<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Chicago News]]>Copyright 2017https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago https://www.nbcchicago.comen-usThu, 23 Nov 2017 18:37:42 -0600Thu, 23 Nov 2017 18:37:42 -0600NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Chicagoans Step Up to Help Minnesota Carjacking Victim]]> Thu, 23 Nov 2017 18:19:03 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/CARJACKING+-+00000718_29806434.jpg

Donna Hart didn’t know she’d have much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving just days after she was held up at gunpoint outside of her family’s home.

Hart drove in from Minnesota and on Tuesday, when she went to grab some of her belongings from her car in Chatham, two men approached her with a gun.

They demanded her keys and purse. She tried her best not to panic.

“I had to stay calm because I didn’t want to be killed over a car,” she said.

She did just that as she walked back into the home on South Wabash.

“My whole focus was, they’re not going in this house," Hart said. "I didn’t want them in the house to hurt my family, so whatever they was going to do, they was going to do to me.”

Police found the car and it now sits in an impound lot.

Hart doesn’t have her keys, she says, and it will cost $300 to get in to the car.

But, that’s where some kind-hearted Chicagoans come in.

Activists Dawn Valenti and Andrew Holmes chipped in a complete stranger, Chris Harris also stepped forward to help.

His daughter was carjacked last year.

"I just hope that she realizes that she can come home and she can be happy,” he told NBC 5.

“I wanted her to know that this city does care and that there’s still some good in this city,” Valenti said.

While holding a press conference, a woman passed by and had to stop.

Antoinette bradley- passerby donated to victim

“Leaving church, took a little turn down this road, never turned down this road and here you guys were standing with the young lady I wanted to bless," passerby Antoinette Bradley said. "So, I have $200 here and I wanted to just bless you with this because it hurts my heart.”

Strangers helping strangers, a true display of giving thanks.

A GoFundMe has been set up to continue helping Hart.

<![CDATA[Chicago Chef Gives Back With Thanksgiving Turkeys]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 23:28:06 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WEB_6P_MAD_CHICAGO_CHEF_GIVES_BACK.jpg For the fourth year in a row, Turkey Chop owner Quentin Love has given away turkeys for Thanksgiving. LeeAnn Trotter reports.]]> <![CDATA[Can Busy Shoppers Cut Wait Times With Click And Pickup?]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 23:18:54 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/coffeyshopping_29794454.jpg

If you would rather skip long store lines and delivery times, grab your smartphone or computer for what retailers are calling a speedier way to shop online.

A growing number of retailers now offer “buy online, pickup in store” shopping experiences for their customers, in which everything you order is ready for same-day collection. That means no more browsing store aisles, searching for sizes, or waiting several days for an online purchase to be delivered.

Retailers say they’ll have orders complete within a few hours. But is the process as easy as they make it out to be?

NBC 5 Investigates, along with CNBC and our NBC sister stations in San Diego and Dallas, ordered dozens of items for same-day pickup. We purchased merchandise from six retailers and waited for alerts to say the items were ready.

The idea was to see how easy the process is overall for consumers and how much time it took from online check-out to when the order was ready for pickup.

Thirty-seven minutes after NBC 5 Investigates ordered two sweaters, a glass candle holder, a card game and lotion from Target’s website, we received a pickup alert from the store in suburban Hodgkins. Once inside the store, we were asked to show identification at the customer service counter. All of our items were included in the bag.

“We’re proud that Order Pickup consistently receives high satisfaction marks from guests, and that more than 95 percent of Order Pickup orders are ready in less than an hour for guests at their local Target store,” said a Target spokesperson.

We received a notification from Kohl’s in Hodgkins less than one hour after confirming a purchase for bedding and baby items. Our identification and a barcode from a confirmation email were required for the pickup.

Pick-up alerts from Home Depot in Broadview and Macy’s in Oak Brook came within two hours. Both stores required order confirmations and everything we ordered was at the stores’ customer service desks.

It took nearly three hours for us to hear that our order was ready at Wal-Mart in Hodgkins. We walked to the back of the store to the online pickup counter and entered our email address in a computer kiosk. All of our items were handed-over to us within a few minutes.

Still, consumers should be prepared to adjust their orders when shopping online for same-day pickup because some items may not be available at your store of choice.

A spokesperson for Home Depot said the retailer has approximately 35,000 SKUs in the store but more than one million online.

NBC 5 Investigates ordered a shower caddy, Christmas tree stand, tree skirt, and surge protector for same-day pickup at the Lowe’s location on North Narragansett Avenue in Chicago. About two hours and fifty minutes after clicking the online purchase button, we received a call from a store employee telling us that the tree stand and skirt would not be available.

