Second victim in fatal Springfield IL shooting remains in stable condition; Car used by suspects located

Springfield, Illinois – Yesterday, At 7:18 p.m., The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office received a call of shots fired at a vehicle in the parking lot at the Crossing Too Liquor Store, located at 2828 Clearlake Ave.

The vehicle, which was shot at several times, left eastbound and into Bergen park where it stopped after striking a tree. Officers discovered two male victims. James Simpson, age 21, was found at the scene deceased and the other victim, who has now been identified as 20 year old Courtlan A. Williams, of Springfield, Il., was transported to St. John’s Hospital with a gunshot wound. According to an update from Sangamon County Sheriff Jack Campbell, Williams remains in stable condition.

Sheriff Campbell also reported that Surveillance video shows the suspect being dropped off in the area of the liquor store. That car has been located and is being held by detectives for processing.

Persons of interest have been developed and detectives continue to follow leads and interview witnesses.

Anyone with further information can call the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office Investigations Division at 217/753-6840

Victim in yesterday’s fatal shooting in Springfield IL has been identified; GoFundMe Page seeking donations for funeral

James Simpson Jr. – Age 21

Springfield, Illinois – At 7:18 p.m., The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office received a call of shots fired at a vehicle in the parking lot at the Crossing Too Liquor Store, located at 2828 Clearlake Ave. 

The vehicle, which was shot at several times, left eastbound and into Bergen park where it stopped after striking a tree.  Officers discovered two male victims.  James Simpson, age 21, was found at the scene deceased and the other victim, a 20 year-old male, was transported to St. John’s Hospital with a gunshot a wound and was listed in stable condition.

According to Sangamon County Coroner, Jim Allmon, an autopsy was done this morning and the preliminary cause of death suggests Mr. Simpson died from multiple gunshot wounds. 

Sangamon County Sheriff, Jack Campbell, told us that a perimeter was set up and K-9 dog was called to track down the suspect who fled on foot, but officers were unable to find the suspect. 

Illinois State Police, Springfield Police Department, the Springfield Park District and Grandview Police Department assisted the Sheriff’s Office.

At this time, there was no reports of an immediate arrest.

There has been a GOFUNDME Page set up for Simpson. If you would like to donate or view gofundme page, click here.

SPD was chasing suspect before fatal car crash on South Grand Ave; Suspect is in custody and charged with Reckless Homicide

(Left) Devin Hogan – Age 26
(Right) Scene of the vehicle crash

Springfield, Illinois – On March 13, 2021, Springfield Police were in pursuit of a suspect, who had two out of county warrants. That suspect was actively fleeing from Springfield Police at the time of the fatal car crash, according to witnesses at the scene who spoke to us.

The suspect, Devin Hogan, age 26, was driving a 2018 Dodge Charger which had “HOGAN 3” displayed on his license plate.

According to Sangamon County Prosecutors, Hogan ran a traffic light and crossed the train tracks near S. 3rd St and South Grand. When Hogan’s vehicle went over the train tracks it became airborne and struck another vehicle.

Inside the other vehicle was David Sirtout, age 37 and Stephanie Smith. According to the Sangamon County Coroner both occupants of the vehicle were transported to the hospital, but Sirtout was pronounced deceased at Memorial Medical Center in the ER Room at 9:59 p.m.

Springfield Police report that after the crash, they witnessed Hogan placing an item into a trash can located in the parking lot of the McDonalds located at 501 South Grand Ave E. When the item was retrieved by police, it was a black and red Nike shoe box containing suspected cannabis. The suspected cannabis weighed approximately 505 grams with package. Inside Hogan’s vehicle was also 4 individual bags of cannabis that weighed approximately 22 grams with package. Police also recovered $4,480, which was bundled in rubber bands, on Hogan.

Hogan also had two out of county warrants in Macon County and Cass County. According to Macon County records, Hogan was wanted in Macon County for Fleeing and eluding police, possession of cannabis and manufacturing and or delivery of cannabis of at least 500 grams. His bond amount for this warrant was $75,000 with 10 percent to apply ($7,500).

