<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Chicago News]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.comen-usSun, 01 May 2016 22:42:34 -0500Sun, 01 May 2016 22:42:34 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Family Searches for Clues in Mysterious Disappearance of Medical Student]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 21:42:09 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/ambrose+monye+0428.jpg

Ambrose Monye is a medical student at a university in Guadalajara, Mexico, set to graduate in just a few weeks. Now, family and friends are searching frantically after the 28-year-old mysteriously disappeared. 

"His tickets to graduation are already bought for the ceremony, everything. Cap and gown already fitted, all the pictures taken," said younger brother Joseph Monye, also a medical student. "He's four weeks away from graduation and having a license as a medical doctor."

Joseph last heard from Ambrose on April 21, and he said nothing was amiss. Ambrose was last seen walking towards the University of Chicago's John Crerar Medical Library, planning to study. The fourth-year medical student was about to complete his rotations at Jackson Park Hospital. 

"We don't have any hints, clues or anything. It's like he disappeared into thin air," said Joseph. "Nobody knows were he went to or anything like that."

Joseph said there were fresh groceries in the refridgerator at Ambrose's Hyde Park apartment, where the air conditioning and a reading lamp were both left on. 

There has been no activity from his cell phone, credit card, or email since Ambrose disappeared. He wears reading glasses and carries a green backpack, his brother said. 

"I'm literally scared out of my mind. I have no idea what to do," said Joseph, adding, "This is the best time of his life right now. He should be celebrating and we are looking for him."

Joseph said the Monye family is seeking access to surveillance cameras at the library and his apartment building. Anyone with information is asked to contact the police. 

Photo Credit: Joseph Monye]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Release Matt Slauson and Antrel Rolle]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 19:21:23 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/slauson+rolle+0501.jpg

The Chicago Bears have added plenty of new faces this weekend, but those acquisitions mean saying goodbye to a couple of veteran pieces.

On Sunday afternoon, the Bears officially released safety Antrel Rolle and offensive guard Matt Slauson from their contracts. The Bears drafted players at both positions during this weekend’s NFL Draft, with Deon Bush and Deiondre’ Hall getting selected at safety and Cody Whitehair at guard.

“We thank Matt and Antrel for the dedication and leadership they brought to our organization,” Bears G.M. Ryan Pace said in a statement. “Both men did everything we asked of them. Part of growing as a team is making difficult decisions like the ones we made today. We never take them lightly given the respect we have for everyone who has put on a Bears uniform. We wish each of them the very best as they move forward.”

Rolle played in seven games for the Bears during the 2015 season, his first with the club. He registered 30 tackles and one pass defended on the campaign.

Slauson has been with the Bears for the last three seasons, playing at both left guard and center for the Bears in his career. He started in all 16 games the team played in 2015 after missing 11 games during the 2014 campaign. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Chicago Boy Who Asked for Birthday Cards Passes Away]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 19:01:26 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Lucas+Bear.png

The young boy battling incurable cancer whose request for birthday cards was shared around the world passed away Sunday, according to his family. 

Lucas "Bear" Cervone would have turned 6 in just under a week, and hundreds of people joined in the effort to fulfill his request for cards for his birthday on May 7. 

In a Facebook post Sunday, the Cervone family asked for privacy, writing, "At 506pm CST, Lucas BEAR took his last breath. He is cancer free and no longer in pain."

Lucas was first diagnosed with pediatric leukemia in August 2012. 

"He fought through three very long years and very intensive years of treatment and he won, he beat it," said Lucas' father, Anthony Cervone, in an interview this week.

But a short time later, he was diagnosed with another form of cancer, this one incurable. After a stem cell transplant in November 2015 and months in the hospital overcoming viruses, Lucas returned home to celebrate Christmas with his older brother, Franco, in February.

Then, just a few weeks ago, the Cervone family received the news it had been dreading: doctors found an incurable tumor near Lucas' heart.

"It has been decided that there are no further curative options," the family wrote April 25 on a Facebook page set up to support Lucas. "In simplest terms, there is nothing more we can do to fight this. We have started palliative chemo to attempt to slow the growth of the tumor. The tumor is wrapped around the pulmonary artery and is pressing on Lucas' heart."

The Cervone family then focused on making Lucas' remaining days his happiest. 

"I want him to have the best quality of life I can give him until the end," his father said at the time

Lucas loved to read cards and received 500 letters from well-wishers for Christmas. His family reached out to supporters to try and surpass that number of his birthday. 

That call was heard around the world, with hundreds of people, including 'Modern Family' star Ariel Winter, joining in to send cards to Lucas. 

"He's my hero," said his mother, Rina Cervone. "I don't think I could ever be as strong as him."

"What we want to show him is his family will be here with him, as well as everyone else," Anthony Cervone added.

Photo Credit: Lucas Bear Heroes
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<![CDATA[Illinois Woman Sues Starbucks Over Too Much Ice]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 17:41:41 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/522435114-starbucks-lawsuit.jpg

An Illinois woman is suing Starbucks for $5 million over the amount of ice the coffee giant used in its iced drinks, NBC News reports.

Stacy Pincus filed the class action lawsuit against Starbucks Corp. in Northern Illinois Federal Court Wednesday, according to court documents.

Pincus' suit says customers often end up with half of the amount of drink listed on Starbucks menus because of the amount of ice used in the iced beverages. The suit alleges that Starbucks is purposefully tricking customers into paying for more product than what they are provided with.

Starbucks did not immediately respond to a request for comment made by NBC News on Sunday, but told told TMZ customers expect ice is "an essential component of" iced beverages.

Photo Credit: Getty Images, file]]>
<![CDATA[Obamas Announce Daughter Malia's College Decision ]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 11:12:44 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/180*120/498724342.jpg

President Barack Obama's daughter Malia will take a year off after high school and attend Harvard University in 2017, the White House announced Sunday.

Malia is the eldest of the Obamas' two daughters. She's 17 and a senior at the exclusive Sidwell Friends School in the District of Columbia.

She's set to graduate high school in June, then celebrate her 18th birthday on the Fourth of July.

Obama recently said he turned down an invitation to speak at Malia's high school graduation because his emotions would get the best of him.

Malia visited at least a dozen public and private colleges during her search, mostly on the East Coast.

Among them are six of the eight Ivies and a few with Obama family ties.

The president is a 1983 graduate of Columbia. The first lady graduated from Princeton in 1985. Malia's cousin, Leslie Robinson, is a sophomore forward on Princeton's women's basketball team. The president and first lady earned their law degrees at Harvard.

Mrs. Obama has said Malia wants to be a filmmaker, and many thought she would enroll at NYU's respected Tisch School of the Arts, which counts directors Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee among its alumni.

Malia spent last summer in New York City interning on the set of HBO's "Girls," the raunchy comedy-drama starring Lena Dunham. She decamped to California in the summer of 2014 to work as a production assistant on "Extant," a CBS sci-fi drama featuring Halle Berry.

<![CDATA[First-Ever Hotel to Be Built at Navy Pier]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 07:54:56 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Navy+Pier+Hotel+0501.jpg

Navy Pier is getting its first-ever hotel. 

Navy Pier and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced the new project on Sunday, detailing plans to build a hotel on the east end of the iconic Streeterville landmark near Festival Hall.

The hotel will have five floors, more than 200 guest rooms, and will overlook Lake Michigan and the pier's South Dock, according to a release. 

“As we continue to reimagine the Pier for its centennial and beyond, we are thrilled with the prospect of a hotel to further enhance the Navy Pier experience,” Navy Pier President and CEO Marilynn Gardner said in a statement. “The hotel will provide a unique place to stay in Chicago year round – not to mention breathtaking and unparalleled views of the Pier, lake and city.”

Construction will begin on the hotel in 2017, and is expected to create 300 construction jobs and 200 permanent jobs, the release said. 

First Hospitality Group will oversee the development, which will be designed by architect Jackie Koo, who has designed several other properties including the Wit hotel. The project will cost an estimated $90 million, and is privately financed, according to the release. 

The hotel is part of the multi-million dollar "Centennial Vision" redevelopment project for Navy Pier approved in 2013, aimed at drawing more tourists and trade shows to Chicago.

The project also includes the new, taller Ferris wheel that opens to the public on May 27, kicking off Navy Pier's centennial celebration.

Photo Credit: First Hospitality Group]]>
<![CDATA[Chicago’s Chance the Rapper Teases New Mixtape]]> Sun, 01 May 2016 00:31:57 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Chance+the+Rapper.jpg

Three years to the day after he released his second mixtape "Acid Rap," Chicago's Chance the Rapper teased the release of new music on Saturday. 

The Chatham native shared a picture of his upcoming album's cover art on several social media platforms, with a link to his website where fans can purchase posters of the album cover in packs of 10 for $20.

The rapper also posted about an upcoming appearance on"'The Tonight Show,"sharing a photo of Jimmy Fallon doing a Justin Bieber impression, with the caption "Hey Jimmy Fallon, see you thurs."

Three weeks ago, Chance the Rapper debuted a music video for his most recent single "Angels," which shows him riding on top of a CTA train in Chicago. 

Many have speculated about when Chance the Rapper, who remains unsigned to a music label, would release new music, particularly after a guest verse on Kanye West's album "The Life of Pablo." In the song "Ultra Light Beam," Chance the Rapper referenced "Chance 3" and even performed with West on "Saturday Night Live" in February. 

That performance was his second time on "SNL," after he was reportedly the first independent artist to ever perform on the show in December 2015, according to The Chicago Tribune.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Bears Sign Sommers, Robertson-Harris to Deals]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 19:34:29 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/bears+fan+GettyImages-155474147.jpg

The Chicago Bears didn’t waste any time after the NFL Draft was over to begin signing undrafted free agents, inking Joe Sommers and Roy Robertson-Harris to contracts.

Sommers, a tight end at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, had 41 receptions for 669 yards and three touchdowns this season. The Bears are looking for extra tight ends after trading away Martellus Bennett this offseason, and they could be looking to address the position after they didn’t take any tight ends during the draft over the weekend.

The Bears also brought in Robertson-Harris, who was projected by many to be a fourth or fifth round pick. The University of Texas-El Paso product is an athletic defensive end with a lot of explosiveness against the run, and while he’s likely not a three-down defensive end, he could be a disruptive player for the Bears on the defensive side of the ball.

Update: Cornerback Kevin Peterson was also signed to a deal with the Bears, as the Oklahoma State product will look to bolster a weak position for Chicago. He's on the short side at 5-foot-10, but he has been praised for his football IQ and ran a solid 4.56 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine. 