“We’re always working to improve the customer experience,” said a Lowe’s spokesperson. “In 2018, we will introduce new capabilities to our buy online pick up in store program, including dedicated parking spots, specific pick-up desks and at high volume stores, employees dedicated to filling orders.”

Overall, our combined shopping experiences from across the country resulted in the following “ready for pick-up” rankings for the six retailers:

1. Target-order ready averaged 33 minutes

2. Kohl’s-order ready averaged 46 minutes

3. Home Depot-order ready averaged 1 hour 15 minutes

4. Macy’s-order ready averaged 2 hours 11 minutes

5. Lowe’s-order ready averaged 2 hours 45 minutes

6. Wal-Mart-order ready averaged 6 hours 32 minutes

Our Dallas affiliate placed its order with Wal-Mart just before 5 p.m with same-day pickup as a stated option, but the email and text notifying the team it was ready for pickup didn’t come until after 9 a.m. the next day.

A Wal-Mart spokesperson said “while we don’t share our average order time externally, we can say it’s quite a bit less than what the CNBC/NBC affiliates experienced.”

A recent study by JDA Consumer Survey found a 44% increase in “buy online, pick-up in store” shopping since 2015.

“I can go out and pick it up after I get off work, before I pick up the kids from school,” said Dr. Jim Mourey of DePaul University. “That’s the sort of convenience that they’re reaching out to. Just sort of steal those customers back from companies like Amazon.”

Mourey, who studies consumer psychology, said this marketing method is not entirely new. However, he said retailers are giving more options to customers who prefer convenience and those who enjoy browsing.

“If companies like Target continue to change in this very innovative way, I think everyone can benefit,” Mourey said. “My guess is for retail stores that are going to be around the next five or ten years, they’re gonna have to do the same thing.”

While a 2015 survey showed 40% of consumers who picked up online orders say they experienced some sort of service issue, such as a long wait, the retailers we recently visited said they are working hard to provide a fast and easy experience for shoppers and they are making more items available for same-day pickup.

“It’s so popular that we’ve tripled the number of items available,” said a Wal-Mart spokesperson.

The Target spokesperson said about one-third of the shoppers who come in for Order Pickup orders also make additional purchases.

<![CDATA[Fairley, Emanuel Continue War of Words Over Budget]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 18:23:01 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Fairley+11-22.png

Just one day after she criticized the city of Chicago’s budget over concerns that funding was inadequate for the Community Office of Police Accountability, Illinois Attorney General candidate Sharon Fairley is in a war of words with Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office.

Fairley, one of eight Democrats running for the position that will be vacated by Attorney General Lisa Madigan in 2019, took issue with a lack of funding for the program, which she ran for two years.

“I’m not trying to pick a fight here,” she said. “In my professional opinion, after spending two years running the agencies, I feel this budget is inadequate.”

The mayor’s office criticized Fairley for her statements, saying she didn’t express concerns while she was in charge of COPA.  

“As a candidate for office, she is now taking issue with the budget process,” a spokesman for the mayor said.

Fairley says that she isn’t interested in continuing a public battle with the mayor’s office, saying that she was just trying to express her opinion on a topic that she had experience on.

“I’m not going to be baited by him,” she said. “I’m just trying to give the benefit of my professional experience to the citizens of Chicago.”

The back-and-forth between Emanuel and Fairley is adding fuel to what will already be a fascinating attorney general’s race, as candidates will begin officially filing their campaign petitions on Monday morning. 

<![CDATA[Indiana Teacher Arrested For Having Drugs at School: Police]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 22:36:53 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/ST+JOHN+SNAP+-+00004225_29794084.jpg

A 24-year-old Indiana teacher was arrested Wednesday after students at the school where she teaches tipped off the principal, police said.

Samantha Cox, of Northwest Indiana and a teacher at Lake Central High School, is being held at Lake County Jail pending charges of possession of controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

A student at the school shared video of a woman in a classroom shuffling in a corner that was reportedly then shown to school officials.

The father of the student confirmed to NBC 5 his son was the one who shot the video.

St. John police were notified of a teacher suspected of possessing an illegal narcotic on school property about 11:30 a.m., authorities said.

School officials and police praised the student witnesses for bringing the information to the principal of the school.

“Their actions showed a tremendous amount of fortitude and integrity and enabled staff to address this situation promptly,” police said in a statement.

No other information was immediately available.