Hogan’s warrant in Cass County was for failing to pay a fine after he received court supervision for two traffic tickets. According to Cass County, Hogan received a traffic ticket for Driving on Suspended Drivers License and Expired Vehicle Registration. His Suspended Drivers License ticket was dismissed and he received court supervision for his expired vehicle registration. His bond amount in this case was $2,000 with 10 percent to apply ($200).

Hogan is current in the Sangamon County Jail and has been officially charged by the Sangamon County State’s Attorney’s office with Manufacturing and or Delivery of cannabis, a class 2 felony, Reckless Homicide, a class 3 felony, 2 counts of Aggravated fleeing or attempting to elude police, a class 4 felony, 2 counts of Aggravated reckless driving, a class 4 felony, and obstruction of justice, a class 4 felony.

Hogan’s bond has been set at $325,000 and he will need to pay 10 percent ($32,500) to be released from the Sangamon County Jail.

Sirtout’s family has set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for his funeral. You can click here to view and or donate to his GoFundMe page.

This crash is also being investigated by the Illinois State Police.

Grandview Village President and Clerk resigns; No reason given

Grandview Village, Illinois – Springfield Leaks has learned that Grandview Village President, Rick Larson and Grandview Village Clerk, Sabrina Nudo have resigned from their positions with the Grandview Village.

Both of their resignations were submitted on March 3. According to both resignation letters we’ve received, they did not give a reason for submitting their resignations.

Larson’s resignation letter (VIEW HERE), which was submitted to Grandview Village Attorney Don Craven, simply said, “Mr. Craven: Please accept this letter as notice of resignation from the Village President position for the Village of Grandview. This is effective immediately. All village property will be turned in to the Village office this evening. All keys will be in an envelope marked Personal & Confidential to your attention.”

Nudo’s resignation letter (VIEW HERE), which was also submitted to Craven, said, “ To whom it may concern: I Sabrina Nudo am resigning from the position at Grandview as village clerk. Thank you for your time.”

Their resignation comes after Grandview’s former police chief Tom Hiatt was fired and a week later Grandview Police Officer Brent Sutton had resigned.

We’ve reached out to Larson by phone and text, but he didn’t answer.

Man in fatal car crash on S. 5th and E. South Grand Ave in Springfield, Illinois identified

Springfield, Illinois – The Sangamon County Coroner has identified the individual involved in the motor vehicle crash at South 5th Street and East South Grand Avenue in Springfield yesterday evening around 9:30 p.m.

David Sirtout, age 37 of Springfield was transported by EMS from the accident scene to the emergency room at Memorial Medical Center.

Mr. Sirtout was pronounced deceased at 9:59pm by emergency room staff.

An autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow morning. The crash is under investigation by the Sangamon County Coroner and the Illinois State Police.

Four people were involved in the collision and at this time their condition is unknown.

61 y/o man sentenced to 28 years after being found guilty of sexual abuse with a child under the age of 13

Sangamon County Jail

Springfield, Illinois – Today, Associate Circuit Judge Rudolph Braud sentenced James L. Berry, age 61, to 28 years in The Illinois Department of Corrections. Berry was found guilty on November 12, 2020 of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse, a class 2 felony, Sexual Exploitation of a Child under 13, a class 4 felony and Possession of a Controlled Substance (less than 15 grams of a substance containing cocaine), a class 4 felony.

A Sangamon County Jury found that Berry committed and act of sexual conduct with a child under the age of 13 in that he knowingly touched her breasts and exposed his sex organs to the victim for the purpose of sexual arousal and gratification.

Berry faced a maximum potential sentence of 30 years (served at 50% by statute). When berry is released from prison, he will serve a 3-year period of Mandatory Supervised Released. He will also be required to register as a sexual predator for the rest of his life.

After sentencing, Sangamon County State’s Attorney Dan Wright stated, “Every child deserves a safe and secure environment free from abuse of any kind. The defendant took advantage of a child for his own sexual arousal. Such depraved conduct will not be tolerated in Sangamon County and our community is safer with him behind bars.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant State’s Attorneys Brian Shaw and Kendra Hansel.

The defendant was represented by William Vig.

*A picture of the defendant wasn’t immediately available.