The Bears have also signed tight end Ben Braunecker out of Harvard and linebacker Don Cherry from Villanova. Reports are also out that the team has agreed to deals with three offensive tackles, with Dan Bucholz (Duquense), Adrian Bellard (Texas State), and John Kling (Buffalo) all in the mix, as is cornerback Taveze Calhoune from Mississippi State. 

Finally, wide receiver Darrin Peterson is also rumored to have signed a contract with the Bears, according to Aaron Wilson. 

Braunecker is a physically imposing tight end with a mean streak and solid blocking ability, but he isn't a very good pass catcher and the Bears would likely keep him around only if he can fill the role of extra blocker on short yardage and goal line plays. 

Peterson, a wide receiver out of Liberty University, had 68 receptions and seven touchdowns in his final season at the school. In 2014, he played in 14 games, hauling in 85 catches for 1379 yards and a dozen touchdowns. 

Calhoune was a solid producer at Mississippi State, with 27 passes defended in his career with the Bulldogs. He also had an interception and 53 tackles in his junior season, with nine pass breakups to his credit. 

Several Bears players thrived as undrafted free agents a season ago, including Cameron Meredith, Jonathan Anderson, and John Timu. Meredith had 11 catches for the Bears in 2015, with Timu appearing in seven games and registering 24 tackles. Anderson played in 11 games with the Bears, with 36 tackles and an interception to his credit. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Sign Brian Hoyer to 1-Year Contract]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 18:41:09 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/brian+hoyer+GettyImages-503288292.jpg

The Chicago Bears did not draft a quarterback in the 2016 NFL Draft, but the team has still added a new back-up to the mix, as G.M. Ryan Pace confirmed that they have signed veteran Brian Hoyer to a 1-year deal.

The deal was first reported by multiple outlets, including Adam Schefter from ESPN and Brad Biggs from the Chicago Tribune.

The Bears, who still have Matt Blanchard and David Fales on the roster as potential back-ups for Jay Cutler, will instead give Hoyer an opportunity to take over the role in the 2016 campaign. Hoyer spent the 2015 season with the Houston Texans, starting in nine games and completing 60.7 percent of his passes. He threw 19 touchdowns and seven interceptions for the Texans, who won the AFC South championship before being eliminated in the wild card round of the postseason.

Many draft experts thought that the Bears would draft a quarterback, especially with Cutler’s guaranteed money set to come off the books after the 2016 season. Instead, the Bears focused on other needs on defense, and they will try to go through the season with the veteran Hoyer on the roster instead of a draft pick. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[DePaul Student Sexually Assaulted, Robbed Near Loop Campus: Safety Alert]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 17:15:45 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/DePaul.png

A DePaul student was sexually assaulted and robbed near the Loop Campus Friday night, according to a public safety alert sent by the university on Saturday. 

The student was walking near Congress and Wabash at approximately 10:30 p.m., according to the alert. He was approached from behind and incapacitated with a noxious substance on a cloth, the alert said, then dragged into an SUV.

The student was then sexually assaulted and robbed, but was able to escape the vehicle before the offenders fled in an unknown direction. 

Chicago Police could not immediately confirm the incident. 

Photo Credit: cnprod/Instagram]]>
<![CDATA[Chicago Bears Draft Grades: 2016 Edition]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 17:28:57 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/bears+draft+grades+0430.jpg

The Chicago Bears went into this weekend’s NFL Draft in desperate need of improvement at countless positions on the field, and they’ve certainly cast a very wide net in terms of grabbing a slew of talented players.

While all of the hallmarks of Ryan Pace’s approach are on display, including arm length, explosiveness, and high production at the collegiate level, he’s also made some interesting decisions that could have a serious impact on the team’s roster for 2016 and beyond.

With that in mind, we’ve graded each of the Bears’ 2016 draft picks, and explained what they’re going to bring to the table as they begin their NFL careers.

Round 1, Pick 9: Leonard Floyd, Linebacker – Georgia

Grade: B-

Giving Floyd a lower grade than any other pick the Bears have made may seem harsh, but when a team trades up to grab a player, you have to anticipate that he’s going to be an instant difference maker on the field, and there are arguments to be made that Floyd doesn’t fit that profile for the Bears.

Sure, he’s a very athletic, long player that can close out space and make plays, but he also has limited potential in terms of getting stronger or becoming an elite linebacker. He doesn’t profile as a three-down linebacker right away, and although he could develop into one, that’s not the kind of thing that you want from a top-10 pick in the draft.

With all of that being said, Pace did a very nice job last season of evaluating draft talent, and he has earned the benefit of the doubt, especially with the rest of the draft class in mind.

Round 2, Pick 56: Cody Whitehair, Offensive Guard – Kansas State

Grade: B+

The Bears’ offensive line already seemed pretty well set, with the addition of guys like Manny Ramirez and Bobby Massie to the roster, but they still used a very high draft pick to address an issue, as they bring Whitehair aboard.

The question isn’t necessarily what he’ll bring to the table (where he’ll likely play as a guard), but what the selection means for the future of both Matt Slauson and Hroniss Grasu. Will the Bears trade Slauson, or are they anticipating moving him to center and giving Grasu more time to gain strength and improve his technique at the position?

They could also move Kyle Long back out to tackle and have Whitehair play the guard position, but that doesn’t seem like an ideal scenario for Chicago.

Round 3, Pick 72: Jonathan Bullard, Defensive End – Florida

Grade: A

Watching game film of Bullard indicates that he should have probably been a second round pick for the Bears. He is a remarkable athlete with a lot of versatility on the defensive line, and he’ll certainly be able to add an athletic element to the Bears as they try to solidify the ends of their line up.

Pro Football Focus named him the best pick of the second day of the draft, praising the Bears for selecting him. He isn’t the most explosive player, but he is quick around the line of scrimmage and has a knack for slapping away hands and shedding blocks.

Round 4, Pick 113: Nick Kwiatkoski, Linebacker – West Virginia

Grade: B

The Bears have focused a lot of resources on improving at the middle linebacker position during this offseason, adding Jerrell Freeman and Danny Trevathan at the position. Kwiatkoski gives them another young option at the position, and he’ll come in from the Mountaineers’ defense looking to make an impact on defense and on special teams.

He is a very solid tackler, and while he isn’t the most athletically-gifted player in the draft, he’s a hard worker that should fit in very well with the team’s culture in Chicago.

Round 4, Pick 124: Deon Bush, Safety – Miami

Grade: B

If Bears fans wanted a hard hitter, then they certainly found one in Bush. In highlight packages on YouTube, Bush routinely makes monstrous hits over the middle of the field, and even though he isn’t the most sure-handed tackler in the draft, the Bears certainly view him as a similar talent to Adrian Amos at the safety spot.

According to scouting reports, Bush will need to work hard on his ability to diagnose plays off the snap. Fortunately for him, he works out in the offseason with Bears safety Antrel Rolle, and he’s looking forward to working with his fellow Hurricanes alum at the next level.

Round 4, Pick 127: Deiondre’ Hall, Safety – Northern Iowa

Grade: B+

Pace and company love players with long arms, and Hall’s are incredibly long, measuring in at 34 and 3/8ths inches. That is one inch longer than Kyle Long’s arms, and that length gives him the unique ability to force turnovers and wrap up tackles in space at the safety position.

In his post-draft interview, Hall said that he models his game after Charles Tillman, and if he can provide that style of production, then Vic Fangio is absolutely going to love him. The Bears have been looking for playmakers in space, and adding a player that can take reps along with Adrian Amos could be a huge boost to a secondary in desperate need of one.

Round 5, Pick 150: Jordan Howard, Running Back – Indiana

Grade: A

The Bears already have a lot of running backs on their roster, with Jeremy Langford, Ka’Deem Carey, and Jacquizz Rodgers all already in the mix, but Howard gives the Bears something they were sorely lacking last year: a really good third down and short yardage option out of the backfield.

Watching film of Howard reveals exactly what the Bears are hoping for out of him: a vicious runner that hits opponents hard, gets extra yards with his strength and nose for gaps in the line of scrimmage, and, most notably, a guy that can actually catch the ball out of the backfield.

He is a third or fourth round talent that the Bears managed to grab in the fifth round, and fans should be thrilled with his selection.

Round 6, Pick 185: DeAndre Houston-Carson, Safety – William & Mary

Grade: A-

When picking this late in the draft, teams are looking for two things: versatility and an ability to play special teams. Houston-Carson fills both of those roles, and he has the game that the Bears are looking for in their players. He has long arms, an insatiable work ethic, and is willing to do the nitty-gritty work involved with playing on the special teams unit.

With the way this team has struggled in that area the last several seasons, adding a good player like Houston-Carson is certainly the way to go.

Round 7, Pick 230: Daniel Braverman, Wide Receiver - Western Michigan

Grade: B+

The Bears already have a really solid slot receiver type in Marc Mariani, but Braverman could give them another option there if they choose to utilize him in that fashion. He's got decent speed, but he doesn't have much size and isn't exactly a downfield threat. Should be interested to see what Dowell Loggains has in mind for him. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Man Killed in Suburban Crash Identified as CPS Teacher]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 23:00:22 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/komada+tristate+desplaines+crash+0430.jpg

The man killed in a four-vehicle crash Saturday morning in the northwest suburbs was identified as a longtime teacher at a Chicago Public School on the Northwest Side, according to the school's principal. 

Jeffery Komada, 54, of Des Plaines, was the Director of Technology at William Howard Taft High School for close to 30 years, according to a statement from Principal Mark Garbisher. 

"He was an esteemed colleague and he was a friend to everyone in the building. Last year he was one one of our teachers who was Educator of the Year," said Garbisher. "He was one of the kindest people I have ever met. He will be missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family."

Grishaber said Komada was responsible for all technology at Taft, all laptops, computer labs, databases, as well as in charge of all PARCC testing. 

The accident occurred on southbound I-294 in Des Plaines at 10:08 a.m., according to a release from the Illinois State Police. 

Officials said a Ford Windstar minivan stalled in traffic at mile post 41-1/2 between Touhy and Devon Avenues, which caused Komada's car, a Honda CR-V, to rear-end the van. A Volkwagen Tiguan then rear-ended the Honda, according to the release. 

The 38-year-old woman driving the Volkswagen and a 4-year-old girl who was her passenger “relocated to the back seat of the Honda” after the crash, police said. Komada was helping the woman and child get into his vehicle to move to the shoulder, according to the Chicago Sun-Times

Komada was standing outside his car when a Peterbuilt semi-truck approached and struck him, the Volkwagen, and the Honda, according to the statement. He was taken to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, where he was pronounced dead, according to police. 

