<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Top Stories]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.com en-us Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:16:13 -0500 Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:16:13 -0500 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Chicago-Bound Flight Diverted After Altercation]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 06:41:26 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Southwest-Airlines-generic1.jpg

A Southwest Airlines flight headed for Chicago was diverted to Amarillo, Texas, late Monday night after an altercation on the flight, officials said.

Southwest Airlines said in a statement that “several passengers traveling together became disorderly” and “refused to obey instructions from the crew.”

Amarillo police received a call around 10:20 p.m. reporting an altercation on Southwest Airlines Flight 1522. The flight landed at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport and six men were detained by police, according to authorities. Southwest Airlines said six other members of the group deplaned and stayed in Amarillo.

The men were in custody as of Monday morning and no charges had been filed.

Tiffany Darge, who said she was sitting next to the group on the plane, told NBC Chicago the men were being rowdy and asked a flight attendant for alcohol during the flight. When the flight attendant denied them, Darge said the group called the woman "racist" and "a pig." Darge also said the group started making offensive comments to her when she got up to go to the bathroom and the crew later moved her seat away from the group. 

The flight, which came from San Diego, continued to Midway Airport after the altercation and landed without further incident, according to the airline.

The incident prompted concerns from some passengers following the unscheduled landing.

“Safety is the top priority at Southwest Airlines, and we will always take appropriate actions to ensure the safety and security of our crews and customers,” the airline said.

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Neighbor Recounts Violent Willowbrook Sex Assault]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 22:40:58 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sex+assault.png

Police are investigating whether a vehicle matching the description of one driven by a man who beat, stabbed and sexually assaulted a woman in a Chicago suburb over the weekend is connected to the brutal attack. 

The vehicle was towed overnight Monday after it was spotted and reported to Brookfield police. 

Brian Feirick told NBC Chicago he called police Sunday night after seeing a suspicious car parked in his father's handicapped parking space.

“I said it was a dirty car with an Indiana plate and I’ve never seen it before,” Feirick said. “If this guy would have parked car 10 feet that way the car would have sat at least another day or two, if not more.”

Officers arrived at his home within minutes. Willowbrook police said they are processing registration on the car.

"In processing the vehicle, they're looking for any evidence whether it be fingerprints, DNA or any items that they could send to a lab that could be further evidence," said Willowbrook Police Chief Mark Shelton.

The 26-year-old woman was beaten, stabbed and sexually assaulted by an intruder in a home in suburban Willowbrook Saturday afternoon.

The woman was pulling her car into the driveway of her parents' home in the 700 block of 73rd Court at about 1 p.m. when a dark blue older model Nissan Altima followed her into the driveway, police said.

A man then got out of the car and asked the woman for money. When she refused and went inside the house, the man then began knocking on the side door of the home and asking to make a phone call. When she refused again, he forced his way inside the house, police said.

Nobody else was home at the time of the incident.

Inside the home, the man stabbed the woman multiple times with an unknown sharp object, according to police. The victim's family told NBC Chicago she was beaten "like an animal," stabbed 16 to 18 times and sexually assaulted.

When the offender left, the woman was able to run to a neighbor's home and call police.

The woman was hospitalized with broken bones in her face and multiple stab wounds in her throat, face, torso, abdomen and back, her father said.

"She was covered head to toe with blood," said one neighbor who was afraid to appear on camera, but helped the victim moments after the attack until police arrived. "My husband put a blanket around her and ran outside to see if he could find who had done this to her."

She remained hospitalized Monday with serious but not life-threatening injuries.

"This is something you never want to see," the woman's father said. "No human being should ever be treated like this."

Willowbrook police called the incident "highly unusual," saying the suburb is a "very safe town."

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Police released a sketch of the intruder, who remains on the loose, on Sunday. The woman described the man to police, but she told them she did not know him. The Illinois State Crime Commission has offered a $5,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest of the man responsible for the brutal attack.

"I believe he is very dangerous," said Willowbrook Deputy Police Chief Mark Altobella. "This woman went through quite a beating."

The suspect is described as an African-American man in his 30s, standing about 5-foot-10-inches and weighing 160 to 180 pounds. He was wearing a blue short-sleeve shirt and dark-colored khaki shorts and white socks.

The car driven by the offender has dark tinted windows, no front license plate and a visor on the roof in front of the sunroof.

It is NBC 5's policy to not name the victims of sexual violence, but the woman's family has asked us to bring attention to a GoFundMe page that has been set up in her name to help offset the medical expenses associated with the brutal attack.

Anyone with information about the incident are asked to contact the Willowbrook Police Department at (630) 325-2121 or (630) 325-2808.

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<![CDATA[Ricketts: 'We Don't Want to Get Ahead of Ourselves']]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 20:28:54 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-479838392.jpg

The owner of the Chicago Cubs responded after Jake Arrieta threw an historic no-hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers Sunday night, congratulating the pitcher but also warning fans not to think too far ahead.