<![CDATA[How to Watch Macy's Thanksgiving Parade Live Anywhere]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 21:51:35 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/macy+parade.jpg

The iconic Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade kicks off the holiday season with its annual march down the streets of Manhattan on Thursday, Nov. 23, featuring legendary 50-foot balloons, bands, dance numbers and celebs.

Coverage starts at 9 a.m. on NBC 5, and you can watch it all live at home on NBC or on the go via NBC Live. Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie and Al Roker of "Today" will anchor the broadcast. 

You can live stream the parade on NBCChicago.com on your desktop or laptop computer or your mobile device by clicking on this link (http://www.nbcchicago.com/live). You can also watch the coverage on our free app -- download it from iTunes here or from Google Play here. We temporarily removed the need to log in with your TV provider credentials for the parade.

The colorful procession will feature a star-studded cast, including 98 Degrees, Andra Day and Common, Sara Evans, Jimmy Fallon and The Roots, Flo Rida, Goo Goo Dolls, Kat Graham, Wyclef Jean, Bravo's Top Chef stars Padma Lakshmi and Tom Colicchio, Patti LaBelle and others.

Broadway performances from the casts of "Anastasia," "Dear Evan Hansen" and other shows will highlight this year's broadcast.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Mother, Daughter Targeted in 'Elaborate' Scam]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 17:57:20 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/226*120/elginscam_29793981.jpg

South Elgin police told a suburban mother and daughter that it is one of the most detailed and elaborate scams they've seen.

On Monday morning, Tina Pelinski was at work when she got a phone call from her daughter's number.

The call was pure terror.

"Two males voices on the other end, explaining to me they had my daughter and that I needed to get ransom money or they were going to rape or kill her," said Pelinski.

Pelinski was given strict orders: stay on the line, don't call police, purchase pre-paid money cards from local businesses. She complied with all three, even as merchants raised questions about what the cards were for.

"In the moment when you think your daughter is going to be killed, you're not going to let them know what you're going through," said Pelinski. "I just said it's for a Christmas party at work...and I'm getting reassurance from the alleged kidnappers (on the phone), saying 'that's a good job. That's a good story you're telling them.'"

Pelinski said she didn't for once think the call was a scam because of the personal stories the scammers detailed: a memory of hearing 2-year-old Hannah play with the Velcro strap on her new shoes; a specific tattoo Hannah has on her right wrist.

How did the scammers know those details? Turns out, daughter Hannah Kosek, 18, was simultaneously swindled by the same scammers.

In her case, she got a call about 7:45 am from someone purporting to be with the Kane County Sheriff's Office that she would face severe consequences for missing jury duty.

"I hadn't been summoned," Kozek said. "I'm freaking out. I'm newly 18. I didn't know. I've never gone to jury duty."

Out of fear, Kozek also obeyed the scammers' commands: purchase pre-paid cards and read the card numbers as "bail money," stay on the phone, pass along an emergency contact number.

"That makes sense if I'm about to go to jail, I supposed they would need (my mom's emergency contact)," Kozek said. "That was when they were asking me very personal things about me and my mom, asking me things that only she would know, so it seemed real to me for some reason."

Hannah said she stayed on the phone for nearly 4.5 hours. No one in her family could reach her during that time.

The plan unraveled when Pelinski's co-worker called police. Pelinski said officers found her still on the phone at a local business, and they had to convince her that it was a scam.

The mother and daughter paid $5500 to scammers. The family has set up a GoFundMe account to recoup their loss. 

"I'm just so angry that they're laughing right now," Pelinski said. "They preyed on our fear. Her fear of going to jail, my fear of losing her."

The South Elgin Police Department issued a community alert Wednesday, warning the public that incidents like this are on the rise in the Chicagoland area.

The release said two phone scams occurred on Nov. 20 in which "the victims were led to believe that there were warrants for their arrest by the Kane County Sheriff's Office and the Internal Revenue Service" and directed to purchase money cards.

Police said government agencies do not accept money cards as forms of payment for fines or bonds.

<![CDATA[Jeffery Opens Up About Decision to Leave Bears]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 16:54:04 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-876455812.jpg

The Chicago Bears will face former wide receiver Alshon Jeffery for the first time on Sunday, and while he left the Windy City over the offseason, he insists there are no hard feelings.

“Business is business,” Jeffery told media members on Wednesday. “I think it was just a better decision for me and my family, honestly.  I spent five years there. I love it there. Me being in Chicago gave me the opportunity to live out my childhood dream of playing a professional sport.”