It was not immediately clear if there were any other injuries, or if any citations have been issued in connection with the crash. 

Photo Credit: Mark Grishaber]]>
<![CDATA[Police Release Photos of Suspects Wanted in CTA Attack]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 22:50:35 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/cta+attack+suspects+0430.jpg

Police have released photos of two suspects wanted in a brutal attack on a college student riding the Blue Line this week. 

Police say a man and woman approached the victim and attempted to take her cell phone by punching her with closed fists, according to a release from the Chicago Police Department. One offender also bit the victim in the hand. 

The first offender is described as a black male, approximately 25-35 years old, 6' and 180 pounds, with black hair and wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt. The second offender is a black female, approximately 18-25 years old, 5'6" tall and approximately 120 pounds. She was wearing a dark-colored 'Aeropostale' sweatshirt and black pants. 

A 19-year-old freshman at DePaul University, Jessica Hughes said she was simply returning home from a morning class when the two people attacked her for her iPhone, all while witnesses sat and watched. 

She said she suffered a black eye, a broken nose and bite marks in the attack.

“He grabs me, pushes me to the floor, and he started beating on my head repeatedly,” she said. “He grabs my hand, looks me in the eye and bites my hand.”

According to Hughes, the woman joined the attack, breaking her nose. Two men were also in the train car with her, she said, but they simply watched the attack happen. 

“He kept beating me,” she said. “I yelled for help and no one came.”

Police ask anyone with information about the attack or these two suspects to contact Area North detectives at 312-744-8263

Photo Credit: Chicago Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[17 Arrested After Protest Stops Traffic on Lake Shore Drive]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 18:02:41 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/rekiaboydprotest0430.jpg

17 people were arrested at a protest on Lake Shore Drive Saturday afternoon, according to Chicago Police. 

Protesters blocked traffic in both directions at Jackson Blvd at around 12 p.m. Saturday, calling for a financial commitment to Chicago State University and the firing of a Chicago Police officer who fatally shot an unarmed woman in 2012. 

Chicago State University laid off more than 300 employees Friday night amid continuing financial woes caused by the state budget impasse. 

Chicago police officer Dante Servin, who shot and killed 22-year-old Rekia Boyd in March 2012, was acquitted by a judge in 2015 of charges of involuntary manslaughter.

"Decision makers at the local and state levels have made it clear where their financial priorities lie. We continue to receive cuts to the institutions that keep Black women safe--institutions that continue to be replaced by terrorist cops who brutalize and murder Black women without penalty," read a statement from groups organizing the protest, including Assata’s Daughters and Black Lives Matter: Chicago. 

Participants blocked Lake Shore Drive in an effort to disrupt the NFL Draft's events. Organizers said the protest was specifically made up of mostly black women. 

The Chicago Police Department said approximately fifty people participated in the protest to disrupt traffic, which reopened shortly before 1 p.m. No injuries were reported.

Photo Credit: Assata's Daughters]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Select Six New Players on Final Day of NFL Draft]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 17:15:50 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Chicago+Bears+Fan.jpg

The Chicago Bears came into day three of the NFL Draft with seven picks, including three fourth round selections, but they couldn't wait to get things started, as they traded up in the fourth round to grab linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski out of West Virginia. 

The Bears made a trade to move up four spots to get the selection, sending the 117th overall pick and a sixth round pick (the selection they acquired from the Carolina Panthers in the Jared Allen trade) to the Los Angeles Rams for the selection. 

During his collegiate career, Kwiatkoski had 303 tackles and six interceptions, and he also had 10 tackles for loss during his final season with the Mountaineers. He'll likely play select downs at inside linebacker, spelling Danny Trevathan and Jerrell Freeman in the Bears' 3-4 defense. 

Later in the fourth round, the Bears made their second selection of the day, taking safety Deon Bush out of the University of Miami. A great 40-time at the Combine pushed him up some draft boards, but concerns about his ability to diagnose plays off the snap also caused some teams to hesitate on taking him. 

Just a few picks later, the Bears selected another safety off the board, picking Deiondre' Hall out of Northern Iowa. According to his NFL.com profile, he's known for his long reach and his intelligence on the field, and he also set a new school record for "pick sixes" in his career as he returned four interceptions for touchdowns. 

In the fifth round, the Bears addresesd their offensive needs as they snagged another Big Ten running back for their back field. Jordan Howard, a powerful back that will likely be used in short yardage situations, will join the Bears out of Indiana, as they pick a mid-round back out of a Big Ten school for the second consecutive draft (they drafted Michigan State product Jeremy Langford in the fourth round in 2015). 

DeAndre Houston-Carson, a safety out of William & Mary, was the Bears' selection in the sixth round of the draft. Largely a special teams ace, he can also play both safety and corner for the Bears, and he could be a player that turns some heads in training camp this summer. 

The Bears grabbed another steal in the seventh round as they selected wide receiver Daniel Braverman. The receiver led the nation in receiving yards in the slot this season, and he provides a dynamic, speedy option at wideout that some scouts thought warranted a third or fourth round draft selection. 

With the draft complete, the Bears will join the 31 other NFL teams in trying to scoop up talented players from among those that were undrafted. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[NBC 5 Volunteers for Comcast Cares Day]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 11:34:33 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/160*120/11a83e9c04d0432397856cb7635c19e8.JPG.jpg The NBC 5 family is out and about in Chicago, volunteering in the community in honor of #ComcastCaresDay. Volunteers helped paint at Charles G. Woodson Elementary School on Chicago's South Side on Saturday.

Photo Credit: Stephanie]]>
<![CDATA[Cubs Game Postponed Due to Weather Concerns]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 10:39:24 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/178*120/GettyImages-520519552.jpg

Saturday's Cubs game against the Atlanta Braves at Wrigley Field was postponed due to concerns about the forecast for inclement weather, according to a release from the team.

A make-up date for the game has not been set, but fans are encouraged to hold onto their tickets to use for the re-scheduled game.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Chicago State University Lays Off More than 300 Employees: Report]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 23:23:59 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/csu.png

Amid the continuing state budget crisis, hard-hit Chicago State University laid off more than 300 employees Friday evening, according to the Chicago Tribune

The layoffs are wide-ranging, from administrators to maintenance workers, with about 1/3 of the roughly 900 employees impacted, the Tribune reports. No faculty members were affected in Friday's layoffs, but CSU has not ruled that option out in future cuts. 

"It's not going to really be able to service the community in the way that it should be able to," former nursing student advisor Saleemah Ali said, having experienced her own layoff at the outset of the budget crisis. 

Chicago State University was one of the hardest-hit schools in the state by the budget crisis, forced to cancel spring break and move commencement ceremonies up to Thursday of this week. 

The huge staff cuts come despite a $20 million infusion from the state just last week after a full academic year of no state funding while lawmakers continued to negotiate a budget deal.

“While appreciative and supportive of the emergency funding, limited allocation by the state will still require CSU to make difficult cost-cutting decisions moving forward, including additional workforce reductions,” a statement from CSU read after the stop-gap funding measure passed. 

Enrollment decline is expected. 

<![CDATA[Owner of Tanning Salon Faces Charges in Third Rape Case]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 15:58:19 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/209*120/Marc+Winner.jpg

Marc Winner, the owner of a tanning salon in Chicago’s West Loop, has been charged in a third rape case, according to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office.

Winner, 45, was recently charged with three felony counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

Winner, who owns Soleil Tanning Salon, faced previous sexual assault charges for incidents in 2013 and 2015 as well, according to records. 

He was accused of sexually assaulting one of his customers in October 2015 after prosecutors said he allegedly took a woman to his West Loop apartment, held her down and assaulted her. 

Winner was charged in November 2015 with 20 felony counts of aggravated kidnapping, aggravated criminal assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, aggravated battery by strangulation and unlawful restraint. 

He also faced criminal sexual assault charges in 2013, though a judge at the time found no probable cause and dismissed the case.

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, however, says there are currently three active rape cases against Winner. 

Winner's attorney Steven Weinberg, said he plans to "try our case in the courtroom."

"We are going to wait for our opportunity to try our case in the courtroom," Weinberg said in a statement. "We do not convict people based on the quantity of witnesses, but based on the quality of evidence. When these cases are tried in the courtroom, you will see that the evidence will come out and Mr. Winner's favor."

One woman, Leslie Barton, who once lived in Glenview, also accused Winner of assaulting her in 2001, when she was 36 years old.

According to a police report, Barton told authorities she was attacked by Winner while inside a tanning salon in Glenview, where she believed Winner worked at the time.

Barton said inside one of the tanning rooms, Winner “picked her up and threw her backwards and down onto a tanning bed causing her to strike her head and back on the bed.”

After that, Barton attempted to get off the bed, but Winner grabbed her around her throat and started choking her, slamming her head onto the bed, the report states.

"He grabbed me and said you're not going anywhere," Barton said. "I kept saying 'I don't want this' and then he starts strangling me."

After that, Winner allegedly pulled down Barton’s pants and raped her, the report states.

Winner was ultimately charged with battery in 2001 and sentenced to supervision, Barton said.

"I screamed it from the rooftops no one listened, and to hear this come out 15 years later?" Barton asked. "This horrible person, this monster, fell through the cracks over and over again."

Further details on the latest charges weren’t immediately known. Winner is expected to appear in bond court Saturday.

Photo Credit: Cook County Sheriff's Office]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Select Whitehair, Bullard on Draft's Second Day]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 21:03:17 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Bears2.png

The Chicago Bears traded down twice in the second round on Friday night at the NFL Draft, but they finally ended up making a selection as they picked offensive guard Cody Whitehair out of Kansas State.

Whitehair, who was originally projected as a late first round pick, will provide instant competition on the Bears’ offensive line, with rumors swirling that the team could be looking to move players like Matt Slauson in a trade.

Whitehair could also conceviably be in play for the left tackle spot, although his game is better suited for the guard position. 

The Bears did make their third round pick without making any trades, selecting defensive end Jon Bullard out of the University of Florida. Bullard, who was projected as a second-to-third round player, had six and a half sacks and 63 tackles for the Gators during his final season in Gainesville. 

The Bears originally held the 10th pick of the second round on Friday, but they sent it to the Buffalo Bills in a deal that sent the 49th overall pick and two fourth round picks back to Chicago. The Bills ultimately used that pick on Alabama linebacker Reggie Ragland.

The Bears then made another trade with the 49th pick, sending it to the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for the 56th pick and another fourth round pick. The Seahawks used the pick to select nose tackle Jarran Reed out of the University of Alabama.

