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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) - The University of Illinois says it will be spending the next year and a half re-evaluating its logos and branding, calling the effort overdue in sparking interest among recruits and fans.

The News-Gazette in Champaign reports that university officials say the review is unrelated to Chief Illiniwek.

As the university's assistant athletic director for corporate sponsorships, Marty Kaufmann says the university hasn't updated any of its brands since before 2007.

Kaufmann adds the university will work with Nike's graphic designers and marketing experts to refresh the school's look and brand, at Nike's expense. That could include tweaking a font or making the colors more consistent.

He says any changes likely won't be apparent until the fall of next year.

Kaufmann says the rebranding push won't address the mascot issue.
Monday, 04 March 2013 01:25
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) -- Greene County prosecutors will seek the death penalty against a southwest Missouri teenager charged with killing another teenager.

Gabriel Roche, 18, of Republic, is charged with first degree murder and armed criminal action in the 2011 stabbing death of 17-year-old Weston North, also of Republic. A probable cause statement says North was stabbed and then begged for his life before Roche slit his throat.

The Springfield News-Leader reports (http://sgfnow.co/15pPxQ8 ) that prosecutors have filed their intention to seek the penalty against Roche. Prosecutors say Roche killed North because North was a witness in a felony offense.

Prosecutor Dan Patterson on Friday declined to say what that offense was but earlier court documents say Roche believed North was a "snitch."
Sunday, 03 March 2013 09:06
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Ryan Villopoto took over the lead about midway through the 20-lap race and got his fourth career 450SX Class voictory in the AMA Supercross race Saturday night in front of 60,178 fans at the Edward Jones Dome.

The Kawasaki rider moved 12 points behind series leader Davi Milsaps. Suzuki's James Stewart, who won last week's event in Atlanta, finished second, followed by TwoTwo Motorsports rider Chad Reed in a race that had to be restarted after a red flag on the third lap.

"It was a crazy night out there," said Villopoto, who was fourth during the first lap. "I made a costly mistake on the first start, so I knew my work was cut out for me. I was able to make things happen on the second start and get out in front after some wild racing. It's coming down to crunch time and we were all able to make it happen tonight."

Honda's Wil Hahn won the Eastern Regional 250SX Class for the second straight week to move into the series points lead. Kawasaki's Dean Wilson finished second and fell one point behind Hahn, and Rockstar Energy Racing's Blake Wharton was third.

"That wasn't an easy race," said Hahn. "It was a tight race tonight with Blake (Wharton) pressuring me early and Dean came on strong late in the race. Tonight was awesome, and my family was here tonight to enjoy this with me."
Sunday, 03 March 2013 09:04
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) -- Authorities say a 13-month-old girl has been found safe, hours after an Amber Alert was issued for the infant who was in a car apparently stolen from a Springfield parking lot.

< The Springfield News-Leader reports the child, Harmony Blue, was in the car with an older child when the car was taken from a store parking lot Saturday afternoon. Police say the children's father left them and the keys in the car while he was in a store and briefly chased after the car on foot.

The older child was dropped off nearby and recovered by police.

Springfield police Lt. Brian Phillips says the young girl was reunited with her family Saturday evening and the car was recovered, but he declined to release details.

There was no arrest reported.
Sunday, 03 March 2013 09:01
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TROY, Mo. (AP) -- A bank robber who was caught at gunpoint by the president of the eastern Missouri bank has been sentenced to six years in prison.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the sentence was handed down Friday for 58-year-old Donald Ray Lee. He pleaded guilty last month to second-degree robbery.

Lee was wearing a Halloween mask when he robbed the People's Bank & Trust in Troy on Oct. 30. He demanded money from the teller and put his hand in his coat pocket, indicating he had a gun.

He didn't really have a weapon, but bank president David Thompson did.

Thompson grabbed his Colt .380 handgun and followed Lee o the parking lot. He held Lee at gunpoint until police arrived.

Lee had $4,779 of the bank's money.
Saturday, 02 March 2013 07:36
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ROLLA, Mo. (AP) -- The Missouri University of Science and Technology is planning a "Jeopardy!" watch party for a faculty member who landed a spot on the game show.

Ilene Morgan will make her debut on Tuesday's episode of the show. The university says the watch party is planned for 4:30 p.m. that day in the Gale Bullman Multi-Purpose Building on the Rolla campus.

Morgan is an associate professor of mathematics and statistics. She tried twice to land a spot on the program before succeeding last year. She traveled to Culver City, Calif., to compete on Oct. 29 and 30.

Morgan described her "Jeopardy!" experience as "bucket-list awesome." She said she was having fun and wasn't thinking about the audience, the camera or the prize money.
Saturday, 02 March 2013 07:35
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ST. LOUIS (AP) — A man is in custody in St. Louis, accused of beating his girlfriend to death with a baseball bat.

Police say the crime happened Thursday evening. The 71-year-old suspect's name has not been released.

Police say the man was arguing with his girlfriend, 54-year-old Carolyn Richardson, then struck her in the head several times with the bat. Richardson was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Saturday, 02 March 2013 07:33
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A Swansea, Illinois woman found dead in her apartment Friday was killed by someone she knew. That's according to police who day the body of 50-year-old Carmen Boyd was found by her landlord.

That's according to police who day the body of 50-year-old Carmen Boyd was found by her landlord. Police arrested 37-year-old Kristofer McDavid Saturday. A day later, the St. Clair County prosecutor charged McDavid with first-degree murder.

Captain Jeff Wild, deputy commander of the Major Case Squad said Boyd and McDavid were acquaintances."It was not random. There's no randomness to this whatsoever. I would just leave it that it was a confrontation that led to the untimely death of our victim."

Police aren't sharing many details about the murder, but court records indicate that Boyd was stabbed. McDavid's bail has been set at five-million dollars.

Swansea Police Chief Mike Arnold says this was the first homicide in the metro-east community since 2006.
Monday, 04 March 2013 06:00
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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois House has approved a measure that would prohibit using cell phones while driving.

The 64-46 vote Friday moves the bill to the state Senate for consideration. The measure would force drivers to use hands-free devices or use speakerphone features for calls.

Police would be able to stop and ticket drivers holding a cell phone except during emergency situations. Chicago Democrat Rep. John D'Amico (duh-MEE'-koh) says 76 Illinois communities -- including Chicago -- already ban talking on phones and driving.

Opponents say the bill is unfair to individuals with hearing problems and those who cannot afford high-tech phones. D'Amico touted his measure as a public-safety matter.

Texting while driving is already illegal in Illinois.
Friday, 01 March 2013 16:26
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The Edwardsville man convicted of molesting two young relatives in 2008, will spend the rest of his natural life in prison.

Michael Burgund of Edwardsville told turned himself into police and said he assaulted the girls, aged two and three in 2011, but later withdrew that confession. This was the mandatory minimum penalty based on the number and types of charges Burgund faced.
Friday, 01 March 2013 14:42
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