Jeffery, who was drafted by the Bears in the 2012 NFL Draft, has caught 38 passes for 567 yards and six touchdowns for the Eagles, who are the owners of the best record in the NFL. He has been a key weapon for second-year quarterback Carson Wentz, and he represents the kind of playmaker that the Bears have lacked in his absence.

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The receiver was let go by the team after five seasons, with the team seemingly unwilling to give him a long-term contract extension that he so badly wanted. The Eagles ended up signing him to a one-year deal, but Jeffery insists he’s leaving the past in the past.

“Now I’m here in Philly. Can’t take the past back, so it is what it is,” he said.

The Bears’ top wide receiver this season is Kendall Wright, who has 29 receptions for 330 yards and a touchdown this season. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[66 Chicago-Area Restaurants Open for Thanksgiving Dinner]]> Tue, 07 Nov 2017 15:20:27 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/pies+Lucille+at+Drury+Lane.jpg There's no need to slave over your Turkey Day meal thanks to these 66 Chicago area restaurants. Stay up-to-date on additional restaurants, hours and locations. Dine-in and carry-out options are available.

Photo Credit: Lucille at Drury Lane]]>
<![CDATA[Package Thief Caught on Camera in Bucktown, Residents Say]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 16:44:12 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/BUCKTOWN+PKG+THEFT+-+00001318_29793477.jpg

Consumers can feel helpless this time of year when their online shopping leads to disappointment due to package thefts off front porches.

Chicago police released some preventative tips Wednesday--even as a Bucktown thief struck again.

“Everyone’s busy for the holidays, and deliveries are very rushed, and packages are left outside of the door," says resident Juan Tellez. "It almost facilitated stuff getting ripped off."

A couple who live near Artesian and North sent NBC 5 video of a parcel taken from their stoop. In the stolen package? A new alarm system. Police say these are crimes of opportunity.

Their main piece of advice?

"Install a smart security camera at the front door," said Jeanine McAllister of the Chicago Police Department. "Number two: Get a tracking number, and try to be at home at the time of delivery.”

Roseanne Gary, a Bucktown resident, says you have to be home these days.

"UPS and FedEx no longer require signatures, they throw your stuff over the gate,” she said.

Another tip is asking that the delivery be placed out of sight or having the item delivered to your office. The key is not letting that parcel sit out.

Finally, police say you should take advantage of secure storage option, like Amazon lockers around town or use FedEx or ups pick up sites.

<![CDATA[Calls For Freedom in Another Watts Case]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 20:20:44 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Ronald_Watts_10-9.jpg

Cook County prosecutors say they are at least considering the petition of still another defendant who says he fell victim to disgraced Chicago police Sgt. Ronald Watts and the tactical team he ran on Chicago’s South Side.

Last week, prosecutors vacated the convictions of 15 men who had long contended they were framed by Watts and his crew. “In good conscience,” said assistant State’s Attorney Mark Rotert, “we could not let these convictions stand.”

But there are plenty more defendants waiting in the wings. Among them, a man named Anthony McDaniels, who was arrested on gun charges in November of 2008.

McDaniels has long contended the gun was planted by members of Watts’ team.

“There’s three officers who testified,” defense attorney Joshua Tepfer said Wednesday. “Those three officers have all been tied to many of the 26 convictions overturned, based on allegations that those officers were involved in the day to day corruption of Sgt. Watts.”

Initially, prosecutors balked at McDaniels’ petition. But in court Wednesday, they suggested that position might be changing.

“In light of the events of last week, we are reviewing this case again,” assistant State’s Attorney Carol Rogala told judge Arthur Hill. “We are still looking into this case.”

After court, Tepfer praised prosecutors for their willingness to keep an open mind.

“We’re really pleased with the way everything is progressing,” he said. “We’re certainly disappointed Anthony is not going to be able to celebrate Thanksgiving with his lovely sisters and his mother, but we do hope he’s home by Christmas.”

It is likely Watts and his crew were responsible for many hundreds of arrests during the years they operated in the former Ida B. Wells housing project. Many critics have argued that none of those arrests should be allowed to stand.

Tepfer conceded the McDaniels case involves a gun charge, as opposed to the drug cases tossed out last week. But the facts, he notes, bear one important similarity.

“They key factor is that it revolves around the credibility of these officers,” Tepfer said. “And that credibility is nil.”

<![CDATA[Signs Pop Up as McCarthy Mulls Mayoral Run]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 17:57:51 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/IMG_29881.jpg

The Chicago mayoral race is still over a year away, but momentum keeps building for a potential run by the city’s former police superintendent.

