The Weekly Post public record for 3-28-24

NOTE: Charges are merely an accusation. All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Police reports
• DUNLAP – A 13-year-old boy brought a stolen, loaded gun to a Dunlap school last week to show it off to friends, according to authorities.

The unidentified student at Dunlap Valley Middle School was being held in the Peoria County Juvenile Detention Center after he was taken into police custody March 19. He was accused of burglary, aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and unlawful possession of a stolen firearm.

A school-resource officer received word the boy might have a gun at school, according to the Peoria County State’s Attorney’s Office. The student admitted stealing the weapon, which was reported missing earlier this month from a vehicle in Peoria.

The boy said he brought the gun to school three times and showed it to peers. No other weapons were found at his residence. An ongoing investigation determined there was no plan to shoot anybody at school and no students and faculty were targeted.

• TRIVOLI – A Farmington man sustained what appeared to be serious injuries in an all-terrain-vehicle accident southwest of Trivoli.

Travis J. Shinnefield was driving a 2013 Honda TRX400X east about 7:15 p.m. March 16 on a dirt trail near the 700 block of N. Stone School Rd. when the ATV struck a ditch. Shinnefield’s passenger told him he was driving too fast, according to a Peoria County Sheriff’s Office report.

Shinnefield attempted to slow down but was thrown from the ATV when it struck the ditch and rolled multiple times. His passenger rolled to the ground. Shinnefield was unresponsive initially and was treated at the scene by Advanced Medical Transport and Logan-Trivoli Fire Protection District personnel.
A helicopter transported Shinnefield to OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria. There was no word about his condition. The ATV sustained disabling damage and was towed.

• YATES CITY – A Peoria woman’s blood-alcohol level was more than three times the legal limit following a single-vehicle accident north of Yates City.

Shortly after 7:15 p.m. March 17, Maire K. Ritchie, 26, was driving a northbound 2018 Chevrolet Equinox on Knox Highway 18 when the vehicle failed to negotiate a curve at Knox Road 750 North. The vehicle overturned in a ditch and rolled several times, according to Knox County Sheriff’s Office reports.

Ritchie said she had four or five drinks at a bar in West Peoria, then left for a location in Peoria. Following the accident, Ritchie said she believed she was in Peoria, one report stated. Ritchie was transported to OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria, where her BAC was measured at .252. The legal limit is .08.

In addition to driving under the influence of alcohol, Ritchie was accused of improper lane use and failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident. She is to appear May 1 in Knox County Circuit Court in Galesburg. Ritchie’s vehicle, a total loss, was towed.

• LAURA – A Laura woman accused of biting her boyfriend was wanted for other alleged crimes.

A Peoria County Sheriff’s Office deputy was dispatched about 8 p.m. March 15 to a residence in the 20800 block of W. Maple St. in Laura regarding a domestic dispute. Serenity M. Lopeman, 20, was arrested there and transported to the Peoria County Jail, according to a redacted sheriff’s-office report.
Lopeman was charged with domestic battery/physical contact. She also was accused of failure to appear in court regarding a no-bond Peoria County warrant for drunken driving, operating an uninsured motor vehicle and failure to reduce speed.

• OAK RUN – Police helped an Oak Run man avoid becoming the victim of an online scam that would have cost him more than $37,500.

The 71-year-old alerted the Knox County Sheriff’s Office about 5 p.m. March 12 about the incident, which happened earlier that day. He reported his home computer became locked and a subsequent message requested him to call a toll-free telephone number.

Someone who answered told the man an out-of-country purchase for $37,543.29 was made from an account at his bank, which the other person represented. The potential victim was told to obtain a cashier’s check for that amount and send it to a New York address, a sheriff’s-office report stated.

A deputy was able to retrieve the check from a Galesburg parcel-shipping business and return it to the man.

• HANNA CITY – A Hanna City driver clipped the rear of a parked flatbed semi-trailer truck as he was attempting to pass it.

Jay B. Sibley was behind the wheel of an eastbound 2006 Cadillac Escalade about 10:45 a.m. March 6 in the 7400 block of W. Smithville Rd. south of Hanna City when his vehicle struck the truck. It was parked on the south side of the road, according to a Peoria County Sheriff’s Office report.

The truck driver said he was preparing to unload building materials for a nearby residence. Sibley said he did not move far enough left to avoid the truck. No injuries were reported. The passenger side of Sibley’s vehicle sustained major damage from front bumper to rear.

• FARMINGTON – Jeremy D. Funches, 38, of Peoria was arrested shortly before 5 p.m. March 5 in the 1000 block of E. Fort St. on two Peoria County no-bond warrants for domestic battery, according to a Farmington police report. An officer transported Funches to the Fulton County Jail in Lewistown

• PRINCEVILLE – Ronald L. Potter Jr., 37, of Princeville was served a warrant about 8:45 a.m. March 5 for failure to appear in court on charges of forgery and deceptive practices, according to a Knox County Sheriff’s Office report. Potter already was being held in the Knox County Jail in Galesburg regarding another case.

• FARMINGTON – Justin F. Kling, 39, of Farmington was arrested shortly before 7 p.m. Feb. 27 in the 100 block of N. Oak St. on an unspecified Fulton County warrant. Kling said he didn’t have $1,000 to post bond, according to a Farmington police report. Kling was transported to the Fulton County Jail in Lewistown.

• EDWARDS – Paul M. Trainer, 45, of Edwards was arrested at 6:30 a.m. March 22 and accused of eavesdropping without consent/first offense, according to the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office.

• LAURA – Zachary D. Robertson, 35, of Laura was arrested shortly after 4 p.m. March 20 and accused of criminal trespass to state land, resisting/obstructing an officer and disorderly conduct, according to the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office.

• ELMWOOD – Zachary D. Bientema, 39, of Elmwood was arrested at 6:30 p.m. March 20 and accused of battery/bodily harm, according to the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office.

• PRINCEVILLE – Jaclyn M. Connolly, 34, of Princeville was arrested shortly after 11:15 p.m. March 16 and accused of driving under the influence of alcohol, according to the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office.

• GALESBURG – These were among calls to which the Knox County Sheriff’s Office responded between March 10-16: dispute, Williamsfield; fight, Yates City; fraud, Oak Run; disturbance, Yates City.