"That was a hell of a game," Tom Ricketts said Monday. "I give Jake a lot of credit. He was on. I think it was a great way to finish that road trip. After a couple of tough losses, it was great to see Jake come back and get us on the winning path."

Arrieta's game had many fans thinking about a potential World Series run, but the team has a ways to go before that could happen.

"We don't want to get ahead of ourselves. We just want to have a good September," Ricketts said. "Obviously last night was big. For folks coming out tonight, we're going to give Jake a round of applause before the game."

Arrieta's no-hitter was the first in his own career and the first for the Cubs as a team since the 2008 season when Carlos Zambrano threw a no-hitter against the Houston Astros at Miller Park in Milwaukee. Sunday night's no-hitter marked the 14th in Cubs history.

Following the 2-0 victory, Arrieta credited the entire team for the win and said he was able to pitch the no-hitter simply by focusing on each pitch.

"As the game wore on, I tried to use my past experiences to my advantage, tried to stay calm and focus on quality pitch after quality pitch," Arrieta said.

The game broke the Cubs' four-game losing streak and gave the team a 5.5 game lead over the San Francisco Giants for the second wild card spot in the National League.

The Cubs celebrated the win with a pajama party that team manager Joe Maddon planned before the game, no matter the outcome.

<![CDATA[LA on Verge of 2024 Olympics Bid]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:10:56 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/196*120/01-08-2015-olympics-los-angeles-coliseum-flag.jpg

Los Angeles appears on the verge of stepping in as the U.S. candidate for the 2024 Olympic Games.

With Boston bowing out earlier this year, the LA City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday on a proposal to authorize Mayor Eric Garcetti to execute agreements related to the Olympic bid. If approved, the U.S. Olympic Committee is expected to announce LA is the candidate.

Rome, Paris, Hamburg, Germany and Budapest, Hungary are already in the mix. The International Olympic Committee will pick the host city in 2017.

Los Angeles initially lost the opportunity to bid to Boston but regained it after the East Coast city backed out over concerns about financial liability.

But many financial details of the Los Angeles plan remain vague. City analysts said last week that based on the information given to the city so far, "it is difficult to determine the fiscal impact and risk to the city of hosting the 2024 Games at this time."

The City Council's Ad Hoc Committee on the 2024 Summer Olympics backed an agreement last week that would show the United States Olympic Committee that the city of Los Angeles is committed to pursuing a bid to host the Games, but the full council was given extra time to review bidding documents that were delivered to the city last week. The "joinder" agreement was requested by the United States Olympic Committee.

Some city officials and residents have urged caution in pursuing the bid, saying the city could be on the hook for cost overruns incurred by hosting the Olympics, which boosters of the bid estimate as costing about $4.6 billion to run. Time has also been limited for Los Angeles, which is being given only a few weeks to review the pact before the IOC's Sept. 15 deadline -- compared with the several months that Boston had to study the idea.

Last week was also the first time many city leaders and analysts were able to review a 200-page draft bid book and a proposed contract between the USOC and LA24, the nonprofit formed to pursue the bid and potentially manage the games if Los Angeles is picked as the host city. LA24 chair Casey Wasserman, a businessman and philanthropist, assured the committee last week that he believed "that this can be and will be the most responsible Games possible."

The ad hoc panel voted in favor of the effort after revisions were made to the agreement to clarify that the city will still have the opportunity to negotiate a more comprehensive "host city contract" at a later date. City attorneys told the panel that by backing the bid effort Tuesday, the city will not be exposed to any major financial obligations or liabilities.

A preliminary review of the budget appeared to show that one of the major capital projects, the Olympic Village, "may significantly exceed the projected $1 billion," City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana and Chief Legislative Analyst Sharon Tso wrote in a report Thursday. The analysts said more than half of the budget may go toward just remediation and relocation costs.

Supporters of the Los Angeles bid have said the city will more likely see a surplus, saying that unlike other cities, Los Angeles already has many of the needed sporting venues in place.

The Olympic Village would be next to the Los Angeles River in Lincoln Heights -- in a Union Pacific rail yard known as the "Piggyback Yard" -- and calls for track-and-field and the opening and closing ceremonies to be held at a renovated Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Los Angeles previously hosted the Olympics in 1932 and 1984.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Steve Powell/Allsport]]>
<![CDATA[Illinois Students' ACT Score Ranks Highest Among 13 States]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 08:31:53 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/scantron_test_generic.jpg

Illinois students had one of the highest composite ACT scores out of all 13 states that administer the test, the Illinois State Board of Education announced.

The class of 2015 tied Colorado for the highest average composite score, boasting a 20.7.

“Illinois has been a longtime leader in helping students realize their college potential by providing all 11th-graders access to college entrance exams,” State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith said in a statement.

Officials noted that 63 percent of Illinois’ graduating seniors had benchmark scores in English, 41 percent had benchmark scores in math and reading and 37 percent had benchmark scores in science.

A benchmark score indicates the student has a 50 percent chance of earning a B or higher or a 75 percent chance of getting a C or higher in the corresponding college course.

The state’s composite score, however, falls below the national average of 21, which is based primarily on scores of self-selected, college-bound students.

