Winnebago County News Briefs


Help still available to assist on energy bills

Residents of Winnebago and Boone Counties who need help with their energy bills are encouraged to apply for LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program). LIHEAP will make a payment directly to your account with your energy companies if you qualify, or directly to renters if all energy costs are included in your rent. 

Any residents who have already received LIHEAP assistance since October, 2017 would not be eligible to apply again this season. If you have now become disconnected since you applied, additional funds may be available to you.   

LIHEAP continues through May, 2018 or until funds are exhausted.   

Handouts with application procedures are available at the City of Rockford Human Services Department, 555 N. Court St., Suite 301 in Rockford, at the Boone County United Way, 220 W. Locust St. in Belvidere and also at or call 844-710-6919 for more information.

LIHEAP is a program of the IL Dept. of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s Office of Energy Assistance funded through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and administered locally by the City of Rockford Human Services Department, A Community Action Agency.


State’s Attorney charges Chicagoan in 2017 shooting

Winnebago County State’s Attorney Joe Bruscato last week charges against a Chicago man for a deadly shooting in Rockford in July of 2017.

Shortly after 1 a.m. on  July 1, 2017, Rockford Police officers were dispatched to an address in the 3300 block of Sablewood Drive in reference to a shooting victim and located an adult male who appeared to be suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

The victim, 25 year old Adrian Jamison of Rockford, was transported to a local hospital where he was later pronounced deceased.  A subsequent autopsy found that Jamison died as a result of a gunshot wound. 

Terrell M. Wilson was charged in a 20 count Bill of Indictment that included 16 counts of First Degree Murder, one count of Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon, one count of Unlawful Use of a Weapon by a Felon, one count of Unlawful Possession of a Firearm/No FOID Card and one count of Mob Action.

Wilson is currently in custody at the Winnebago County Jail being held on $5 million bond. The defendant is scheduled to appear in front of the Honorable Judge Rosemary Collins at 9:00am on March 1st, 2018 in Courtroom 478.


SwedishAmerican hosts annual Foundation gala

The SwedishAmerican Foundation will host its annual fundraising gala on March 3 at Giovanni’s, 610 N. Bell School Road, Rockford. Swedes’ Night (formerly known as Cruise).

The theme of Swedes’ Night is “100 Years of Philanthropy,” celebrating donors have made possible over the past 100 years at SwedishAmerican Hospital. The hospital’s past will be on display, but so will the future. All proceeds from Swedes’ Night will support SwedishAmerican’s soon-to-be constructed Riverwest Clinic, located on Marchesano Drive, scheduled to open in the fall of this year.

“Change is in the air at SwedishAmerican. Cruise has sailed and now Swedes’ Night is the party to attend,” says SwedishAmerican Foundation Director Laura Wilkinson. “This is an event that helps celebrate SwedishAmerican’s past and future but it’s also an evening to celebrate our donors and sponsors who have helped us bring compassionate care to our patients and residents of northern Illinois.”

Tickets for Swedes’ Night are $125 per person, with reserved tables of 10 for $2,000. Sponsorships are also available. For more information, contact the SwedishAmerican Foundation at (779) 696-2496. 


Bill would require rear-facing car seats

A bill that would require children to ride in rear-facing car seats until age 2 could become law in Illinois. It has the support of the Illinois Senate.  The Senate Public Health Committee voted 7-0 Feb. 20 on Sen. Michael Hastings’ plan.

Hastings, a Tinley Park Democrat, says rear-facing restraints offer more protection for toddlers.

The American Academy of Pediatrics agrees, saying the seats better support a child’s head, neck and spine because the force of shell of the seat absorbs the force of collision and distributes it over the entire body.

The original draft of the bill levied a $75 fine for first-time violators. However, Democratic and Republican senators questioned the fine and got assurances from Hastings that he would change first violations to a warning.

New hotline to handle sexual harassment problems

The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) has announced the creation of a toll-free sexual harassment hotline to provide resources to the public, including referrals to counseling and legal services. The hotline, and accompanying website, will also allow for the reporting of sexual harassment allegations in both private and public places of employment.

In establishing and maintaining the hotline, IDHR enlisted the support of The Chicago Lighthouse, which provides employment opportunities to the blind, visually impaired, disabled, and veteran communities. Staff at The Chicago Lighthouse were trained by IDHR management on legal definitions of sexual harassment and resources available for reporting it, including filing of a charge of discrimination.

The Sexual Harassment Hotline Call Center can be reached Monday through Friday with the exception of state holidays between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. at (877) 236-7703. By statute, all communications received by the department via the hotline or accompanying website are confidential and exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.

For more information, visit


–Winnebago County News Briefs–