An exploratory committee for former Superintendent Garry McCarthy was formed by a supporter earlier this year, and now there are yard signs popping up on the city’s South Side.

West Beverly homeowner Jerome Hope created the signs, and posted three of them in his front yard.

“(McCarthy) is a straight talker, law and order type and I was just impressed with him as superintendent,” Hope said. “He’d do a good job as mayor.”

Hope cited recent tax increases and an increase in violence as reasons that he would support a McCarthy mayoral run.

 McCarthy has yet to determine whether he’s serious about a run, but he has told NBC 5 that he is “warming up to the idea” of potentially trying to unseat two-term Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the 2019 election.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[Brian Urlacher's Career in Pictures]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 14:50:42 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-82903456.jpg Chicago Bears legend Brian Urlacher was named as a Hall of Fame semifinalist on Tuesday night, and we're looking back at the most impressive feats of his NFL career.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lausch Sworn in as US Attorney in Chicago]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 14:43:51 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lausch.jpg

A former federal prosecutor who tried more than 20 jury cases involving guns, gangs, drugs and other violent crimes was sworn in Wednesday as the new U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, the Department of Justice announced.

John R. Lausch, Jr., was administered the oath of office after President Donald Trump signed his commission by U.S. District Chief Judge Ruben Castillo.

“I am excited to return to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago today,” Lausch, a 47-year-old Joliet native, said. “I am humbled and honored to lead such a tremendous team of attorneys and staff. I look forward to working with our law enforcement partners and continuing the office’s longstanding history of pursuing justice on behalf of the citizens of the Northern District of Illinois.”

Joel R. Levin, who for the past eight months served as Acting United States Attorney, will return to his role as the First Assistant United States Attorney, the DOJ said in a statement.

As an Assistant U.S. Attorney from 1999-2010, Lausch tried dozens of jury cases involving racketeering, fraud, narcotics, extortion, firearms and other offenses, the DOJ said. From 2005-2010, Lausch served as deputy chief in the Narcotics & Gangs Section, overseeing criminal prosecutions of drug trafficking organizations and street gangs. He also served as the office's Violent Crime Coordinator, leading the district’s Anti-Gang and Project Safe Neighborhoods programs. He was twice awarded a Department of Justice Director's Award for Superior Performance, according to the DOJ.

From 2010 until his appointment as U.S. attorney, Lausch worked in private law practice in Chicago.

He earned his law degree in 1996 from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, and earned his bachelor’s degree in General Studies, with a concentration in government, in 1992 from Harvard University.

Lausch's appointment follows the resignation of Zachary Fardon, who stepped down as the district’s U.S. attorney last March after Attorney General Jeff Sessions demanded the resignation all U.S. attorneys appointed by former President Barack Obama.

“It has been the privilege of a lifetime to lead the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago,” Fardon said in a statement at the time. “I want to thank all of the talented men and women of the Office for their hard work and dedicated public service during my term.”

Veteran prosecutor Joel Levin stepped in as acting U.S. attorney after Fardon’s resignation.

Photo Credit: Department of Justice]]>
<![CDATA[Barricade Situation on Chicago's South Side Ends]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 17:15:38 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/CHATHAM+BARRICADE+-+00003006_29793326.jpg

A person has been taken to a local hospital after he barricaded inside a home on Chicago's South Side, according to police. 

The scene, which unfolded near 87th Street and King Drive in Chicago, prompted a massive response by local law enforcement and SWAT teams in the area. 

According to Chicago police, the man involved was taken to an area hospital and the scene has been rendered 

Few details have been released, but police confirmed one person was barricaded inside a residence in the area, saying only that the incident is "domestic related." 

It was not immediately clear if anyone else was inside the home. 

<![CDATA[Teammates Celebrate at Kyle Hendricks' Wedding]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 12:44:04 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-848052966.jpg

Chicago Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks got married over the weekend, and a ton of his teammates were there to share in the special occasion.

Hendricks, who won a World Series with the Cubs in 2016 and is considered one of the team’s best pitchers, married Emma Cain, whom he proposed to over the 2015 offseason.

A bunch of Hendricks’ teammates showed up, including Jake Arrieta, John Lackey, Justin Grimm, and Kyle Schwarber. Former teammates like Miguel Montero and Travis Wood were also at the party, which culminated with Wood dancing shirtless, as he is often prone to do:

Hendricks is just the latest member of the Cubs to get married, joining teammates like Kris Bryant, who was married earlier this year, and Justin Grimm, who was married in February.