The ACT is scored on a scale of 1 to 36, with 36 being the highest possible score.

<![CDATA[Obama to Call for More Icebreakers to Catch Russia in Arctic]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 08:16:49 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_896302240165.jpg

President Barack Obama is set to on Tuesday that the United States buy or build more icebreakers for the Coast Guard in the Arctic Ocean, citing a growing gap with Russia in a quickly evolving region.

As sea ice melts because of climate change, marine traffic for mining, shipping and tourism is expected to increase in the Arctic.

The United States has only two fully functioning icebreakers in its fleet — and only one capable of heavy-duty work, the White House said. By comparison, Russia has 40 in its fleet and 11 more planned or being built.

Obama will also call for stepping up the American scientific research in the Arctic "to increase our understanding of this vital region."

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Serial Sniper? 4 Vehicles Shot Along Phoenix Interstate]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 07:58:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/tlmd_police_tape_lights_generic21.jpg

Officials are investigating four separate shootings at cars over three days along I-10 in Arizona, NBC News reported. It was not immediately clear if the incidents were related. 

Multiple rounds were fired in all of the incidents, according to NBC station KPNX. Investigators believe the shooter was also in a vehicle traveling on I-10, KPNX reported.

The shooting occurred on Saturday just after 11 a.m. local time when a sport utility vehicle was fired upon and struck, according to a statement from the Arizona Department of Public Safety. A teen girl riding in the passenger seat was treated on the scene for a cut to her right ear.

Minutes later, according to officials, a bus traveling in the opposite direction was hit by a bullet. There were no injuries. The third shooting was later that night and on Monday a bullet hit a work truck en route to a work site.

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<![CDATA[Skyway Workers Prepare for Labor Day Weekend Strike]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 07:51:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/cms655.jpg

Traffic may be moving smoothly along Chicago’s Skyway for the start of September, but it could come to a halt during the busy Labor Day travel weekend.

A group of toll collectors may hold a strike over contract negotiations with the Skyway Concession Company, according to Teamsters Local 727, the union that represents them. The 30 workers are on the job without a contract – which expired at midnight – and the members are set to hold a strike vote on September 2. 

The union said most of the workers make $11 dollars an hour and have no medical insurance benefits because they are part time employees. Only five are full time, according to the union.

It also noted that despite the fact that Skyway Concession Company has increased Skyway tolls twice in the last two years, the company has not hired more full-time staff.

Local 727 representatives have already started strike preparations ahead of the vote. The union warned that commuters may experience excessive delays on the Chicago Skyway during Labor Day weekend should the employees walk off the job.

“The ball is in management’s court,” John Coli Jr., president of Teamsters Local 727, said in a statement. “The company can either do the right thing and come together to reach a fair agreement, or it can force our members out on the picket line to fight for the wages, benefits and working conditions they deserve.”

Chicago’s Skyway didn't immediately respond to NBC Chicago's request for comment.

<![CDATA[Pope Speaks to Chicago Students Via Satellite]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 05:44:58 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Pope-Francis-La-Paz-Bolivia-8-July-2015.jpg

Speaking from the Vatican, Pope Francis offered advice to students at a Chicago high school and answered their questions on Monday via satellite.

As part of an ABC Television Network special, the pope spoke in Spanish with groups in three U.S. cities that he is not scheduled to visit during his upcoming trip. Students at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School on the Lower West Side were among the lucky audience.

"I couldn't believe it," one student said. "Talking with the pope is a goal ... it was something marvelous."

Another student described Pope Francis as very caring, saying he gave them advice and told them they are brave.

The pope also spoke to groups at Sacred Heart Catholic Parish in McAllen, Texas, and at a center for the homeless near Skid Row in Los Angeles.

Each group was able to greet the pope, share their own stories with him and ask a question, according to the Holy See Press Office.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[U.S. Stocks Drop at Open After Bleak China Report]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:10:09 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_456651566735.jpg

U.S. stocks plunged at the opening bell Tuesday after more data in China pointed to a sharp slowdown in the world's No. 2 economy, NBC News reported. 

Dow Jones industrial average fell more than 342 points a few minutes after the open.

Ahead of Tuesday's trading, the New York Stock Exchange invoked the little-used Rule 48 to pre-empt panic trading after implementing it three times in a row last week, CNBC reported. 

Data out overnight in China showed manufacturing there shrinking at the fastest pace in three years. China is an engine of the world economy and a major market for American goods.

Investors are also nervous about the prospect that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates soon.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Day Care Workers Force-Fed Tots]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 07:49:59 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/side+by+side+day+care+workers.jpg

Two day care teachers on Long Island were arrested after investigators say they force-fed, pushed and slammed children onto the floor, according to authorities. 

Kathleen Culver, 33, of Southampton, and Sarah M. Dawber, 23, of Mastic Beach, were arrested Friday after an investigation into allegations of abuse at Side by Side Day Care in Southampton, police said. 

The women, who worked in the infant room at the day care, are accused of roughly handling children ranging in age from 4 months old to 18 months old. 