28 year old woman arrested for Aggravated Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol after a pedestrian was fatally struck in hit and run

      Miranda J. Davidson – Age 28

Montgomery County, Illinois – On March 10, 2021, at approximately 9:10 p.m., a 28 year old woman was involved in a hit and run which claimed the life of a 24 year old Montgomery County woman.

Investigators report that Miranda J. Davidson, age 28, was traveling westbound on Illinois Route 16 approximately .10 mile west of Grandpoint Avenue in Montgomery County. In the same location, Bethany A. Dixon, age 24, was also walking. Davidson struck Dixon without stopping and left the scene of the crash.

Later, Davidson returned to the scene and reported the crash. Dixon was transported to a local area hospital where she was later pronounced deceased.

The roadway was closed for approximately 4 hours for the investigation. The Illinois State Police (ISP) Traffic Crash Reconstruction Unit and ISP Zone 6 responded to conduct the traffic crash investigation.

On March 12, 2021, the office of Montgomery County State’s Attorney Andrew Affrunti charged Davidson with Aggravated Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol Resulting in Death (Class 2 Felony).

She was booked into the Montgomery County Jail and her bond was set by the court at $100,000, 10% to apply. She must post ($10,000) to be released.

Man arrested in Springfield, Illinois for a Drug Induced Homicide in Hillsboro, IL

James McBrain

Montgomery County, Illinois – On December 4, 2020 at 4:10am the Hillsboro Police Department and Hillsboro Area Ambulance was dispatched to possible overdose at a residence on Hickory St. in Hillsboro. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office responded as well assisting at the scene. Responding units arrived and requested the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office respond.

Justin Calcott 30 of Hillsboro was pronounce deceased at the scene. An investigation began into the case.

Hillsboro Police Department Investigators presented the case to Montgomery County State’s Attorney Andrew Affrunti after a multijurisdictional investigation and data collecting by the Hillsboro Police Department, Litchfield Police Department, Illinois State Police / South Central Illinois Drug Task Force and with the assistance of the Carlinville Police Department.

State’s Attorney Affrunti filed a one count Information against James McBrain for the offense of Drug Induced Homicide and a warrant was issued for McBrain’s arrest.

McBrain was taken into custody March 4, 2021 by the United States Marshall Service at a location in Springfield, IL. McBrain is being held in the Montgomery County Jail with a bond of $750,000.

SPD Union: Alderman Gregory committed a felony; If a police officer did this they would be held accountable

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Police Benevolent and Protective Association Unit #5, the union which represents Springfield Police Officers, sent a letter today to Mayor Jim Langfelder regarding the fight that occurred between Ward 2 Alderman, Shawn Gregory and an unidentified man.

After the video of the fight (CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE VIDEO) was released Thursday night via social media, Mayor Langfelder addressed the video at a press conference held yesterday. Langfelder said, “Bottom line is, they settled it like I used to settle it when I was younger…physically. You didn’t resort to gun violence, you didn’t resort to knives.”

In a two page strongly worded letter, the police union fired back at Mayor Langfelder and said the following: ” Mayor Langfelder, I write this letter today with deep concern. The rank-and-file Membership of the Springfield Police Department who are all members f the Police Benevolent and Protective Association Unit #5, are bewildered and frankly, upset about the shocking behavior of Alderman Shawn Gregory. As you are aware, Alderman Gregory instigated a fight with another male which was caught on video and published by news outlets and social media.

Our Members are dumbfounded that no adverse actions have taken place against Alderman Gregory by the City, the Aldermen, or by you personally. Rather, you and Alderman Gregory defended his actions by attempting to turn his egregious lapse in judgement into a positive by saying he was teaching the people in his community that they should fight with fists rather than using guns. While this is obviously a good try to diminish the responsibility Alderman Gregory should be taking for his actions, it honestly insults every one of our Members who know for an absolute fact that the citizens expect much better from its elected officials as well as all of the City’s employees.

Within the last year alone, PBPA 5 has had Members scrutinized and held highly accountable for similar or lesser offenses. While this is something that should be done, there cannot be a double standard with elected officials and other City employees. The double standard in Alderman Gregory’s case is very apparent. Since this happened, my Members have questioned why he is not being held accountable by you and the City Council at large.

