Champaign City Council study session. It wasn’t an item on the agenda, but it grew out of the alleged police beating of a teenager who was stopped by Champaign police over the weekend for a traffic violation.

At least a hundred people showed up in support of 18-year-old Calvin Miller. They wore yellow “I stand with Calvin Miller” signs.

Multiple news reports say Miller was pulled over by police at around 1:30 Monday morning, and he fled the scene after his car damaged the front porch of a home.

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Sean Powers/Illinois Public Media -- Martel Miller, left, talks with Champaign Mayor Don Gerard during Tuesday's City Council meeting. Miller said his son Calvin, 18, was beaten by Champaign police.
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Migrant workers win lawsuit against seed company

Dave Hinton/Rantoul Press editor/An Indiana seed company has agreed to pay more than $200,000 to 91 migrant farm workers, including several workers who formerly resided in the Rantoul area.

Remington Hybrid Seed Co. of Remington, Ind., reached a settlement to make the payment. A 2008 federal lawsuit was filed against the company in Texas for violations of the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 and for breach of contract.

Courtesy photo/Miguel Keberlein, left, of the Illinois Migrant Legal Assistance Project, speaks with a migrant farm worker in a farm field. The organization seeks to guard the rights of migrant farm workers.
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Athlete-turned-addict finds faith, help

By Jenn Kloc/For CU-CitizenAccess — Everyone expected Charles “Tyke” Peacock to bring home a gold medal from the 1984 Olympics. No one suspected that he faked an injury to avoid the Olympic qualifiers and hide his drug addiction.

Fast forward 27 years: On Monday, a judge will decide whether Urbana-native Peacock, 50, must surrender to a six-year prison sentence for burglary or if he can finish recovering from his addiction at the Men’s Substance Abuse Free Environment (SAFE) House, a 12-month rehabilitation program through the Canaan Baptist Church in Urbana. 

Jenn Kloc/Charles "Tyke" Peacock, 50, stands outside the Men's Substance Abuse Free Environment (SAFE) House, operated through the Canaan Baptist Church, in Urbana. Peacock will find out Monday if he is to serve a six-year prison sentence for burglary or continue treatment at the SAFE House. At one-time, Peacock was ranked the top high jumper in the world.
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Student project offers in-depth look at crime on campus

Thanks to the efforts of a journalism class at the University of Illinois, you now know the true measure of crime on campus.

CU-CitizenAccess/Screen shot from campuscrime.net, an interactive journalism collaboration that examines crime on campus
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Local police departments continue to deny open records requests

By Dan Petrella— Complaints filed by white residents with the Champaign Police Department were three times more likely to be upheld than those filed by black residents, an analysis of police records from 2006 to 2008 shows.

Dan Petrella/A police cruiser sits outside the Champaign Police Department on the corner of University Avenue and First Street in Champaign. An analysis of police records dated from 2006 to 2008 show that compliants filed by white residents were three times likely to be upheld than those filed by black residents
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