One 18-month-old child vomited from the alleged force-feeding, police said. No other injuries have been reported. 

A complaint filed with police led to an investigation by Southampton police, the New York State Office of Children and Family Services, and Suffolk County Child Protective Services after a complaint was filed with the police department.  

Culver and Dawber were arrested by detectives during a visit to the day care Friday. 

The workers were processed and released on desk appearance tickets for misdemeanor child endangerment, police said. They're expected to appear in court at a later date. 

Messages were left with the day care. Attorney information for Culver and Dawber wasn't immediately available. 

Two mothers went to the day care Monday night to pack up their children's belongings. They said they do not plan to bring their children back to the center. 

"I'm not comfortable leaving my child in a place where something like this goes on," said Sharon Sweeney. "This says to me they're not caring about the quality of people they're hiring to take care of these children, whether or not they're special needs children. I'm not comfortable with what I'm hearing so I decided to come tonight to take my son's wheelchair in case they decide to close up and not tell the parents what's going on."

Sarah Chapman, whose son has been going to the day care for the past two years, said she's recently seen too many red flags, including stories from a former roommate and parent whose autistic son came home and said teachers there would hit him on the buttocks with a stuffed animal.

"Neither of us will be back," she said, adding that her own mother once worked there and left the day care, along with many other "good people who worked there," because of the low pay. 

"This is what you get for that," said Chapman. 

Photo Credit: Southampton Police]]>
<![CDATA[Thai PM: Prime Suspect in Bangkok Shrine Bombing Arrested]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 06:07:16 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Bangkok+Suspect.jpg

Thailand's prime minister said Tuesday that authorities have arrested a man they believe is the main suspect in a bombing at a shrine in central Bangkok two weeks ago that killed 20 people.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said the man is a foreigner and was arrested in eastern Thailand near the Cambodian border. He described him as the main person in the bombing but did not directly say he is suspected of actually planting the bomb.

It was not immediately known if the arrested man is the person who was seen in a security video wearing a yellow T-shirt and leaving a backpack at the shrine shortly before the blast there.

Photo Credit: Reuters]]>
<![CDATA[Yahoo Chief Mayer Says She's Pregnant With Twins]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:14:08 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_770174843123.jpg

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer says she's pregnant with identical twins.

Mayer says on a posting on her blog that she and her husband are expecting the twin girls in December.

"I have some exciting news to share - I'm pregnant!" she says on her Tumblr posting Monday night.

She says that she will take some limited time away but work during the pregnancy as she did with her son's birth three years ago.

Mayer says that she's informed Yahoo executives of her pregnancy.

Three years ago, Mayer announced she was pregnant with her son on her social networking accounts just a few hours after Yahoo hired her as its third full-time CEO in less than a year.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[2 Officers, Person Injured in Squad Car Crash]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 06:12:55 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/212*120/Crash-Police.jpg

Two police officers and a person were injured when a squad car was hit by a vehicle on Chicago's South Side, according to police.

The squad car was traveling northbound on May Street in the city’s Englewood neighborhood around 12:15 a.m. headed to a call in progress, police said. A gray Ford Taurus struck a parked car before hitting the squad car on 73rd Street.

Two officers and the person who was driving the Taurus were taken to Christ hospital with injuries that are not life threatening, according to police.

The driver of the Taurus will face numerous citations over the crash, police said.

<![CDATA[Georgia Cop, Homeowner Shot, Dog Killed After Police Respond to Wrong Home]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 23:45:23 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/4596346721.jpg

A metro Atlanta police officer was in critical condition after he, a homeowner and a dog were shot when police responded to a call at the wrong house, authorities said.

Officers responded to a call for a burglary in progress about 7:30 p.m. ET, but they went to the wrong address because the caller gave only a description of a "gray brick house" without a street number, Cedric Alexander, public safety director in DeKalb County, said.

The officer was wounded in the thigh and "lost a lot of blood," Alexander said. The homeowner's condition wasn't reported, but the dog was killed, he added.

Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[UN: Satellite Images Show Syria's Temple of Bel 'Destroyed']]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 23:23:00 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_578517027570.jpg

An ancient temple in Syria's Palmyra has been destroyed, a monitoring group with the United Nations said Monday after an explosion sparked speculation that ISIS had blown up the historic site, NBC News reported.

Witnesses told The Associated Press Monday that ISIS militants, who captured Palmyra in May, significantly damaged the 2,000 year old Temple of Bel by bombing it. And an ISIS operative, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told the AP over Skype on Monday that militants had detonated explosives near the temple.

The United Nations Institute for Training and Research said that satellite analysis confirmed that the main building at the temple has been demolished.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Emanuel Gets Heat at 1st Town Hall Budget Meeting]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 22:34:05 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/emanuel1.png

City Hall prepared for disruptions Monday night in Mayor Emanuel’s first of three town hall meetings to discuss the city’s budget, and that is exactly what they got.

With key city department heads and staff present, it was all part of the mayor's re-election pledge to listen to residents, but many in the crowd could not contain their frustration.