Another teammate is also set to walk down the aisle, as first baseman Anthony Rizzo announced his engagement over the summer. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[The Best Black Friday Deals in the Chicago Area]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 23:22:01 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/191*120/GettyImages-625641492.jpg It's that time of year: after a hearty Thanksgiving dinner, shoppers across the country are preparing to score great deals on Black Friday. If you're heading to the stores this weekend, here are some of the best sales that could save you hundreds on holiday gifts.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Gould Discusses Possibility of Return to Bears in Tweets]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 12:08:04 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-500219170.jpg

With all of the kicker drama going on with the Chicago Bears, a lot of fans are pining for the days when Robbie Gould was knocking through field goals at Soldier Field.

Gould, who was let go by the Bears prior to the 2016 season and is currently with the San Francisco 49’ers, took fan questions on his Twitter account, and he teased fans a bit with talk of a Bears reunion:

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That wasn’t the only question Gould received about playing with the Bears again. The team ended up waiving Connor Barth on Monday and signed Cairo Santos as their new kicker, but Gould is still focused on what he’s doing with San Francisco.

“I enjoyed my time as a Bear but I’m pretty excited about what we have going on with the 49’ers,” he tweeted.

Gould did say that he would move back to the Chicago area when his career was over, saying that the city “will be home.”

He also insisted that there are no hard feelings despite his exit from the city, and that he’s still rooting for his former teammates to succeed.

“I have no spite. I had an incredible run in Chicago,” he said. “I want them to do well because my old teammates deserve it.”

Gould has made 19 of 21 field goals with the 49’ers this season, bringing his career field goal percentage back up to 86.2 percent, ranking him among the most accurate kickers in the history of the league. He is the Bears’ all-time leader in a slew of categories, including points scored. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Ways to Prevent Package Thefts This Holiday Season]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 11:24:10 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/BUCKTOWN+STOLEN+PKGS+-+10364714_29788619.jpg

Every holiday season, grinches are reported stealing packages from doorsteps and lobbies across the country. 

With holiday shopping about to ramp up, it's important to know how to protect your items. 

Chicago police say there are ways to help keep your packages safe and they've offered these seven tips:

1. Install a camera. It will deter most thefts, which are crimes of opportunity

2. Ask for a tracking number and try to be at home

3. Better yet, schedule your delivery for when you are home

4. Request a signature for delivery

5. Request your package be placed in a more secluded spot

6. Have items delivered to work or a trusted neighbor

7. Have your order be delivered to the retail store or a locker for pick-up

<![CDATA[Forecast: Bright, but Brisk]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 08:44:06 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000026774439_1200x675_1101665347793.jpg

Andy Avalos has the holiday forecast you'll want to see for the Chicago area. 

<![CDATA[Rundown: Holiday Travel, Teacher Charged, Navy Plane Crash]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 08:42:31 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000026776096_1200x675_1101678659632.jpg

The top headlines you need to know as you start your day on Nov. 22, 2017.

<![CDATA[Travelers Flock to Chicago Airports Ahead of Holiday]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 06:58:52 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/michele+live+pt+1+holiday+travel++aux+39+-+04583922_29784456.jpg

Thanksgiving holiday travel is gearing up. Chicago's airports are especially busy and ready to welcome nearly 2 million passengers. Michelle Relerford reports from O'Hare International Airport. 

<![CDATA[Chicago School Needs Computers For Technology Program]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:24:55 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WomanComputerPic_1200x675_300608067571.jpg A local school is facing a unique challenge. It received a grant for a new technology program - but doesn't have any computers to run it. One local company has stepped up, but the school still needs help. NBC 5's Anayeli Ruiz reports.

Photo Credit: NBC 7]]>
<![CDATA[Honoring Chicagoland's Fallen Heroes]]> Sat, 10 Nov 2012 19:11:50 -0600 https://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[Another Man Exonerated in Wave of Cook County Cases Reexamined]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:18:30 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/FULTON+RELEASED+-+00004024_29778131.jpg Justice Tuesday for a Chicago man who served two decades behind bars. He is part of a recent wave of exonerations coming from the Cook County State's Attorney's office. NBC 5's Charlie Wojciechowski reports.]]> <![CDATA[2 Chicago Firefighters Overcome Blood Cancer]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:13:34 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/cosmetic-fire-AP-1120.jpg Two Chicago firefighters both diagnosed with a form of blood cancer. Now they say they have beaten their disease -- and have their doctor to thank. NBC 5's Regina Waldroup reports.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Meals From the Heart: Volunteers Give Back on Thanksgiving]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:08:30 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WEB_430P_MAD_THANKSGIVING_MEAL.jpg

Volunteers shining a light on hunger in the community are making a difference for families in need. Sabrina Santucci reports.