With new legislation being passed regarding “police reform” already creating another high level of stress among our Members and police across the State, the message sent by you during the press conference only served to further reduce the faith of our Members have that you support them. They feel as though the City doesn’t care about its police officers and the difficult job they do every day. Rather, they feel vilified when they make mistakes, and when an elected official exercises poor judgement, nothing at all happens. Accountability is mandatory at all levels of government. Elected officials should be held as accountable as any other person would be in similar circumstances.

We are asking that you hold Alderman Gregory accountable, and that you explain your press conference remarks more completely. Our officers are regularly called to fights in progress exactly like this one, and at times make arrests for such behavior. Encouraging this behavior rather than denouncing it to the public through the media sends a message to our Members and the public at large that it is acceptable behavior in the City of Springfield. What took place was Aggravated Battery because it occurred on a public way. This is a felony in Illinois, and there is no way one of our officers would not be held accountable if this had in fact happened to them. Respectfully, Don Edwards PBPA 5 President.”

Our Opinion: When did the City Council start caring about Ward 3?

Roy Williams Jr.

Springfield, Illinois – When Roy Williams Jr., was appointed by Mayor Jim Langfelder to become the next Alderman of Ward 3, it was automatically considered as a done deal. Several Facebook comments congratulating Williams were written on his personal Facebook page and several voters were excited to see what positive changes he was going to bring to Ward 3.

It came as a shock to us, as well as a number of others, that the Springfield City Council would strike down his appointment. Perhaps, they don’t know Williams or perhaps the council wanted to go against Mayor Langfelder and Williams was collateral damage. Either way, this isn’t the time nor the vote to go against.

The City of Springfield, particularly, the East Side of Springfield have seen a rise in gun violence, run down properties and with the spread of COVID-19, an increase of income inequality. Ward 3 needs a voice now… not later, but NOW!

I don’t think the Council knows this or even cares… but Williams is considered as an elder in the community. And not an elder as far as age, but he’s considered as an elder because he has knowledge and wisdom. He hasn’t officially served in a position for the City, but you best believe he’s always served THIS CITY and THIS COUNTRY!

Look at his resume… look at his references. He’s backed by people who are actually in the community, who are actual leaders in the community and the people who are doing work in the community. T. Ray McJunkins, Senior Pastor at Union Baptist Church, who’s congregation is made up of Ward 2 and Ward 3 voters. Pastor McJunkins is publicly supporting Williams. Although, Pastor McJunkins name was on the list of references for Williams, it must have been skipped by the Council. I say this because do you think a pastor who preaches the word of God everyday to Ward 2 and Ward 3 voters is going to support a nominee who isn’t looking out for his congregation?

Or how about this reference… Silas Johnson, Senior Pastor at Calvary Baptist Church. Another pastor, who’s congregation is made up of Ward 2 and Ward 3 voters. The Council must think Pastor Johnson doesn’t know what kind of problems and issues his congregation is facing in the community or perhaps this community leader’s name must have been skipped too.

In addition to McJunkins and Johnson’s endorsement, Williams also received support from Frank McNeil, Former Ward 2 Alderman, Shelly Heideman, Executive Director of the Faith Coalition for the Common Good and Sr. Marilyn Jean Runkle, from the Springfield Dominican Sisters.

What’s mind boggling with this issue is – so what if Williams decides to run for a full-term? Do you think Ward 3 is so stupid to not be able to judge for themselves if he’s done a good job or not? And when did you care so much for Ward 3? Shootings are on the rise, crime is on the rise, poverty is on the rise, but it’s never discussed by the other Aldermen’s until it hits their backyards.

Williams is an experienced community leader and has demonstrated this over the last 20 years that he has lived in Ward 3. For the past 4 years, he has served as President of the Ernie Bankhead Neighborhood, which is in Ward 3. He’s a graduate of Southeast High school and the University of Illinois Springfield. He has also served his country as a United States Army Platoon Sergeant.

This man is a great man… he is the man to get the job done. Stop playing games and politics and once again putting the east side as last and get him passed. The East Side of Springfield is tired of being last, passed over and a victim of a minority vote!