“My child just got bus services cut,” expressed one distressed parent. “I own my house, my taxes went up so my mortgage went up. I can’t even pull out of my garage my streets are so raggedy.”

Before the meeting began many even refused to accept the mayor’s handshake.

Despite several layers of security to even reach the Malcolm X College gymnasium at 1900 West Van Buren Street, and almost 10 minutes of admonishments to be polite, the first public hearing on the 2016 budget was at times as out of control as the financial crisis appears.

“Every year we ask for our basic rights and services,” one attendee argued.

As always, the mayor's challenge is to somehow manage the needs and wants with the must-haves.

“Removing of extracurricular programs like art like physical education does nothing to teach our children,” said another frustrated parent.

The mayor listened to all of the backlash, sometimes uncomfortably.

Public pressure led to a second, private meeting with schools CEO Forrest Claypool on the hunger strikers from Dyett High School pushing for a new building instead of a closed one.

“I want to thank you all for participating,” Mayor Emanuel said. “Thank you for your ideas, those of you who came to talk about budget and as I mentioned Forrest will be meeting to talk about Dyett and I will be joining him there.”

Chicago Public Schools CEO Forrest Claypool said the fate of Dyett High School is still under discussion.

Mayor Emanuel committed to following up with money saving ideas involving things such as street lights, but the overriding budget challenge remains the pension debt and the hope that Springfield will pass reform.

The next meetings are to be held Sept. 2 at South Shore Cultural Center (7059 South South Shore Drive) and Sept. 3 at Wright College (4300 North Narragansett Avenue).

Both are meetings are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m., but doors will open at 5:30 p.m. They are open to all interested residents. Emanuel will present the 2016 budget to City Council on Sept. 22.

Emanuel said the meetings are "to discuss the City's current budget outlook and solicit savings, reform and revenue ideas from residents to assist in the preparation of the 2016 budget."

Residents can voice their ideas at the town hall meetings or via social media using the hashtag #ChiBudget2016.

<![CDATA[Arrieta, Cubs Rock Pajamas After No-Hitter Sunday]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 05:39:36 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-486027192.jpg

The Chicago Cubs were already preparing for a pajama-themed plane ride home from Los Angeles on Sunday night, but pitcher Jake Arrieta ensured that it would be a party as he tossed a no-hitter in a 2-0 win over the Dodgers.

Predictably, the evening got fun in a hurry for the Cubs.

To start with, Arrieta arrived at his postgame press conference wearing a mustache-onesie. Here is a picture of the garment, along with the catcher that called Arrieta’s no-hitter:

Anthony Rizzo chimed in with his emoji-themed pajamas, and he was joined by several of his teammates, including Addison Russell and Kris Bryant:


Onsie trip LA✈️CHI

A photo posted by Anthony Rizzo (@arizz_44) on

Some players, including outfielder Matt Szczur, went with the Superman look:


#teamonesies #nohitter

A photo posted by Matt Szczur (@superszcz4) on

While others, including relief pitcher Tommy Hunter, celebrated by sporting their favorite school’s colors:

Of course, it wouldn’t be a night without seeing what the architect of the pajama party had up his sleeve, and manager Joe Maddon didn’t disappoint as he channeled his inner Maverick and went with the Top Gun look:

Now everybody please gather for a group photo:

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Blaze Tears Through Historic Chicago Bowling Alley]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 17:26:57 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lincoln+square+lanes+fire+after.jpg

One of Chicago’s oldest bowling alleys, Lincoln Square Lanes, was engulfed in flames early Monday morning on the city’s North Side.

Fire officials said the three-alarm blaze started around 1 a.m. in the 4800 block of North Lincoln Avenue.

The fire started on the second floor of the historic building, which featured the newly remodeled bowling alley on the second floor and a hardware store on the first floor. The roof of the venue collapsed in the flames.

At one point, a mayday was called for a missing firefighter, but fire officials said that firefighter was later accounted for and was looked at at the scene. 

"Shortly after that elevation of the alarm, there was a report of a firefighter missing," said Deputy Fire Commissioner Anthony Vasquez. "A mayday alarm was called at that time. They thought a member was missing but he was just unaccounted for and safe."

Two firefighters were hospitalized with minor injuries, according to Chief Juan Reyes. 

The cause of the fire may have been the grill in the building, according to Chicago Fire media affairs, but investigators had not yet to entered the building. Officials said the cause remained under investigation Monday morning.

Lincoln Square Lanes opened in 1918 and is said to be the city's oldest operating bowling alley, according to its website. Building owner Dave Drehobl, whose family has run the bowling alley for 30 years, said the fire was "devastating."

“I think it’s going to be a disappointment for a lot of people because it was a great place to go to and it had a lot of meories to a lot of people," he said. "It’s really sad, it’s real sad."

A post on Lincoln Square Lane's Facebook page thanked customers for "continued love and support."

"It is with heavy hearts that we bid our customers a saddened farewell," the post read. "We will cherish the memories you have left us with. It is our hope that this historic alley will remain in your thoughts. The LSL family would like to thank you for your continued love and support as we look forward to the future."