Several players the Bears could have potentially taken with the pick were swiped off the board before their selection came up. Kevin Dodd, defensive end from Clemson, was selected by the Tennessee Titans, and Hunter Henry, tight end from Arkansas, was scooped up by the San Diego Chargers early in the second round.

A pair of injured, high ceiling linebackers also went off the board quickly, as the Dallas Cowboys snagged Jaylon Smith out of Notre Dame and the Jacksonville Jaguars traded up to draft Myles Jack out of UCLA.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Police Warn of North Side Alleyway Garbage Fires]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 20:41:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lakeview+fires+042916.jpg

Police are warning North Side residents after six fires were set in several Lincoln Park and Lake View alleyways over the course of an hour early Monday morning. 

Police say the fires were started in garbage cans, and in some cases spread to nearby garages.

The fires occurred at:

  • 4:28 a.m. in the 2800 block of North Cambridge
  • 5:04 a.m. in the 1100 block of West Oakdale
  • 5:09 a.m. in the 2900 block of North Seminary
  • 5:16 a.m. in the 700 block of West Oakdale
  • 5:24 a.m. in the 1100 block of West Wolfram
  • 5:28 a.m. in the 2700 block of North Racine

Many residents were shocked to hear it was arson, thinking it was lightning strikes or some sort of accident in the normally quiet neighborhoods.

"I'm very, very surprised. And I really thought that that was an accident," said resident Hannele Delorme. "I don't understand who could do that, and why."

While neighbors said most of the damage was contained to either the trash or recycling bins themselves, some said the Wolfram fire came dangerously close to a parked car.

Police are asking area residents to spread the word about what happened, and to only leave out bulky items on designated pick-up days. They also ask that anyone with surveillance footage or information on the fires contact the police.

<![CDATA[Toy Store Grants Ailing 4-Year-Old Suburban Boy's Birthday Wish]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 18:46:16 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/226*120/mad+make+a+wish.png A giant toy store chain is making a difference in the life of an ailing 4-year-old suburban boy, giving him a once-in-a-lifetime birthday party. Emily Florez reports.]]> <![CDATA[Things to Do in the Chicago Area This Weekend: April 29-May 1]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 20:31:32 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/chicago+flag+skyline.jpg From Chicago sports to the Chicago eats, here are 10 things to do this weekend in and around the city.]]> <![CDATA['Modern Family' Star Asks Fans to Write to Boy Battling Cancer]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 23:54:19 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lucas+bear+2.JPG

Hundreds of birthday cards have poured in over the last few days for Lucas "Bear" Cervone, the 5-year-old Chicago boy battling incurable cancer. Now, one celebrity has joined in on sending the young boy a special greeting for his birthday on May 7. 

"Modern Family" star Ariel Winter posted on both her Instagram and Twitter accounts Friday, encouraging her fans to send mail to Lucas. 

"Let's use the power of the Internet for good today, spread the word & help give Lucas the best birthday by sending him well wishes," Winter wrote. 

Commenters from all over the world chimed in to support Lucas, who lives in the Belmont-Cragin neighborhood. Fans from India, Norway, Canada, Sweden, and more, all shared well-wishes and said they were sending cards. Winter commented later to thank everyone for their support. 

"Love everyone's response here! This is amazing! Yes everyone send him a birthday card," she wrote.

Lucas was first diagnosed with pediatric leukemia in August 2012.

"He fought through three very long years and very intensive years of treatment and he won, he beat it," said Lucas' father, Anthony Cervone.

But a short time later, he was diagnosed with another form of cancer, this one incurable. After a stem cell transplant in November 2015 and months in the hospital overcoming viruses, Lucas finally returned home, celebrating Christmas in February with his older brother, Franco.

Then, just a few weeks ago, the Cervone family received the news it had been dreading: doctors found an incurable tumor near Lucas' heart. 

"It has been decided that there are no further curative options," the family wrote Monday. "In simplest terms, there is nothing more we can do to fight this. We have started palliative chemo to attempt to slow the growth of the tumor. The tumor is wrapped around the pulmonary artery and is pressing on Lucas' heart."

The family asked for birthday cards to help make Lucas' sixth birthday very special, saying he loves to receive them and they wanted to surpass his 500-card record set on Christmas. Since they shared Lucas' story, cards have poured in. 

And while the family said they appreciate the support for their little boy, they have also asked for privacy and that anyone who wanted to donate more than cards instead donate to some of the many organizations that have helped the family through their difficult journey. (See the list here)

Letters and cards can be sent to:

Lucas Bear Heroes or Lucas Bear
40 E. Chicago Ave., No. 162
Chicago, IL 60611

Photo Credit: Lucas Bear Heroes
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<![CDATA[Death of Chicago Bartender Run Over by Cab Ruled a Homicide]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 17:46:43 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/208*120/gaines+surveillance.png

WARNING: Video footage in this story may be disturbing for some. To view the video on the app click here.

The death of popular Chicago bartender, who was beaten unconscious then run over by a taxi cab in a downtown Chicago crosswalk all while witnesses stood by and watched, has been ruled a homicide. 

The Cook County Medical Examiner's office said Marques Gaines died from multiple blunt force injuries, from an automobile striking him on the street and from assault. 

The cause of death follows the release of surveillance video showing someone attacking Gaines outside a 7-Eleven store moments before he is left unconscious in the street and later run over by a taxi.

In the video, Gaines is seen being punched and knocked unconscious at about 4:20 a.m. on February 7 outside the store in the 400 block of North State Street. Within a few seconds, dozens of bystanders gather around Gaines’ body, some appearing to sift through his pockets before the group dissipates, leaving Gaines in the street.

Bystanders continued to walk around Gaines, with no one coming to his aid before a taxi cab turned the corner and ran over his body.

Gaines died at an area hospital following the incident. His family has since filed a lawsuit against two Chicago cab companies, along with the driver of the vehicle that hit him. On Thursday, they added 7-Eleven to that claim.

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“There is no doubt about what happened on the morning that Marques Gaines was killed,” the family’s attorney, Chris Hurley, said in a statement. “The video record, culled from 7-Eleven's own security cameras and the City of Chicago surveillance tapes, shows the entire incident from onset to escalation to horrific aftermath.”

Hurley claims Gaines entered the store to make a purchase, and while he exited, he was confronted by a man who had just been removed from the store.

“The video shows the 7-Eleven security employee and other store personnel ignoring the fallen Gaines as he is robbed, left in the street unconscious for approximately two minutes, and eventually run over by a cab,” according to a release on the lawsuit.

The store named in the suit did not respond to NBC Chicago’s request for comment.

No arrests have been made in Gaines' death. 

“After my nephew moved to Chicago a few years ago, he fell in love with the city and the people here,” his aunt Phyllis Nelson said. “After his death, we had a celebration of Marques’ life in Atlanta. Over 100 people from Chicago flew down to remember him. They all want to know why their friend had to die. I, my family, and Marques’ friends deserve an answer.”

Photo Credit: Provided to NBC Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[College Student Attacked on Train While Witnesses Watched]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 16:09:58 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/215*120/blue+line+cta+attack.jpg

A 19-year-old college student in Chicago was returning home from a morning class Thursday when she says she was attacked by two people on a Chicago Blue Line train, all while witnesses sat and watched.

Jessica Hughes, a freshman at DePaul University, said she suffered a black eye, a broken nose and bite marks in the attack after a man and woman tried to steal her iPhone. 

“He kept beating me,” she said. “I yelled for help and no one came.” 

Hughes said she was sitting on the Blue Line train around 10 a.m. Thursday near the Kedzie stop when two people sat down near her and started yanking at her phone.

“He grabs me, pushes me to the floor, and he started beating on my head repeatedly,” she said. “He grabs my hand, looks me in the eye and bites my hand.”

Hughes said the woman with the man then joined in, breaking the young woman’s nose.

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According to Hughes, two men were also in the train car with her, but simply watched the attack happen. 

“One of the men said he was sleeping, but if you heard someone screaming you would wake up right,” she said.

The Chicago Transit Authority said it is working closely with police and reviewing surveillance footage.

<![CDATA[Alderman Refuses to Apologize For Using Racial Slur]]> Sat, 30 Apr 2016 08:58:25 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/david+moore+laraviere+presser.jpg

A Chicago alderman doubled down on his controversial use of a racial slur Friday, after using the N-word in a Facebook post criticizing the reassignment of Blaine Elementary School principal Troy LaRaviere. 

"I neither regret nor apologize," 17th Ward alderman David Moore said at a press conference Friday. "In this context, the word n----- was purposely used as an evocative metaphor that highlights the pejoratively reality that black people, our community, and our voice has been and continues to be, perceived as less than and irrelevant at the table of power."

Moore, who was elected in 2015, published the post using the racial slur on April 21, saying he was "appalled" by LaRaviere's reassignment. 

"All I hear is, stay in your place N-----, and don't you dare challenge the DICTATORIAL AUTHORITY designed to put corporate profits over effective public education," the post reads. 

LaRaviere, an outspoken critic of Mayor Rahm Emanuel and CPS policies, was reassigned on April 20. He told NBC5 he was given "no explanation," though a Board of Education official said at a community meeting on Monday that his removal "was not a political decision" but a "disciplinary, legal issue."

CPS spokesperson Emily Bitner said LaRaviere's removal involves a total of 12 charges, including ethics violations, insubordination and wrongful use of equipment. 

"I have had a front row seat to this my entire life, as a child, and a man growing up in Chicago, working in city government, and as a father," Moore said Friday. "As I listen to the voices of many constituents, the Troy LaRaveiere saga is yet another plot in the 'N-----, stay in your place' book of short stories to which many black people can relate and contribute."

LaRaviere has been reassigned to his home. His first hearing, which is not public, will be held April 29th. The process may take six to nine months.

Photo Credit: NBC5]]>
<![CDATA[Arson Charges Filed After Massive Furniture Warehouse Blaze]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 22:49:04 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sky5+fire.jpg

Federal arson charges have been filed against a disgruntled employee following a massive fire that destroyed a suburban warehouse for the popular furniture company The RoomPlace.

According to a criminal complaint obtained by NBC 5, Ruben Ochoa Cruz, who had been working as a high lift operator for the company's distribution center for roughly seven months, is accused of setting a blaze that caused an estimated $70 million in damages earlier this month.  

Authorities said a training, safety and inventory supervisor for the company told investigators Ochoa had just left a meeting regarding his attendance minutes before the fire started. 