<![CDATA[Teens Honored For Saving Child Who Fell From Overcrowded Car]]> Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:04:35 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/teenssavebaby_29778073.jpg

Dramatic video released by police shows the moment a one and a half year old child falls from a moving car in West Dundee.

A car following behind the vehicle quickly stops and the teens inside spring into action.

One gets out to help the child while another calls 911.

"A child like, my estimate is two to three years old, literally just launched out the drivers side door," the caller tells the dispatcher.

"While the car was going?" the dispatcher asks.

"Yes, turning a corner," the caller responds. "We were sitting on the other side of the intersection and we saw it."

It happened at a busy intersection on the evening of Oct. 30.

Police say the child was unsecured in an overcrowded vehicle driven by his mother.

"The child somehow hit door latch and door opened on corner and child fell out," Police Sgt. Daniel Haines said.

Video shows multiple people returning to the scene to grab the injured child.

The teens followed the car to a nearby grocery store--where police responded.

On Monday, Jonathan Padilla, Matthew Gillespie and Anthony Arroyo were honored with West Dundee's Lamplighter Award.

Police say they likely saved the child's life.

"The thing that stood out to me was it's almost like they received training in how to deal with situation," Haines said. "They really saved what could be unthinkable tragedy from happening."

The child's mother is facing numerous charges including underage drinking and driving and endangering the welfare of a child.

<![CDATA[Water Bill Almost Sinks Kankakee Gymnastics Business]]> Tue, 21 Nov 2017 23:08:26 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/4P+PKG+GYMNASTICS+WATER+BILL+RESPONDS+-+00003617_29777197.jpg

Amid all of the backflips, balance beam routines and tumbling at Golden’s Gymnastics in Kankakee, aspiring gymnasts also flush toilets, wash their hands and drink from a fountain. The water usage here is pretty routine, according to coach Shelly Rodgers, which is why she and the gym owners were shocked when they received a huge water bill last September that was almost 100 times the usual monthly amount. It was the type of bill that could have broken the family business.

Aqua America of Illinois charged Golden’s for more than 600,000 gallons of water that month, exponentially more than the 7,000 gallons the gym averaged each month over the past year. To put that in perspective, 600,000 gallons of water is roughly equivalent to the amount in an Olympic-sized pool.

Rodgers says Aqua blamed the high bill on “an invisible leak” somewhere in the facility, which made no sense to the business owners.

“The building couldn’t stand if there’s 680,000 gallons of water underneath us,” Rodgers said. “Clearly there’s something wrong.”

Rodgers said she asked Aqua of Illinois to help her understand how a bill could suddenly be so out of whack, but got nowhere with the water utility. It serves 225,000 customers in the Kankakee area. Its parent company, Aqua America, serves approximately 3 million customers in eight states.

When NBC 5 Responds looked into Rodgers’ case, we found similar complaints of mishandled bills, billing practices and other customer service complaints lodged against Aqua on the Better Business Bureau’s website, where Aqua of Illinois has a B- rating.

After we submitted questions about the gym’s complaint, Aqua swapped out the facility’s old water meter for a new smart meter and wiped out the majority of the inflated September bill, reducing it from $8,235 to $332. An Aqua spokesperson offered this statement:

“Aqua cannot say that the facility’s previously registered usage was an error. In fact, Aqua had the former meter tested by an independent, certified third party testing laboratory and the results show that it was registering accurately. Between the time the new meter was installed on Sept. 29 and October 16 when Aqua checked it again, it showed 3,400 gallons of water used. That is on par with Golden's Gymnastics’ average monthly usage over the past year, not including the increases seen in May or September.”

“Based on our previous discussions with the property owner, we are confident that the usage increase earlier this year was the result of a leaking toilet valve that was subsequently fixed. This recent spike was more significant and could indicate another leak within the property, which we explained to the customer. However, based on the new meter registering in line with Golden’s average monthly usage, and because they have consistently been customers in good standing, we made the decision to cancel the September bill and reissue one based on the facility's average monthly use over the past year, excluding May and September. At the same time, we have asked the property owner to closely inspect their plumbing equipment for leaks and monitor their water use by checking the meter daily to identify any spikes. If they see any significant increases, we've asked them to contact us right away.”

