Kendall County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

On Jan. 3, Kendall County Sheriff Dwight Baird (right) and Deputy Jason Flanders wished K9 Taz a happy retirement. (Photo courtesy of Kendall Co. Sheriff)


Special Needs residents encouraged for SNAPP Program

The Special Needs Aurora Police Program, or SNAPP, helps residents with special needs and their family members communicate those needs to first responders to better equip them in an emergency.

The program, developed in partnership with the Association for Individual Development, is available to all Aurora residents with mental and physical disabilities as well as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The program is completely voluntary.

By filling out the two forms, residents, parents and guardians are consenting to have information added to a searchable database available to police officers, paramedics, and other first responders. When officers or other first responders are called to a home, they will be able to look up the address and find information relating to the person and their disability that may help officers respond appropriately in an emergency.

If you are a person with special needs and you would like to participate in SNAPP, fill out the SNAPP Registration Form and the SNAPP Self Release Form at

Form may be emailed, or mailed or delivered in person to:

Aurora Police Department
Attn: Detective J. Hillgoth
1200 E Indian Trail
Aurora, IL 60505

Suspects wanted in two shooting incidents

Aurora Police are seeking information on a couple of recent shootings, one of which ended with the victims crashing into a West Side house after being chased by the gunman.

Around 9 p.m. Dec. 30, three Aurora men, ages 19, 20, and 23, were at a gas station in the 1000 block of N. Lake Street, when another man began shouting gang-related slogans as he sat in his car parked in the lot. The three left the business and traveled southbound on Lake then turned westbound on Northpark when they saw the suspect vehicle an SUV, tailing them.

When multiple shots rang out, the 23-year-old driver of the victim vehicle, a 2008 BMW sedan, ducked down and accelerated continuing westbound. He believes he hit ice when he was near Highland Avenue, which caused him to lose control and slide into a home in the 1000 block of North Highland.

The driver was taken to an Aurora hospital by the Aurora Fire Department.

Paramedics and treated for minor injuries. His two passengers were not injured. The BMW and two other parked vehicles were all hit by gunfire.

The driver of the suspect vehicle who fired the shots was black, in his early ‘20’s, 5’10” to 6’0”, 150 to 160 lbs. There was another person in the vehicle but there is no description of the passenger.

Around 2:55 p.m., Jan. 1, a resident in the 900 block of Edwards Street. said he was sitting in his car when he heard something hit the unoccupied car next to him. When he got out of his car, he found a spent bullet in the driveway but no damage to the other vehicle.

A second bullet was found near the home’s garage. Nothing was apparently hit. It appears the bullets were fired from somewhere else and just happened to land where they were found.

If you have any information on either incident, call Investigations at (630) 256-5500 or Aurora Area Crime Stoppers at (630) 892-1000. Callers to Crime Stoppers are anonymous and qualify for a cash reward if your information leads to an arrest.

Police seek child pornography suspect

Aurora Area Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward of up to $5000 for information that leads to the arrest of a 21-year-old man who is wanted on a litany of felonies stemming from his relationships with underage girls.

Ellis Burns of the 1900 block of Lilac Lane, Aurora, has an active arrest warrant against him that lists his bail at $5 million. He is charged with two counts of soliciting a child for child pornography videos; five counts of soliciting a child for pornography photos, one count of criminal sexual assault, 13 counts of possession of child pornography, and single counts of intimidation, failure to register as a sex offender, and failure to inform a law enforcement agency when he changed his social media identifier which violated conditions of his parole. He also faces four misdemeanor counts of sexually abusing a juvenile, and two counts each of domestic battery and distributing obscene material to a minor. The solicitation charges are Class-X felonies and call for enhanced prison terms upon conviction.

If you have information on his whereabouts call Crime Stoppers at (630) 892-1000. All callers to Crime Stoppers remain anonymous. You can also call our Investigations Division at (630) 256-5500.

Kendall County

New sheriff’s deputy graduates from academy

On Dec. 22, Kendall County Sheriff’s Deputy John R. Undesser graduated from the Suburban Law Enforcement Academy, located at the College of DuPage in Glenn Ellyn.

Undesser attended the 14-week, 560-hour basic police academy. The next step in the training process for Undesser will be to complete the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office field training program.

He will be paired with an experienced Field Training Officer and will undergo a rigorous 14-week field training program, designed to put the knowledge acquired in the academy into practical use.