"The purpose of this meeting was to discuss Ochoa's attendance record and determine if Ochoa had been present at work on April 11 and April 18, 2016," the complaint states. "During the meeting Ochoa claimed that he was present at work on both of those days. [The supervisor] informed Ochoa that his vacation time would be reduced to account for the days that Ochoa did not report to work. Ochoa became upset during the meeting and a heated argument ensued, during which [the supervisor] told Ochoa that he had enough information to terminate his employment."

After the argument, the supervisor claimed he told Ochoa he would review the facility's video and check with security about the attendance questions before taking action. Ochoa then went to work. 

According to the complaint, Ochoa admitted to investigators he lit a packing slip on fire and dropped the piece of paper near his fork lift.

"Ochoa stated: 'I see a little bit of fire and then I throw it,'" the complaint read. 

Shortly after, the fire alarm sounded. 

Scanner records showed Ochoa was in the area where the fire is believed to have started around the time the blaze sparked. 

The rapid flames created a scene so hot investigators couldn't go near the building last week. Nearly 20 hours after the blaze sparked, flames remained persistent in parts of the building. 

“Fire fighters from about 35 departments from the surrounding areas responded to help contain the fire,” Fire Chief George Rimbo said. “At one point, we had five aerial streams going to keep the fire from spreading to other buildings.” 

All employees were evacuated from the building and no injuries were reported, Rimbo said. 

"We are deeply disturbed at the news one of our employees has been charged in connection with the fire that destroyed our main distribution center April 21st," The RoomPlace CEO Paul Adams said in a statement. "We continue to cooperate with federal authorities as they search for more details around a cause and potential motive. In the meantime, we remain focused on rebuilding our warehouse and delivery infrastructure and supporting those employees displaced by the fire.”

When asked why he started the fire, Ochoa told investigators he knew the hours he was being questioned about were actually correct and he "lit the fire in order to get rid of the tension or stress and calm down," the complaint states.

It was not immediately clear if Ochoa had an attorney.

<![CDATA['Individual A' Won't Have to Pay Taxes on Hastert Hush-Money]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 16:37:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Hastert2.png

Federal sources confirm that the man at the center of the Dennis Hastert scandal, identified only as “Individual A”, paid no taxes on the $1.7 million he received from Hastert to guarantee his silence. 

That man, a former member of Hastert’s wrestling squad in the seventies, had arranged for Hastert to pay him a total of $3.5 million. But the payments were halted when federal investigators intervened. He is currently suing Hastert to recover the remaining $1.8 million. 

Contacted by NBC5 Investigates, Internal Revenue Service spokesman Jose Munoz refused to reveal the legal theories behind giving the man a pass on such a large sum. But an examination of the federal tax code describes limited scenarios where settlements are exempted from taxes.

Among those, certain types of damage payments are exempted. 

The Federal Tax Code states in section 104, that “the amount of any damages received (whether by suit or agreement) on account of personal physical injuries or physical sickness,” are not taxable. Most personal injury attorneys say this has been widely interpreted to include sexual abuse, which often carries significant medical treatment.

“These settlements should be closely reviewed, and the underlying facts and circumstances should be carefully determined,” according to an explanatory guide on irs.gov . “To be excludable, an emotional distress recovery must be on account of (attributed to) personal physical injuries or sickness, unless the amount is for reimbursement of actual medical expenses related to emotional distress.” 

Punitive damages, often awarded on top of compensatory awards, are not tax-free. 

One source close to the investigation told NBC5 that ironically, the undercover recordings of Hastert talking to his accuser might have worked in Individual A’s favor with the IRS. Damage agreements can be difficult to prove, in the absence of a written document. None existed in this case, but agents listening in to conversations between Hastert and Individual A indicated there was ample evidence that a prior payment arrangement had been made. Those agents would have been able to thus provide evidence to any revenue agents examining his financial windfall. 

Lacking official comment from the IRS, all of that is of course, open to speculation. It is likewise, not clear what the tax implications will be, if Individual A is successful in his current effort to recover the remaining $1.8 million plus interest. That case is pending in Kendall County court.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[New Study Finds Spanking Can Lead to Worse Behavior in Kids]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 14:30:35 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/219*120/crying+kid+use.jpg

A new study on spanking has found the more children are spanked, the more likely they are to defy their parents.

The study, authored by a team from the University of Michigan and the University of Texas at Austin, analyzed the outcomes associated with spanking, finding a link between spanking and anti-social behavior, aggression, mental health problems and cognitive disabilities.

Published in April’s Journal of Family Psychology, the study looked at five decades of research and more than 160,000 children.

"Our analysis focuses on what most Americans would recognize as spanking and not on potentially abusive behaviors," said Elizabeth Gershoff of the University of Texas at Austin told TODAY.com.

The study, which defined spanking as “hitting a child on their buttocks or extremities using an open hand,” determined there is “a link between spanking and increased risk for detrimental child outcomes.”

"In childhood, parental use of spanking was associated with low moral internalization, aggression, antisocial behavior, externalizing behavior problems, internalizing behavior problems, mental health problems, negative parent- child relationships, impaired cognitive ability, low self-esteem, and risk of physical abuse from parents. In adulthood, prior experiences of parental use of spanking were significantly associated with adult antisocial behavior, adult mental health problems, and with positive attitudes about spanking," researchers wrote, according to TODAY.com.

According to the study, the results for spanking “did not substantially differ” from those of physical abuse. They noted, however, that the effects are subtle and not every child who is spanked will develop behavioral or mental health problems. 

"Although the magnitude of the observed associations may be small, when extrapolated to the population in which 80 percent of children are being spanked, such small effects can translate into large societal impacts. Parents who use spanking, practitioners who recommend it, and policymakers who allow it might reconsider doing so given that there is no evidence that spanking does any good for children and all evidence points to the risk of it doing harm," the study read.

Previous studies have come to similar conclusions before, with some also finding a link between spanking and lower IQs.

Nineteen states still allow spanking in schools, including Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wyoming. 

The American Psychological Association claims positive reinforcement is more effective in changing a child’s behavior.

“The task is to help children change their behavior, and physical punishment is not needed to accomplish that,” Alan E. Kazdin, professor of psychology at Yale University and director of Yale's Parenting Center and Child Conduct Clinic told the association in a 2010 interview. “Developing positive opposite behaviors, i.e., the desired behaviors that the parent wants, is much more effective.” 

The message is similar to the one from researchers of the latest study.

"We hope that our study can help educate parents about the potential harms of spanking and prompt them to try positive and non-punitive forms of discipline," the team wrote.

<![CDATA[Rev. Jackson Supports Gas Tax Proposed To Combat Violence]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 16:04:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/jessejacksonsr123.jpg

Rev. Jesse Jackson is backing an effort proposed by Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin to use a gas tax to create jobs for youth as a means to combat gun violence.

"I believe the antidote to the zone of crisis is jobs, skill trades training and education- the opposite of policing the problem,” Jackson said in a statement.

The legislation would rely on a 4-cents-per-gallon tax increase on gasoline. The tax money would be used to create the Cook County Jobs Council, which would be composed of county officials and local business leaders.

Jackson held a press conference Friday at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition to pledge his support for the Community Stabilization & Anti-Violence Act. He was joined by Boykin, St. Sabina Fr. Michael Pfleger, Chicago Urban League President Shari Runner and former head of DEA Peter Bensinger.

"We are in a state of emergency, a real crisis," Boykin said. "We have come up with this plan to stay on the offensive, if you will."

The council would be responsible for identifying areas in the county with high unemployment among 16-24 year olds and creating jobs for them.

The legislation is also aimed at using the Justice Advisory Council to train parents using a message that emphasizes zero-tolerance for violence.

Under the plan, the Office for People with Disabilities would be established as a way of meeting the needs and advancing the well-being of people with disabilities.

“The increase in gunshot victims in Cook County has led to a greater number of individuals becoming permanently disabled,” the summary reads. “The Office will provide a strong voice for people with disabilities and connect them to available County resources.”

The legislation would also create a Community Policing Initiative to improve the relationship between communities and the law enforcement departments that police them. The initiative would be overseen by Sheriff Dart.

"This isn't something that is just the City of Chicago, it's not," Dart said. "It's throughout the county and the county is craving the same thing, a thoughtful jobs program. And it is the only thing that is going to solve this."

Funds from the tax would be used to hire 15 new Sheriff’s police officers to serve neighborhoods with high violence.

All told, the effort would put more than $45 million towards jobs programs and another five million for policing, parenting and people with disabilities.

<![CDATA[10 Players the Bears Could Target on Day 2 of NFL Draft]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 12:53:55 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Chicago+Bears1.png

After selecting Leonard Floyd in the first round of the NFL Draft on Thursday night, the Chicago Bears will have two more picks on Friday as the selection show makes its way through the second and third rounds.

The Bears have the 41st and 75th overall picks in the draft, and will be looking to continue to address a slew of positions where they have serious needs at.

So who could the Bears select on the draft’s second day? We have 10 players that the Bears could keep an eye on as their picks come up on the board.  

Mackensie Alexander, Cornerback – Clemson

The trend in the NFL is to go toward big, athletic cornerbacks, but Alexander could buck that trend with the Bears. He’s elicited comparisons to Josh Norman, and he has the anticipation and excellent coverage skills that could really help out the Bears’ secondary.

Sean Davis, Cornerback – Maryland

If the Bears opt to go with a more versatile and physical player, then Davis could certainly fit that mold. He is an eye-popping hitter with experience at both safety and cornerback, and although his coverage skills aren’t the greatest, he makes up for it by forcing turnovers and taking down ball carriers in open space.

Kevin Dodd, Defensive End – Clemson

Just about everyone thought that Shaq Lawson could be a potential fit for the Bears at number 11, but if the team decides they want to go with a defensive end in round two, then Dodd could be their guy. He’s lightning quick off the line of scrimmage, and he showed some great power off the snap in racking up 12 sacks this season. He has been criticized for his hand technique, but he’s a tireless worker and has been praised for his “high motor” in numerous draft previews.

Christian Hackenberg, Quarterback – Penn State

It seems highly unlikely that the Bears will be able to get Connor Cook in the second round, but if they decide that it’s time to get an heir apparent to Jay Cutler, then Hackenberg could be the guy. His draft stock took a serious dip this season, but there is a reason why he was one of the more highly touted collegiate quarterbacks going into the 2015 season. Putting him with Dowell Loggains and giving him a chance to learn behind Cutler could be just what the doctor ordered in terms of making him into a potential NFL player.