Rodgers says she feels grateful that Aqua wiped out the inflated bill and installed the new smart meter, but she remains skeptical. In addition to her already-busy routine as a gymnastics coach, landlord, and mom, Rodgers says she is adding a new weekly task. “Now I’ll be reading the meter weekly,” she says,” to make sure the results are where they need to be.

<![CDATA[Spelling Error Has Major Implications When Shopping Online]]> Tue, 21 Nov 2017 22:51:21 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/TYPO+PRIVACY+-+00000511_29777134.jpg

An online shopper thought he was doing business with a national store. He later learned that – because of a typo – he had given his credit card information to a stranger. Marion Brooks reports.

<![CDATA[Violent Michigan Avenue Robberies Worry Some Residents]]> Tue, 21 Nov 2017 22:42:00 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/4PM+PKG+MICHIGAN+AVE+CRIMES+-+00000606_29777102.jpg

At least four violent robberies on Michigan Avenue in the past two weeks have happened in the South Loop near Grant Park, police say.

The latest incident happened monday evening around 10:30 p.m.

Police say a 22-year-old man was walking south in the 600 block of Michigan Avenue when four men approached him, robbed him and beat him.

“There’s not much you can do," Petros Diakatos, who lives near by, said. "You can’t have cops everywhere to watch your back - maybe do a buddy system. I think those are just random acts especially around the holidays - people need money.”

According to police - the assailants grabbed the victims wallet before punching and kicking him.

“There’s been some muggings - some people getting robbed and this is very concerning because I commute,” said Columbia student Max Blual.

Roosevelt University has alerted students and staff about the latest incidents. Some on campus say the recent attacks are extremely alarming.

“I know this is an urban environment but there are kids down here - students from out of the city and it’s super concerning,” said Brandon Frien, who teaches at Columbia.

Kelsey Burrus lives just down the street from grant park says with the sun setting much earlier - she worries about walking home after dark and will be taking extra precautions.

“I would say not wearing headphones or even just having someone on the phone while I’m walking, so that someone knows where I’m at and making sure that I make it safely," she said.

<![CDATA[3 Juveniles Charged in Connection to 16 Carjackings: Cops]]> Tue, 21 Nov 2017 22:38:17 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/CARJACKING+-+00003325_29776961.jpg

Three juveniles were arrested Tuesday in connection to at least “16 potential carjackings” on Chicago’s south and west sides, police said.

Chicago Police Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said he couldn’t release many specifics because there are “two additional offenders that we are seeking to apprehend.”

In a tweet, Guglielmi said the teens were involved in a “carjacking pattern” that occurred from Halloween to Nov. 19.

He said the juveniles will face vehicle and identity theft charges in the juvenile court system.

It was not immediately clear if the charges had been approved yet.

There have been about 700 carjackings reported this year.

<![CDATA[Women Chase Down Alleged Store Thief in Evanston]]> Tue, 21 Nov 2017 21:00:38 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/EVANSTON+ROBBERY+-+00013715_29776823.jpg

For a little more than 20 years Ayla Pizzo has enjoyed running her bead shop in downtown Evanston.

“It’s a wonderful neighborhood and it’s filled with community and people who are there for you,” she told NBC 5.

And that community stepped up on Nov. 11 when Pizzo says a suspicious young man walked into her store.

"This person was just looking around and had a hood on, which no one really thinks about in Chicago in November, because it’s cold,” she said.

While Pizzo and a fellow employee helped customers in the back, they suddenly heard a familiar sound from their 100-year-old cash register.

"He made himself busy, took the money out of our cash register, and ran out the door,” Pizzo said.

Customer Kristin Andrews shot cell phone video of Pizzo's employee chasing the man, but she quickly turned the camera off and jumped in to help.

“I see this kid run out of the door like a horse out of a gate,” Andrews recalled. “I called 911 the kid was running really quickly.”

Instead of chasing the young man, Andrews cut down an alley to cut him off to cut him off and that’s when she encountered some much needed help.

“A random woman saw me, saying 'are you looking for that guy that’s running in the black jacket' and I said 'yeah, yeah, he just went into that shop.'”

Both women trapped the man inside a coffee shop until police arrived.

Officers arrested Brian Gaines who was charged with misdemeanor theft for allegedly stealing $80.

Andrews and and Pizzo praise all the women, who barely knew each other, for coming together.

“It was a very dangerous thing that every single one of them did, it warmed my heart,” Pizzo said.

Andrews echoed that sentiment.

“The serendipity of it just makes me love women and Evans even more.”