Lincoln Avenue remained closed as of 6 a.m. from Winnemac to Western Avenue as firefighters remained at the scene. Western Avenue was closed from Winnemac to Lawrence as firefighters battled the blaze, but the roadway reopened shortly after 5:30 a.m. The Chicago Transit Authority’s no. 49 bus was also being rerouted Monday morning. 

ComEd said about 400 people in the area were without power Monday morning as a result of the fire, but power was expected to be restored later Monday morning.

<![CDATA[7 Hours of Sleep Helps Prevent Colds, Study Finds]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 20:31:21 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sleep-GettyImages-547017105.jpg

If you're loading up on vitamin C and zinc to stave off the sniffles, you should try an earlier bedtime instead. People who regularly sleep six hours or less each night are four times more likely to get a cold than people who sleep just an hour longer, a new study finds.

Short sleep was more important than any other factor in predicting who would get sick after exposure to the cold virus, researchers told NBC News.

"It's almost alarming how strong the effects are," says Aric Prather, an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco and lead author of the study, published Monday in the journal Sleep.

Sleep was more important than any other factor, including age, stress or income level, in predicting who would get sick after being exposure to the cold virus, the researchers say.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Hero Images]]>
<![CDATA[Playoff-Hopeful Cubs Get OF Austin Jackson From Seattle]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 19:38:01 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/183*120/GettyImages-485034424.jpg

The Chicago Cubs acquired outfielder Austin Jackson from the Seattle Mariners on Monday, boosting their depth for their run at a possible playoff spot.

Chicago sent a player to be named and an international draft slot to the Mariners. The Cubs, who also got cash back in the deal, then designated infielder Mike Olt for assignment to make room on the roster.

Because the deal was made before Sept. 1, Jackson will be eligible for the postseason if the Cubs get that far. Chicago began the day with a 5 1/2-game lead over San Francisco for the second NL wild card.

"Austin Jackson — I've seen him for a long time in the American League. He's a really good player," said manager Joe Maddon, who is in his first year with the Cubs after a long run with Tampa Bay.

"When he starts swinging the bat well, he's very productive, fine outfielder, good baserunner, stolen bases. (He's) kind of a complete player so to be able to pick him up right now — we're very fortunate."

Jackson had been set to lead off and play center field Monday night at Houston. He was scratched more than hour before gametime.

The 28-year-old Jackson was traded from Detroit to the Mariners in July 2014. He was hitting .272 with eight homers and 38 RBIs in 107 games this season.

The Cubs placed right fielder Jorge Soler on the disabled list on Aug. 24 with a strained left oblique, and center fielder Dexter Fowler has been banged up. Jackson also could help improve the Cubs' defense, maybe as a late-inning replacement in left for Kyle Schwarber.

"Just with the depth component, you never know what's going to happen during the course of the next month," Maddon said.

Mariners interim general manager Jeff Kingston announced the trade Monday night.

"Obviously we would prefer to be buyers than sellers at this point, but I think for us and the Seattle Mariners at this point in time, it's more about the future, looking ahead and trying to balance the short-term with the long-term," he said.

Kingston took over last week after Jack Zduriencik was fired. The Mariners have had a disappointing season and were 61-70 when they made the trade.

After the trade was announced, Ketel Marte was inserted into the Seattle lineup at shortstop and Brad Miller moved from shortstop to center field.

Kingston said one of the benefits of the trade is that Miller will get more time in center.

"I think we'd like to see quite a bit of it," Kingston said. "I just spoke to (manager) Lloyd (McClendon) about it and I think that at this point in time that's probably his best fit for this organization going forward. We think he has the components and skillset to play out there. If he can play out there it's a huge asset to this organization."

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Hunger Strikers Continue Protest to Save Dyett School]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 17:49:04 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000014012221_1200x675_516680771973.jpg Hunger strikers entered their third week of protest today as they headed back to City Hall. They're trying to get Chicago Public Schools to accept their proposal to replace, not close, Dyett High School in Bronzeville. ]]> <![CDATA[McCarthy Illustrates Need for Stricter Gun Laws]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 17:49:25 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000014012110_1200x675_516676163899.jpg A clearly frustrated Chicago police superintendent is once again calling for stricter gun laws. Garry McCarthy displayed more than 4,800 guns taken off Chicago streets just this year. NBC 5’s Dick Johnson has more.]]> <![CDATA[Young Bears Fan Names Brain Tumor 'Aaron Rodgers']]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 16:49:01 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1-1-1-483903152.jpg

A young Chicago Bears fan battling cancer is using his love of the team to fight the disease.

Miguel Reyes, of Elkhart, Indiana, has a brain tumor that causes him to have seizures, according to The Elkhart Truth. The 14-year-old receives support from his former teacher Peg Kelly, who is a Green Bay Packers fan.

"I said, ‘You need to name that tumor so we can kill it,'” Kelly told the publication. “You know what he named it? Rodgers. Aaron Rodgers. What a stinker!"