Derrick Henry, Running Back – Alabama

For fans disappointed that the Bears didn’t get a chance to draft Ezekiel Elliott, Henry could be a fascinating consolation prize. He could team up with Jeremy Langford to provide a bruising 1-2 punch out of the backfield next season, and even though there are concerns that the Heisman Trophy winner’s running style could lead to injuries, his physicality could be a welcome addition to the Bears’ offense.

Austin Johnson, Defensive Tackle – Penn State

While the Bears have emphasized speed and athleticism all over their defense, Johnson would provide more in the way of consistency and discipline. He’s a very smart player that is always gap savvy, and although he had some good numbers at the collegiate level, he may not get quite the same number of sacks at the NFL level.

Jarran Reed, Defensive Tackle – Alabama

A surprisingly athletic big man, Reed was targeted as a first round pick but has slipped out of the top 31 selections. If the Bears do opt for another tackle (it would mark the second year in a row they’ve taken a tackle with a high draft pick if they do), then an athletic, ferocious player like Reed could be right up their alley.

A’Shawn Robinson, Defensive Tackle – Alabama

Alabama has two incredible defensive tackles in this draft, and Robinson was a player that some mock drafts pegged as a target for the Bears in round one. He is a guy that has the tools to be successful, but has been criticized for taking plays off and showing poor technique at times. Seems like he would be an Ego Ferguson-type pick if the Bears are willing to roll the dice on him.

Noah Spence, Defensive End – Kentucky

Off-field concerns are something that Ryan Pace and company are going to take very seriously after the Ray McDonald fiasco, and Spence certainly comes with baggage. Banned from Ohio State after several instances of drug use, Spence has cleaned up his act, but will that past trump his impressive on-field production in his final collegiate season at Eastern Kentucky?

Jihad Ward, Defensive End – Illinois

It’s hard to peg where Ward will end up, but he could be a good fit for the Bears. He is a violent tackler and can play both tackle and end (and has room on his frame for more bulk to suit either position), and although he will take a bit of time to develop, he could easily be a versatile weapon if the Bears show some patience. 

<![CDATA[Honoring Chicagoland's Fallen Heroes]]> Sat, 10 Nov 2012 20:11:50 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/160*120/american-flag1.jpg NBC Chicago salutes the men and women in the armed forces who have died in combat.

Photo Credit: Getty]]>
<![CDATA[2016 James Beard Awards: Full List of Nominees]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 12:49:55 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/food-chicago-94868346.jpg

The James Beard Foundation Awards and Gala Reception return to Chicago Monday, marking the second year in a row the ceremony has been held in the Windy City. 

The prestigious food awards ceremony, known to some as “the Oscars of the food world,” kicks off at 6 p.m. at the Lyric Opera of Chicago and will honor the nation’s best chefs and restaurants.

Here is the full list of nominees:

2016 James Beard Foundation Book Awards

For books published in English in 2015. Winners will be announced on April 26, 2016.


American Cooking


The Beetlebung Farm Cookbook

Chris Fischer with Catherine Young

(Little, Brown and Company)


Heartlandia: Heritage Recipes from Portland's The Country Cat

Adam and Jackie Sappington with Ashley Gartland

(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)


The Southerner's Cookbook

David DiBenedetto with Phillip Rhodes and the Editors of Garden & Gun

(Harper Wave)


Baking and Dessert


The Everyday Baker: Recipes and Techniques for Foolproof Baking

Abigail Johnson Dodge

(Taunton Press)


The New Sugar & Spice: A Recipe for Bolder Baking

Samantha Seneviratne

(Ten Speed Press)


Sourdough: Recipes for Rustic Fermented Breads, Sweets, Savories, and More

Sarah Owens

(Roost Books)




American Wine: A Coming-of-Age Story

Tom Acitelli

(Chicago Review Press)


Lost Recipes of Prohibition: Notes from a Bootlegger’s Manual

Matthew Rowley

(Countryman Press)


The Oxford Companion to Wine

Jancis Robinson and Julia Harding

(Oxford University Press)


Cooking from a Professional Point of View


Gjelina: Cooking from Venice, California

Travis Lett

(Chronicle Books)


NOPI: The Cookbook

Yotam Ottolenghi and Ramael Scully

(Ten Speed Press)


This Is Camino

Russell Moore and Allison Hopelain

(Ten Speed Press)


Focus on Health


Cook for Your Life: Delicious, Nourishing Recipes for Before, During, and After Cancer Treatment

Anne Ogden Gaffney



Everyday Super Food

Jamie Oliver



Lighten Up, Y'all: Classic Southern Recipes Made Healthy and Wholesome

Virginia Willis

(Ten Speed Press)


General Cooking


The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science

J. Kenji López-Alt

(W. W. Norton & Company)


Mark Bittman’s Kitchen Matrix

Mark Bittman

(Pam Krauss Books)


Slow Fires: Mastering New Ways to Braise, Roast, and Grill

Justin Smillie with Kitty Greenwald

(Clarkson Potter)




Preserving the Japanese Way

Nancy Singleton Hachisu

(Andrews McMeel)


Senegal: Modern Senegalese Recipes from the Source to the Bowl

Pierre Thiam with Jennifer Sit

(Lake Isle Press)


Zahav: A World of Israeli Cooking

Michael Solomonov and Steven Cook

(Rux Martin Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) 




Fire and Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking

Darra Goldstein

Photographer: Stefan Wettainen

(Ten Speed Press)


Near & Far: Recipes Inspired by Home and Travel

Heidi Swanson

Photographer: Heidi Swanson

(Ten Speed Press)


Root to Leaf: A Southern Chef Cooks Through the Seasons

Steven Satterfield

​Photographer: John Kernick

(Harper Wave)


Reference and Scholarship


The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks

Toni Tipton-Martin

(University of Texas Press)


The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Darra Goldstein

(Oxford University Press)


To Live and Dine in Dixie: The Evolution of Urban Food Culture in the Jim Crow South

Angela Jill Cooley

(University of Georgia Press)


Single Subject


A Bird in the Hand: Chicken Recipes for Every Day and Every Mood

Diana Henry

(Mitchell Beazley)


Mastering Pasta: The Art and Practice of Handmade Pasta, Gnocchi, and Risotto

Marc Vetri with David Joachim

(Ten Speed Press)


Tacos: Recipes and Provocations

Alex Stupak and Jordana Rothman

(Clarkson Potter)


Vegetable Focused and Vegetarian


A Modern Way to Eat: 200+ Satisfying Vegetarian Recipes (That Will Make You Feel Amazing)

Anna Jones

(Ten Speed Press)


V Is for Vegetables: Inspired Recipes & Techniques for Home Cooks

Michael Anthony

(Little, Brown and Company)


Vegetarian India: A Journey Through the Best of Indian Home Cooking

Madhur Jaffrey

(Alfred A. Knopf)


Writing and Literature


Pawpaw: In Search of America’s Forgotten Fruit

Andrew Moore

(Chelsea Green Publishing)


Pig Tales: An Omnivore’s Quest for Sustainable Meat

Barry Estabrook

(W. W. Norton & Company)


Soda Politics: Taking on Big Soda (and Winning)

Marion Nestle

(Oxford University Press)



The winner of the Book of the Year Award and the Cookbook Hall of Fame inductee will be announced on April 26, 2016.



2016 James Beard Foundation Broadcast Media Awards

Presented by Breville and Lenox

For television, web, and radio programs aired in 2015. Winners will be announced on April 26, 2016.




For Grace

Filmmakers: Kevin Pang and Mark Helenowski

Airs on: Vimeo, iTunes, Amazon, and Netflix


Just Eat It: A Food Waste Story

Director: Grant Baldwin

Producers: Jenny Rustemeyer and Melanie Wood

Airs on: MSNBC


The Starfish Throwers

Director: Jesse Roesler

Producers: Jesse Roesler and Melody Gilbert

Airs on: DirecTV Audience Network and iTunes


Outstanding Personality/Host


Host: Vivian Howard

A Chef’s Life

Airs on: PBS


Host: Pati Jinich

Pati’s Mexican Table

Airs on: WETA


Host: Andrew Zimmern

Bizarre Foods

Airs on: Travel Channel 




Burnt Toast

Host: Kenzi Wilbur

Producers: Laura Mayer, Henry Molofsky, and Andy Bowers

Airs on: iTunes and Soundcloud


Eat This Podcast

Host: Jeremy Cherfas

Producer: Jeremy Cherfas

Airs on: eatthispodcast.com



Host: Tina Antolini

Producer: Tina Antolini

Airs on: southernfoodways.org/gravy


Radio Show/Audio Webcast


Eating in Sync with Our Master Clocks

Host: Allison Aubrey

Airs on: NPR’s Eating and Health


The Food Chain: Chinatown

Host: Dan Saladino

Producers: Kent DePinto, Sarah Stolarz, and Dan Saladino

Airs on: NPR Stations/BBC World Service


What’s On Your Plate: The Family Peach Farm That Became a Symbol of the Food Revolution and A Crime of Passion: When the Love of Yogurt Burned Too Bright

Host: Dan Charles

Producer: Jeff Rogers

Airs on: NPR’s The Salt




CBS Sunday Morning: The Food Issue: Eat Drink & Be Merry

Host: Charles Osgood

Director: Nora Gerard

Producers: Rand Morrison, Gavin Boyle, Jason Sacca, and Amy Rosner

Airs on: CBS


Christmas at Bobby’s

Host: Bobby Flay

Producers: Bobby Flay, Kim Martin, Kirsty Nordal, Stacy St. Onge, Crystal Bahmaie, and Elina Brown

Airs on: Food Network


Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays

Host: Lidia Bastianich

Producers: Laurie Donnelly, Anne Adams, and Shelly Burgess Nicotra

Airs on: PBS


Television Program, in Studio or Fixed Location


Extra Virgin

Hosts: Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos

Producers: Gordon Elliott, Mark Schneider, Dan Connell, Sara Porter, Debi Mazar, and Gabriele Corcos​

Airs on: Cooking Channel


Jacques Pépin Heart & Soul

Host: Jacques Pépin

Producer: Tina Salter

Airs on: KQED-TV


Pati’s Mexican Table

Host: Pati Jinich

Producers: Gordon Elliott, Mark Schneider, Dan Connell, Sara Porter, and Pati Jinich

Airs on: WETA


Television Program, on Location


A Chef’s Life

Host: Vivian Howard

Producers: Vivian Howard and Cynthia Hill

Airs on: PBS


I’ll Have What Phil’s Having

Host: Phil Rosenthal

Producers: Laurie Donnelly, Phil Rosenthal, Richard Rosenthal, John Bedolis, Christopher Collins, Lydia Tenaglia, Craig H. Shepherd, and David Beebe

Airs on: PBS


The Mind of a Chef

Hosts: Gabrielle Hamilton and David Kinch

Producers: Anthony Bourdain, Joseph Caterini, Christopher Collins, Lydia Tenaglia, Michael Steed, Jared Andrukanis, Alexandra Chaden, Jonathan Cianfrani, Nari Kye, Anna Chai, and Siobhan Walshe

Airs on: PBS


Television Segment


“Diving for Maine Sea Urchin,” “Tom the Truffle Dog,” “Are Vertical Farms the Future?”

