Kane County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

More than 70 artists are expected on Aug. 25 when the Alley Art Festival returns to recently-renovated Water Street Mall in downtown Aurora.


Corrections officer charge in sexual assault

A Kane County corrections officer faces criminal charges for engaging in sexual activity with a jail inmate.

Kane County prosecutors have charged 52-year-old John H. Johnson with the offenses of:

  • Criminal sexual assault, Class 1 felony
  • Custodial sexual misconduct, Class 3 felony
  • Official misconduct, Class 3 felony, 2 counts

Kane County State’s Attorney Joe McMahon alleges in charging documents that on June 23, 2018, Johnson, a penal system employee, sexually assaulted the victim, who was in custody in the Kane County jail at the time.

According to Kane County Sheriff Donald Kramer, the incident was reported to sheriff’s office officials on June 25. Johnson was placed on administrative leave when he reported to work June 26.

Kramer asked the Kane County Major Crimes Task Force to conduct the investigation in accordance with Illinois’ Police and Community Relations Improvement Act of 2015, which requires an independent investigation in allegations of misconduct.

Kramer said Johnson has worked as a Kane County corrections officer since February 2004, and that Johnson was assigned to booking and intake at the time of the incident. Johnson remains of administrative leave.

If convicted of the most serious offense, Johnson faces a sentence of between four and 15 years’ imprisonment in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

“I expect all officers and staff to treat all members of the community with dignity and respect,” Kramer said. “I appreciate the professionalism of the Kane County Major Crimes Task Force in this investigation.”


Alley Art Festival to bring 70 artists to Water St. Mall

More than 70 artists are expected on Aug. 25 when the Alley Art Festival returns to recently-renovated Water Street Mall in downtown Aurora.

The eighth annual event, which runs from noon-5 p.m., will feature artists selling jewelry, pottery, handmade goods, and more. Live entertainment is also planned.

“Alley Art Festival is going to launch a fun weekend of art and music on Water Street Mall in downtown Aurora. We’ll have incredible artists – some seasoned, and some showing for the first time – with their one-of-a-kind works. There will be food, ice cream, and fun activities for children. It’s a true day of community,” said Marissa Amoni, event coordinator for Aurora Downtown.

More information is available at www.auroradowntown.org


Tourism contributes to local tax base, spending

Kane County generated $481.73 million in local tax revenue and $10.83 million in visitor expenditures in 2017 according to the Illinois Office of Tourism.

Both international and domestic travel expenditures in Illinois reached $39.5 billion in 2017 which is a $1.1 billion boost to the state’s economy since 2016. Visitors to the state hit an all time high in 2017 with an additional 1.6 million travelers from 2016 contributing to an increase of visitor spending, tax revenue and local jobs.

“Illinois is the perfect destination for anyone looking for a new experience – whether it’s an outdoor adventure, a scenic road trip, incredible nightlife, or a family-friendly activity – there truly is something for everybody,” said Cory Jobe, director of Illinois Tourism. “The added boost in state and local tax revenue is a testament to the continued impact that tourism continues to have on Illinois.”


Volunteers sought for dog rescue fundraiser

Yorkville-based Jellystone Bark’s Rescue Rangers, a nonprofit, volunteer dog-rescue group, announces its first benefit fundraiser on Saturday, Aug. 11, and a call for volunteers to assist.

The public is invited to the activity-filled benefit to be held from 9:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Bicentennial Riverfront Park, 310 E. Hydraulic St. in Yorkville.

Training for volunteers will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 3, at 6 p.m. at Riverfront Park. Prospective volunteers unable to attend should contact Amy Hiland-Crachy at (630) 383-1275 or e-mail amy.hiland-crachy@thrivent.com.

The fundraiser opens at 9:45 a.m. with registration for a .1K  (328 feet) Rangers’ Rescue Run for runners and dogs at the park. Entry fees are $15 for Individuals and $30 for families. After group calisthenics at 10:45 a.m. the run will begin at 11 a.m.

Registered runners will receive a run day shirt, a .1K sticker and lunch. Register are rangersrescuerun.eventbrite.com. 

The event will also feature dog training information from professional  trainer Bridget Wolcott of Plainfield, Frisbee catch with dogs, face painting, cartoon sketches, vendors and food trucks. 

The fundraiser supports animal transportation from high-kill shelters, veterinarian services, food costs, microchips, boarding expenses,neutering and foster-care expenses. 


AU softball stadium to be named for late AD

The new softball stadium at Aurora University’s Spartan Athletic Park in Montgomery will be dedicated in honor of late athletic director, coach and instructor Sam Bedrosian on Saturday, Oct. 13, during 125th anniversary Homecoming 2018

All Spartan fans are invited to attend the dedication  For more than three decades at Aurora College and its successor Aurora University, Bedrosian had a strong impact on his student-athletes. The 400,000-square-foot stadium reflects his record of winning softball teams–continued under current Coach Mike McKenzie–and AU’s commitment to providing its student-athletes with quality facilities.

More information about the event will be provided in the next issue of “Spartan Report” and online at alumni.aurora.edu. 

To learn more about the stadium, visit spartans.aurora.edu


Family Fun Carp Derby means fun for all ages

Summer is the ideal time to connect with family and friends and bond over some Fox River fishing.  What better way than to relax and fish as a part of Montgomery Fest’s 45th Annual Family Fun Carp Derby?

On Aug. 12, between the hours of 6 a.m. and 2 p.m. join a family member or two or three or a neighbor, and bring your fishing rods.

Registration begins at 6 a.m. and continues through 10 a.m. on the day of the Derby at the Judge’s Table on the west side of the Mill Street Bridge. Fees are just $2 for ages 15 and under and $10 for those 16 and over.  Contestants under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

All carp must be live and weighed in by 2 p.m. at the Judge’s Table at the Mill Street Bridge. Also, no live bait or worms can be used. All carp must be caught in the Fox River between the Ashland Avenue Bridge and Route 30 Bridge on Aug. 12.

Trophies will be awarded for the grand champion (largest carp by weight) as well as trophies according to two age groups.  For ages 15 and under, there will be trophies for the 1st place, and 2nd, and 3rd runners up.  For those16 and up, similar trophies will be awarded.  


Police focus on safety education for college students

How to be safe on campus is the topic of two sessions Naperville police will hold for students headed to college.

The first, “Safety for the College Bound Student,” will be held at 7 p.m. Aug. 1, at the Naperville Police Station, 1350 Aurora Ave. It will focus on new college freshmen and their families and will cover such topics as drugs, alcohol, the law and personal safety while on a college campus.

A self-defense class for high school and college-age women will be held at 6 p.m. Aug. 2, at Naperville Safety Town, 1320 Aurora Ave.

No registration is required for the first program but participants must sign up for the self-defense workshop.

The two sessions are part of the police department’s effort to increase back-to-school-safety education during August. The police plan to promote safe driving, safe school walk routes and general safety tips via its website and social media.

For more information or to register for the self-defense class, contact crime prevention specialist Mary Browning at 630-420-6731.



–Kane County News Briefs–