Despite the name choice, Kelly is very supportive as Reyes endures weight loss and nausea from his chemotherapy. She even bought Reyes a German shepherd that she hopes can be trained to detect when Reyes will have a seizure.

The Reyes family started a GoFundMe page to pay to train the dog. The boy loves the pup, but "she is just too strong for him to control right now and really needs to be trained so that she can be with Miguel all the time," the family said on the page.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA['Ready for Kanye' Fundraising Committee Formed]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 18:29:53 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/182*120/AP_39405329070.jpg

Kanye West officially has a fundraising committee behind his 2020 presidential run, which the Chicago rapper declared Sunday night during the MTV Video Music Awards.

A man in Maryland filed the "Ready for Kanye" PAC with the Federal Election Commission Monday. Eugene Craig III, who filed the PAC, is listed as both the custodian or records and the treasurer.

Although the committee was made official with the FEC filing, it's entirely possible the fundraising campaign was created in jest, just as Deez Nuts and a Labrador from the Chicago suburbs officially launched presidential campaigns with their FEC filings.

Craig, however, told the Washington Post that he would "absolutely encourage (West) to run" in 2020 if there wasn't an incumbent Republican president.

"I think he will bring an interesting dialogue to our party, and he'll find a lot of people who want that dialogue," Craig told the Washington Post. "He's pointed out the crippling racial disparities in the law and the economy. He's talked about the pipeline of private prisons. He's a genuine entrepreneur. Oh, not to mention that his first big single was 'Jesus Walks.'" 

According to the Washington Post, Craig is a 24-year-old African-American Republican activist from Maryland, who runs the Young Minority Republicans Fund.

A Facebook page created for the "Ready for Kanye" PAC shows t-shirts that say "Kanye 2020" and "Kanye West '20" and a description that asks voters to "like" the page to "show the world we are ready for President West!"

In a rambling speech during the MTV Music Video Awards, West admitted he got high before entering the stage, where he apologized to Taylor Swift for taking her microphone in 2009 and claimed he would run for president in 2020.

Photo Credit: Matt Sayles/Invision/AP]]>
<![CDATA[Sanders, Trump Surge in New Iowa Poll]]> Sun, 30 Aug 2015 19:27:13 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/trumpsanders.jpg

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and businessman Donald Trump — the two biggest anti-establishment candidates in the Democratic and Republican presidential primary fields, respectively — have seen their support surge, according to NBC News, citing a new survey of voters likely to participate in the Iowa caucuses.

In the Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics poll, Sanders is now polling just seven points behind Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton, nearly doubling his share of the vote since the last survey was conducted in May.

Sanders takes 30 percent support, while Clinton draws 37 percent, marking the first time she's dropped below 50 percent in the poll.

Trump, meanwhile, has seen a remarkable reversal in both his support and popularity in the state since May. Back then, he was polling at just 4 percent support and his favorability was at -36 points; now, he leads the pack with 23 percent support and his favorability is at +26 points.

Photo Credit: File - Getty]]>
<![CDATA[Hester Criticizes Cutler's Approach in New Interview ]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 15:23:36 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/devin+hester+falcons.jpg

There is a growing list of former Bears teammates and coaches who have strong feelings about Jay Cutler, and another player joined that group on Monday when Devin Hester weighed in with some criticism of the quarterback.

Speaking in an interview with ESPN reporter Vaughn McClure, Hester compared Cutler to Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, and the comparison was not a favorable one:

“If we weren’t on the same page, Jay just didn’t say anything to me,” Hester said. “He just wouldn’t (throw) to me. That’s just how he was.

“With Matt, if he sees something that he feels needs to be changed, he’ll come to you and say, ‘Hey man, what do you think about doing it this way? It will give us a clearer look, and I’ll be able to get the ball to you.”

Hester was frequently included on offensive plays during Lovie Smith’s time as Bears head coach, but when Marc Trestman took over in 2013, Hester was no longer included in the playbook, ostensibly to work on his kick return game.

Hester is not the only former Bears player to criticize Cutler after leaving Chicago, joining a list that includes Brandon Marshall, Brian Urlacher and Lance Briggs, among others.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Illinois Community Colleges Rank Low on National List]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 14:14:14 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/classroom+generic1.jpg

In time for the start of a new school year, the results of a study were released analyzing and ranking the best and worst community colleges in the country.

Compared to other states, Illinois falls a little short on the list of best colleges in the report by personal finance website WalletHub. Overall, Illinois ranked 34th as a state, but only one college in the state made it into the top 100.

The highest ranking community college in Illinois, according to the study, is Shawnee Community College in Ullin, which is located in the far southern part of the state near Kentucky. The college ranked No. 92 overall, but it came in an impressive first place in the "career outcomes" category. The school's overall rank was much lower than No. 1 because its rank in the other categories — No. 481 in cost and financing, No. 64 in classroom experience and No. 214 in education outcomes.