Producers: Jeremy Harlan and Sarah LeTrent

Airs on: CNN, CNN Airport, and CNN.com


TODAY Show’s “TODAY Food”

Hosts: Erica Hill, Sheinelle Jones, Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, and Carson Daly

Producers: Deborah Kosofsky, Samantha Wender, Rainy Farrell, Jackie Olensky, Bianca Borges, Allison Simpson, and Tina DeGraff

Airs on: NBC


PBS NewsHour’s “Food4Thought”

Host: Allison Aubrey

Producer: Mary Beth Durkin

Airs on: PBS 


Video Webcast, Fixed Location and/or Instructional


Indian Curries: The Basics & Beyond

Host: Raghavan Iyer

Producer: Jared Maher

Airs on: craftsy.com


Mad Genius Tips

Host: Justin Chapple

Producers: Alex Vallis, Keri Hansen, Cheryl Houser, and Brian Egan

Airs on: foodandwine.com


3-Ingredient Recipes

Producer: Matt Duckor

Airs on: epicurious.com


Video Webcast, on Location


Seafood at the Source

Director: Ryan Ffrench

Producers: James Mulcahy and Ryan Ffrench

Airs on: youtube.com/zagat


The Sushi Chef: Oona Tempest and Toshio Oguma

Producer: Elana Schulman

Airs on: munchies.vice.com


Yellow Barn Biodynamic Farm

Producer: Angus Cann

Airs on: wholefoodsmarket.com/blog



Visual and Technical Excellence


Avec Eric Season 3

Directors: Jason Goldwatch, Geoffrey Drummond, and Carlos Naude

Photographers: Sarorn R. Sim, Michael Berlucchi, and Daniel McKeown

Editors: Luis Alvarez y Alvarez, Sarah Stuve, Benjamin Di Giacomo, and Matthew Vigil

Airs on: Cooking Channel


Chef’s Table

Directors: David Gelb, Clay Jeter, Brian McGinn, and Andrew Fried

Photographers: Will Basanta and Adam Bricker

Editors: Brad Grossman, J. Santos, Eric Freidenberg, Ravi Subramanian, Adrienne Gits, and Jesse Overman

Airs on: Netflix


Food for Thought, Food for Life

Director: Susan Rockefeller

Photographers: Robert Featherstone, Clarissa De Los Reyes, Rhiannon Hyde, Selene Richholt, Micah Schaffer, and Zao Wang

Editor: Jackie French

Airs on: eatingwell.com and foodforthoughtfilm.com


2016 James Beard Foundation Journalism Awards

For articles published in English in 2015. Winners will be announced on April 26, 2016.


Dining and Travel


“America’s Best Food Cities”

Tom Sietsema

The Washington Post


“It’s 8 A.M. Somewhere”

The Staff of Lucky Peach

Lucky Peach


“A Modern Guide to Timeless London”

Lauren Collins

Bon Appétit



Food and Culture


“Kiss My Grits”

Shane Mitchell

The Bitter Southerner


“In Search of Ragu”

Matt Goulding

Roads & Kingdoms


“Straight-Up Passing”

John Birdsall




Food and Health


“Good Seed, Bad Seed”

Barry Estabrook



“The Healthy Cook’s Guide to Fat”

Sidney Fry and Robin Bashinsky

Cooking Light


“How to Eat Healthy(ish)”

Jon Wilde




Food Blog


Andrew Zimmern


Lucky Peach


Serious Eats



Food Coverage in a General-Interest Publication


Garden & Gun

David DiBenedetto



Jim Nelson


Los Angeles Magazine

Lesley Bargar Suter and Bill Esparza



Food-Related Columns



Francis Lam

New York Times Magazine


“Edible Life”

Corby Kummer

New Republic



Todd Kliman

The Washingtonian



Food Reporting


“Corn Wars”

Ted Genoways

New Republic


“Seafood From Slaves - An AP Investigation Helps Free Slaves in the 21st Century”

Martha Mendoza, Margie Mason, and Robin McDowell

Associated Press


“48 Hours that Changed the Future of Rainforests”

Nathanael Johnson




Home Cooking


"Cook Like a Pro!"

Adam Rapoport

Bon Appétit


“Into the Woods”

Langdon Cook and Cathy Whims



“Three Dishes: Gnocchi”

Brette Warshaw

Lucky Peach






Maryse Chevriere



“Ham to Ham Combat: The Tale of Two Smithfields”

Emily Wallace



“Stone-Ground Killer”

Julia Reed

Garden & Gun



Personal Essay


“The Chef Who Saved My Life”

Brett Martin



“(The New) Broadway, NOLA”

Rien Fertel

The Local Palate


“On Chicken Tenders”

Helen Rosner






“The Brief, Extraordinary Life of Cody Spafford”

Allecia Vermillion

Seattle Met Magazine


“Christiane Lauterbach: The Woman Who Ate Atlanta”

Wendell Brock

The Bitter Southerner


“Edna Lewis and the Black Roots of American Cooking”

Francis Lam

New York Times Magazine



Visual Storytelling


“How to Make the World’s Best Cheeseburger, Using Magic”

Eric Gillin and Andrew Jive



“One Night: Kachka”

Erin DeJesus, Danielle Centoni, Jen Stevenson, Dina Avila, McGraw Wolfman



“Smells the Same”

Joana Avillez

Lucky Peach


Wine, Spirits, and other Beverages


“Let Us Now Retire the Whiskey Woman”

Courtney Balestier



“Old World, New Wine”

Alan Richman



“There Are Almost No Black People Brewing Craft Beer. Here’s Why.”

Dave Infante



Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award


“Four Star Semilla Is New York’s Next Great Restaurant,” “How to Navigate Shuko, New York’s Most Exciting New Japanese Restaurant,” “Contra and Wildair Are the Anti-Elitist Icons of NYC Cuisine”

Ryan Sutton



“A Health Food Restaurant so Cool It Will Have You Happily Eating Seeds,” “Revisiting Momofuku Ko, After the Revolution,” “Polo Bar Review: Ralph Lauren Corrals the Fashionable Herd”

Tejal Rao

Bloomberg Pursuits


“Spoon & Stable,” “Gilding the Chicken,” “A Second Act for the Forum?”

Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl

Mpls.St.Paul Magazine


MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award

“My Father and the Wine”

Irina Dumitrescu

The Yale Review


“Pork Life”

Todd Kliman

Lucky Peach


“The Second Most Famous Thing to Happen to Hiroshima”

Matt Goulding

Roads & Kingdoms



2016 JBF Outstanding Restaurant Design Awards


Winners will be announced on May 2, 2016.


75 Seats and Under (For the best restaurant design or renovation in North America since January 1, 2013)


Firm: Demian Repucci Design

Designer: Demian Repucci

Project: Bruno, NYC


Designers: Jeff Guga, Jon Shook, Vinny Dotolo, and Helen Johannesen

Project: Jon & Vinny’s, Los Angeles


Firm: Renzo Piano Building Workshop

Designers: Renzo Piano Building Workshop in Collaboration with Cooper Robertson

Project: Untitled, NYC


76 Seats and Over (For the best restaurant design or renovation in North America since January 1, 2013)


Firm: Land and Sea Dept.

Designers: Mode Carpentry, Land and Sea Dept. (Robert McAdams, Jon Martin, Peter Toalson, and Cody Hudson)

Project: Cherry Circle Room, Chicago


Firm: Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors

Designers: Robin Standefer and Steven Alesch

Project: Cindy’s Rooftop Restaurant, Chicago


Firm: +tongtong

Designer: John Tong

Project: Drake Devonshire Inn, Wellington, Ontario, Canada


Design Icon

The Four Seasons Restaurant



The 2016 JBF Restaurant and Chef Awards


Winners will be announced on May 2, 2016.

Best New Restaurant


Death & Taxes

Raleigh, NC





Liholiho Yacht Club

San Francisco



New Orleans








Outstanding Baker


Joanne Chang

Flour Bakery + Café



Mark Furstenberg

Bread Furst

Washington, D.C.


Zachary Golper

Bien Cuit

Brooklyn, NY


Belinda Leong and Michel Suas

B. Patisserie

San Francisco


William Werner

Craftsman and Wolves

San Francisco


Outstanding Bar Program


Arnaud’s French 75 Bar

New Orleans


Bar Agricole

San Francisco


Clyde Common

Portland, OR



New Orleans


Maison Premiere

Brooklyn, NY 


Outstanding Chef

Presented by All-Clad Metalcrafters


Sean Brock




Suzanne Goin


Los Angeles


Donald Link


New Orleans


Michael Solomonov




Michael Tusk


San Francisco


Outstanding Pastry Chef


Meg Galus




Maura Kilpatrick


Cambridge, MA


Dolester Miles

Highlands Bar and Grill

Birmingham, AL


Dahlia Narvaez

Osteria Mozza

Los Angeles


Ghaya Oliveira




Jennifer Yee




Outstanding Restaurant





Frasca Food & Wine

Boulder, CO


Highlands Bar and Grill

Birmingham, AL


Momofuku Noodle Bar



The Spotted Pig



Outstanding Restaurateur


Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz

Boka Restaurant Group (Boka, Girl & the Goat, Momotaro, Swift & Sons, and others)



Ken Friedman

The Spotted Pig, The Breslin, Tosca Café



Michael Mina

Mina Restaurants (Michael Mina, Bourbon Steak, RN74, and others)

San Francisco


Cindy Pawlcyn

Mustards Grill, Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen, Cindy's Waterfront at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Napa, CA


Stephen Starr

Starr Restaurants (Serpico, The Dandelion, Talula's Garden, and others)




Outstanding Service

Presented by Goose Island Beer Company


Blue Hill at Stone Barns

Pocantico Hills, NY


Eleven Madison Park



North Pond




San Francisco






Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional


Sam Calagione

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Milton, DE


Ron Cooper

Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal

Ranchos de Taos, NM


Miljenko Grgich

Grgich Hills Estate

Rutherford, CA


Rob Tod

Allagash Brewing Company

Portland, ME


Harlen Wheatley

Buffalo Trace Distillery

Frankfort, KY


Outstanding Wine Program

Presented by Robert Mondavi Winery


Bern’s Steakhouse

Tampa, FL





Commander’s Palace

New Orleans



Charleston, SC





Rising Star Chef of the Year

Presented by S. Pellegrino Sparkling Natural Spring Water


Alex Bois

High Street on Market



Angela Dimayuga

Mission Chinese Food



Grae Nonas




Matt Rudofker

Momofuku Ssäm Bar



Daniela Soto-Innes




Jenner Tomaska




Best Chef: Great Lakes


Abraham Conlon

Fat Rice



Curtis Duffy




Lee Wolen




Erling Wu-Bower

Nico Osteria



Andrew Zimmerman




Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic


Peter Chang

Peter Chang

Arlington, VA


Eli Kulp




Rich Landau




Aaron Silverman

Rose’s Luxury

Washington, D.C.