Undesser attended Western Illinois University and Illinois State University where he earned his bachelor’s degree in exercise science. Prior to his employment with the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office, he had been working as a corrections officer with the Kane County Sheriff’s Office.

Health Department issues radon warning

Radon is a colorless, odorless radioactive gas produced by the decay of uranium found within our soil, a natural and expected occurrence.

Kendall County’s geology is rich in uranium deposits, capable of producing high levels of radon gas. In the outdoor environment, radon gas readily escapes the ground, quickly dissipating into the air, without risk of human exposure.

However, radon gas can enter homes and other buildings through cracks and voids in basement and slab foundations, and poorly sealed crawlspace floors, where the gas can concentrate to harmful levels.

Decades of scientific research have shown a strong correlation between breathing harmful concentrations of radon gas — over long periods of time – with an increased risk of developing lung cancer. Radon gas is considered the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.

In fact, Centers for Disease Control estimates that there are about 21,000 radon induced lung cancer deaths nationally each year.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency considers a harmful level of radon gas, known as the indoor radon gas ‘action limit’, to be an indoor radon concentration meeting or exceeding 4 pCi/L (picocuries-per-liter).

Local indoor radon test data assembled by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency over the last ten years reveals an alarming statistic: 47 percent of the indoor radon tests performed in Kendall County homes shows results at or above the action limit.

So, if exposure to indoor radon gas over an extended period of time greatly increases the risk of one developing lung cancer.

Test your home to find out if you and your family are at risk. The good news is that exposure to radon gas is preventable. Testing is safe and easy; you can even do it yourself. Low-cost short-term test kits are available at the Kendall County Health Department; they can also be purchased from local home and hardware stores.

Or you may wish to seek the services of one of many local licensed radon measurement professionals.

Should you discover that you are at risk of exposure to harmful levels of indoor radon gas, there are steps that can be taken to reduce radon concentrations to acceptable levels.

If your results show a radon level meeting or exceeding the 4 pCi/l EPA action limit, call the health department. The department may be able to provide some low cost starting points for reducing if not eliminating your risk.
The department can also provide contact information for local licensed radon mitigation professionals that can help you mitigate your risk. Feel free to call the Kendall County Health Department at (630) 553-9100 or visit us on our website at

Sheriff’s Office announces K9 retirement

The Kendall County Sheriff Department is proud to announce the retirement of K9 Taz, an 11- year-old German shepherd who has spent the past eight years serving the community and the department.

On Jan. 3, the department and his handler Deputy Jason Flanders wished Taz a happy retirement. Sheriff Dwight Baird presented a plaque to Flanders and Taz for their eight years of service together at the Sheriff’s Office.

K9 Taz is a dual-purpose German shepherd from Poland. Taz specialized in narcotics detection and patrol work such as; tracking, handler protection, and evidence searches. Taz alongside his handler Deputy Flanders, a 19-year veteran, attended training at the Allen County Sheriff’s Office located in Indiana from September 2009 through December 2009.

Taz’s first day of service with the Sheriff’s Office was Jan. 1, 2010.

“Being a K9 handler was a childhood dream of mine and I am grateful that the Sheriff’s Office gave me the opportunity to realize my dream and I could not ask for a better partner than Taz. The bond shared between a K9 handler and partner is unlike any other,” Flanders said

Baird added, “K9 Taz and Deputy Flanders have been an outstanding team and I couldn’t be any prouder of the work they have done. Our K9 teams, both past and present, have always been a key in our mission to protect and serve.”


Oswego East senior selected as stage manager

Oswego East High School Senior, Valerie Anderson, who also serves as the president for the East Theatre Thespian Honor Society, was selected to be a stage manager for the Illinois High School Theatre Festival All-State Production of Big Fish held this year at Illinois State University. Over 500 students audition and interview to be part of the All-State production. Anderson attends rehearsals on specified weekends and travels around the state to be a part of the musical. She is the first student in Oswego East history to be named a stage manager for the All-State production and only the second student in Oswego East history to be selected for the All-State production.

Anderson will head down to ISU on Jan. 6 to begin the final preparations for this productions with performances Jan. 11-13.  Along with Oswego East Theater Directors Ms. Katie Belovsky and Ms. Nicole Schremp, 25 of Anderson’s theatre family will head down to participate in the Illinois High School Theatre Festival.


–Kendall County News Briefs–