A total of 19 schools, including Shawnee Community College, made the top 500:

Shawnee Community College (92)
Kankakee Community College (188)
Carl Sandburg College (194)
Olive-Harvey College (221)
College of Lake County (250)
Elgin Community College (304)
Harper College (327)
Spoon River College (343)
Rend Lake College (366)
Morton College (377)
Illinois Valley Community College (381)
Kennedy-King College (412)
McHenry County College (427)
Lake Land College (438)
Prairie State College (460)
Highland Community College (481)
Truman College (494)
Lincoln Land Community College (494)
Oakton Community College (498)

Another Chicago school — Richard J. Daley College — did not make the top 500 list, but it was highlighted for its low cost for students (No. 651). It was also listed as the school with the highest student-to-faculty ratio out of all 670 schools ranked.

WalletHub rated schools based on several factors, including cost of in-state tuition, fees, student-faculty ratio, overall classroom experience and education and career outcomes.

The top 10 community colleges are, in order, North Florida Community College, Dine College in Arizona, Chipola College in Florida, Northwest College in Wyoming, Taft College in California, Itawamba Community College in Mississippi, Southwestern Community College in North Carolina, Guttman Community College in New York, Patrick Henry Community College in Virginia and Southwest Virginia Community College in Virginia.

A second list ranking the best states for community colleges named Mississippi as No. 1, followed by North Dakota and Wyoming.

Photo Credit: Newsworks ]]>
<![CDATA[Surveillance Video Shows Suburban 'Smash-and-Grab']]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 17:35:24 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/185*120/smash+and+grab.png

Thieves smashed an SUV into a recently opened clothing store in Lansing and stole over $10,000 worth of merchandise, according to police and the store owner.

Video surveillance from retailer Tops and Bottoms located at 16711 Torrence Avenue showed a tan 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer crashing into the business around 4:30 a.m. Monday, the Lansing Police Department said in a press release.

The driver left the Trailblazer and was met by five other men who had pulled up in a white van with black lettering, according to police.

Five of the suspects grabbed an armful of clothing while a driver stayed in the white van, police said. Store owner Anis Kassim said the men left with over 70 pairs of blue jeans that sell for $150 to $200 each.

Kassim also said the thieves were in and out of the store in two minutes. Officers responding to the scene located the Trailblazer, which was unoccupied and running.

The incident was the third time the thieves tried to steal from the store, which opened a month and a half ago, according to Kassim.

The Lansing Police Department is asking for witnesses or people with information about the theft to contact them at 708-895-7150.

<![CDATA[SCOTUS to Act on Kentucky Gay Marriage Fight]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 12:33:51 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/gaymarriageflag.jpg

The U.S. Supreme Court this week faces the first religious objection to reach the justices since the decision declaring a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, NBC News reported.

A county clerk in Kentucky is asking for relief from a lower court order directing her to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. Her lawyers filed an emergency application directed to Justice Elena Kagan, who handles such requests from that part of the country.

Kim Davis, the clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky, "holds an undisputed sincerely held religious belief that marriage is a union between a man and a woman, only," her lawyers say in their application.

The requirement to issue same-sex marriage licenses "demands that she either fall in line or leave office."

Photo Credit: CQ-Roll Call,Inc.]]>
<![CDATA[Arrest in Case of Man Lit on Fire]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 18:25:13 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/man+on+fire+astoria.jpg

A 46-year-old woman angry over alleged infidelity has been charged with murder for allegedly shooting her boyfriend twice and then lighting him on fire, leaving his body to burn in the street over the weekend, police said.

Firefighters were called to 12th Street in Astoria shortly before 7 a.m. Saturday after getting a call about a fire and found the Shawn McWhorter, 43, ablaze. They put out the fire and McWhorter was pronounced dead at the scene.

A fingernail was found on his body.

McWhorter lived in the area, so detectives began to interview people he knew as part of their routine investigation, including his girlfriend, Dawn Mcintosh. Mcintosh told police she hadn't seen him that day, they had been supposed to meet but he stood her up, authorities say she told detectives.

While detectives were talking to Mcintosh, they noticed she was missing a fingernail, NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said Monday. Mcintosh was taken into custody for additional questioning, and admitted to killing her boyfriend, Boyce said. Boyce said Mcintosh told police she shot McWhorter twice in the torso, then got her son to try to help her move the body into a friend's car.

McWhorter was too heavy for McIntosh and her son, according to investigators, so they allegedly moved the body a bit and then lit it on fire. McIntosh told police she doused her boyfriend in lighter fluid and lit him aflame using a cigarette lighter. Boyce said Mcintosh accused her boyfriend of infidelity and treating her poorly; she also said he owed her money.

Boyce said authorities are looking for the gun Mcintosh allegedly used in the shooting.

Mcintosh's son , 21-year-old Donte Watkins, was arrested for allegedly helping his mother move the body. He was charged with tampering with physical evidence.

Mcintosh's daughter was also present when the body was moved, but she will not face charges because she did not assist in the crime, according to investigators. The friend who owns the car the mother and son allegedly tried to move the body into did not know it was happening, police said.

Information on attorneys for the suspects wasn't immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>