Greg Vernick

Vernick Food & Drink



Cindy Wolf




Best Chef: Midwest


Paul Berglund

The Bachelor Farmer



Justin Carlisle




Kevin Nashan

Sidney Street Café

St. Louis


Lenny Russo

Heartland Restaurant & Farm Direct Market

St. Paul, MN


Kevin Willmann


St. Louis


Best Chef: New York City


Marco Canora



Mario Carbone and Rich Torrisi



Anita Lo



Jonathan Waxman



Jody Williams



Best Chef: Northeast


Karen Akunowicz

Myers + Chang



Brian Hill


Camden, ME


Zak Pelaccio

Fish & Game

Hudson, NY


Susan Regis


Cambridge, MA


Mike Wiley and Andrew Taylor

Eventide Oyster Co.

Portland, ME


Best Chef: Northwest


Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñónez Denton


Portland, OR


Mike Easton

Il Corvo Pasta



Renee Erickson

The Whale Wins



Justin Woodward


Portland, OR


Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi




Best Chef: South


Vishwesh Bhatt


Oxford, MS


Justin Devillier

La Petite Grocery

New Orleans


Jose Enrique

Jose Enrique

San Juan, PR


Slade Rushing


New Orleans


Isaac Toups

Toups’ Meatery

New Orleans


Best Chef: Southeast


Kevin Gillespie




Edward Lee

610 Magnolia

Louisville, KY


Steven Satterfield

Miller Union



Andrew Ticer and Michael Hudman

Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen



Tandy Wilson

City House



Best Chef: Southwest


Bryce Gilmore

Barley Swine



Steve McHugh


San Antonio


Hugo Ortega




Alex Seidel




Justin Yu





Best Chef: West


Matthew Accarrino


San Francisco


Michael Cimarusti


Los Angeles


Dominique Crenn

Atelier Crenn

San Francisco


Jeremy Fox

Rustic Canyon

Santa Monica, CA


Corey Lee


San Francisco


Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo


Los Angeles


2016 JBF America’s Classics


Al Ameer Restaurant, Dearborn, MI

Owners: Khalil Ammar and Zaki Hashem


Brooks' House of BBQ, Oneonta, NY

Owners: Beth and Ryan Brooks


Bully’s Restaurant, Jackson, MS

Owners: Tyrone Bully and Greta Brown Bully


Matt’s Place Drive-In, Butte, MT

Owners: Robin and Brad Cockhill


Rancho de Chimayó Restaurante, Chimayo, NM

Owner: Florence Jaramillo 


2016 JBF Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America


Gina Gallo


Sonoma, CA


Jim Lahey

Baker and Proprietor



Ed Levine

Author and Founder of Serious Eats



Temple Grandin

Author and Animal Rights Activist

Fort Collins, CO


Marcus Samuelsson

Chef and Restaurateur



2016 JBF Humanitarian of the Year 

Father Greg Boyle

Homeboy Industries

Los Angeles


2016 JBF Lifetime Achievement Award

Leah Chase

Dooky Chase’s Restaurant

New Orleans

Photo Credit: BLOOMBERG BEWS]]>
<![CDATA[Man Pens Perfectly Hangry Love Letter to Suburban Restaurant]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 11:23:29 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/burger+antics+note.png

Romeo and Juliet’s love doesn’t have anything on the burning desire that a man named Andy described for a suburban Chicago restaurant.

The wait staff at Brookfield’s Burger Antics say they were closing up shop Friday when one server noticed a note was left from a diner on one of the tables.

At first, it was assumed they had been upset about something as it begins ridden with profanity.

“To the owner,” it writes. “F-CK you!!”

But soon it's realized the man wasn’t mad. He was just madly in love with their burgers.

“Your burgers are so f-cking good that all other food is ruined for me,” it continues. “Every experience here tops the previous one, and as tasty and delicious as it all is, I’m never satisfied. I always want more. Just 3 ounces more! Or 40!”

The anonymous customer ended the letter in what could be the most romantic way anyone ever has for a restaurant.

“I live for your food, and I die for your food. And so, I leave you with this. I love you. F-ck you, Andy’

The owners of Burger Antics at 3740 Grand Blvd. were so touched by the customer’s review they posted the image on Imgur, where it shot to the number one spot. By Thursday it had been viewed more than two million times

Photo Credit: Imgur / Burger Antics
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Family's Heartbreaking Advice to Young Boy Battling Cancer]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 12:13:12 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lucas+bear+2.JPG


From birthday cards to tattoos, it’s clear 5-year-old Lucas “Bear” Cervone has supporters across the globe behind him as he continues his battle with cancer.
With hundreds of cards delivered to his home in a matter of days, Lucas’ 6th birthday has become more than just a simple celebration.
According to his family, Lucas is spending his days at home opening card after card. But they made sure the young fighter knew that he would be supported in life and in death.
“Tonight as we laid down with Lucas in bed, we told him that if he saw GiGi or Papa Tony or Big Tim or Julia or Anna or Destiny that he didn’t need to be afraid,” his family posted on a Facebook page set up to support Lucas. “They would be there to protect him and keep him safe.”
[[377589911, C]]
The Chicago boy was first diagnosed with pediatric leukemia in August 2012.
"He fought through three very long years and very intensive years of treatment and he won, he beat it," said Lucas' father, Anthony Cervone.
But a short time later, he was diagnosed with another form of cancer, this one incurable. After a stem cell transplant in November 2015 and months in the hospital overcoming viruses, Lucas finally returned home, celebrating Christmas with his older brother, Franco, in February.
Then, just a few weeks ago, the Cervone family received the news it had been dreading: doctors found an incurable tumor near Lucas' heart. 
"It has been decided that there are no further curative options," the family wrote Monday. "In simplest terms, there is nothing more we can do to fight this. We have started palliative chemo to attempt to slow the growth of the tumor. The tumor is wrapped around the pulmonary artery and is pressing on Lucas' heart."
Shortly after learning of the news, the Cervone family asked supporters to send Lucas cards for his birthday. And send they did.
On top of the cards, people from around the world are sending photos of their Lucas “tattoos,” writing his name on their arms after the family shared images of the young boy “tattooing” friends and family in the hospital. 
While the family said they appreciate the outpouring of support for their little boy, they have asked for privacy and that anyone who wanted to donate more than cards instead donate to some of the many organizations that have helped the family through their difficult journey. (See the list here) 
“As for Lucas, he is quiet and keeping to himself,” the family wrote. “He is grumpy and angry all at the same time. He has every right to have these feelings and we are respecting them. Please keep the tattoos and cards coming. Lucas loves them so far. Thank you for the ongoing support during this extremely hard time.”
[[377590131, C]]
Letters and cards can be sent to:
Lucas Bear Heroes or Lucas Bear
40 E. Chicago Ave., No. 162
Chicago, IL 60611


From birthday cards to tattoos, it’s clear 5-year-old Lucas “Bear” Cervone has supporters across the globe behind him as he continues his battle with cancer.
With hundreds of cards delivered to his home in a matter of days, Lucas’ 6th birthday has become more than just a simple celebration.

According to his family, Lucas is spending his days at home opening card after card. But they made sure the young fighter knew that he would be supported in life and in death.

“Tonight as we laid down with Lucas in bed, we told him that if he saw GiGi or Papa Tony or Big Tim or Julia or Anna or Destiny that he didn’t need to be afraid,” his family posted on a Facebook page set up to support Lucas. “They would be there to protect him and keep him safe.”

[[377589911, C]]

The Chicago boy was first diagnosed with pediatric leukemia in August 2012.

"He fought through three very long years and very intensive years of treatment and he won, he beat it," said Lucas' father, Anthony Cervone.

But a short time later, he was diagnosed with another form of cancer, this one incurable. After a stem cell transplant in November 2015 and months in the hospital overcoming viruses, Lucas finally returned home, celebrating Christmas with his older brother, Franco, in February.

Then, just a few weeks ago, the Cervone family received the news it had been dreading: doctors found an incurable tumor near Lucas' heart. 

"It has been decided that there are no further curative options," the family wrote Monday. "In simplest terms, there is nothing more we can do to fight this. We have started palliative chemo to attempt to slow the growth of the tumor. The tumor is wrapped around the pulmonary artery and is pressing on Lucas' heart."

Shortly after learning of the news, the Cervone family asked supporters to send Lucas cards for his birthday. And send they did.

On top of the cards, people from around the world are sending photos of their Lucas “tattoos,” writing his name on their arms after the family shared images of the young boy “tattooing” friends and family in the hospital. 

While the family said they appreciate the outpouring of support for their little boy, they have asked for privacy and that anyone who wanted to donate more than cards instead donate to some of the many organizations that have helped the family through their difficult journey. (See the list here

"As for Lucas, he is quiet and keeping to himself," the family wrote. "He is grumpy and angry all at the same time. He has every right to have these feelings and we are respecting them. Please keep the tattoos and cards coming. Lucas loves them so far. Thank you for the ongoing support during this extremely hard time."

[[377590131, C]]

Letters and cards can be sent to:
Lucas Bear Heroes or Lucas Bear
40 E. Chicago Ave., No. 162
Chicago, IL 60611

Photo Credit: Lucas Bear Heroes
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<![CDATA[McDonald’s Brings Back Daily Double for Chicago]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 11:30:20 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/McDonalds1.png

McDonald’s is bringing back its Daily Double to the Chicago area for a limited time. 

The double-patty cheeseburgers is topped with lettuce, onions, tomato and mayonnaise. 

It was featured on McDonald’s menus in 2011 and 2012, but now will be reappearing in Chicago area restaurants until the end of May for $2.19.

[[377567341, C]]

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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