Thursday, January 14, 1999

Alton Telegraph

Location: Alton, Illinois

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Alton Telegraph (Newspaper) - January 14, 1999, Alton, Illinois HMM area causes Vol. 163 No. 364 50 cents No more Bull Michael Jordan announces retirement from basketball Page B-l ice SERVING THE RIVER BEND SINCE 1836 In the |« homo Parents choose to take control of their children’s education Page EMJ The outlook Skies will becomepartly * cloudy; nigh near 24, low near 15 Page I)-8 havoc across When I Grow Up’ Local woman ;ets ‘into’ Street role Page C-l Thursday January 14, 1999 flpim M BARNES -..... The Telegraph/JOHN BADMAN Robert Orban, a tow truck operator with Hodge Service in Alton, looks for the best way to hook up to a car that slid onto a snow bank Wednesday afternoon at Homer Adams Parkway and Alby Street. The driver, who was not injured, stopped short of hitting a traffic signal and was not ticketed by police. At right, Alton Fire Department paramedics and ambulance technicians carefully work their way to an ambulance with Mike McCormick, owner of Imo's Pizza in Piasa Corners in North Alton, after McCormick fell on the ice, breaking his right femur. Clark trying to buy Wood River Refining Co., magazine says By DARRYL HOWLETT Telegraph staff writer ROXANA — A trade publication is standing by its report that Clark Refining & Marketing Inc. is trying to buy its next-door neighbor, Wood River Refining Co. OPIS Energy Group, an oil trade publication from New Jersey, has reported on its Internet site and a newsletter Good Si? Morning Area/Illinois . .A-3,8 Bulletin Board .A-6 Classifieds ... C-5 Comics.......D-5 Editorial ......A-4 Nation/world .B-7,8 Obituaries A-5 Beers, Gauf, Ham, Kramer, Moore, Pohlman, Robinson, Spickerman, Stanford, Steward, Stokes Television C-4 f|2 that Clark has presented at least two deals to Wood River Refining. Clark refinery manager Forrest Laurer said the article’s claims are simply rumors. “There have been, over the years, discussions concerning mutual beneficial opportunities between the two companies to create synergies." Laurer said he thinks both companies can survive and operate separately in the 21st century but that “there’s synergies that can be taken advantage of. There’s no real deal done. Other than that, I can’t comment any further." The writer of the OPIS article, Ben Brockwell, said Wednesday his story is accurate. ■ See CLARK, Page A-7 Confession to be admitted in trial in fatal beating By DENNIS GRUBAUGH Telegraph staff writer EDWARDSVILLE - A 17-year-old’s confession will be allowed during his trial in the mob beating death of Richard L. Skelton of Wood River. Taiwan M. Davis of Alton will be the first adult tried for murder in Skelton’s death. His trial is tentatively set for Tuesday in Madison County Circuit Court. Davis has admitted hitting Skelton four times with a broomstick, twice in the head and twice in the midsection, police said. Skelton was beaten by a mob after racial slurs were exchanged early Aug ll. He and his brother, Fred Skelton, and two females had gone to a reputed crack house in the HOO block of East Seventh Street looking for Richard Skelton’s television set, which Skelton believed had been stolen and traded for drugs. The Skeltons, who are white, exchanged racially charged words with people on the street, and the beating ensued, authorities said All of the suspects are black. (j ■ See TRIAL, Page A-7 Edwardsville firefighters carry out Judith Freeman on a stretcher Wednesday after neighbors and a mailman pulled her from her burning house at 529 Dewey Ave., in Edwardsville. Neighbors rescue fire victim By STEVE WHITWORTH Telegraph staff writer EDWARDSVILLE - Judith Freeman owes her life to her mailman and neighbors who pulled her from her burning house Wednesday morning Freeman, 60, was hospitalized in serious condition after the fire in her house at 529 Dewey Ave. Edwardsville Fire Chief Michael Karlechik said Freeman's rescuers “very probably” saved her life. “If we hadn’t have pulled her out when we did, I don’t think she would have made it,” said postal carrier Steve Wolters, 41, of Alton, who delivers Freeman’s mail. One of Freeman’s neighbors, Donnie James, of 521 Dewey, had gone outside to start his car when he saw flames coming from a window on the west side of her house. “I ran back inside the house and hollered at (his wife) to call 911," James said. His wife, Betty James, made the call at 11:27 a m. Donnie James said his two stepsons, Steven and Michael Russell, rushed over to Freeman’s house with him Both are sons of Betty James “We were screaming and banging on the windows," Steven Russell, 27, said. “I knew (Freeman) didn’t get out much, so the odds were that she was at home." Steven said "there wert* no obvious flames” at the rear of the house, so he kicked in the ■ See FIRE, Page A-7 Call Your Local Credit Union Like “huge mound* of snow* 9 that won *t melt away - rd hills** are bere to stay. will he late - People Iping Peopi Flurry of accidents By ANDE YAKSTIS Telegraph staff writer A freezing rain storm spread a glaze of ice across highways during the morning traffic rush Wednesday, causing a flurry of accidents. A mass of arctic air collided with a warm flow of moisture from the gulf, turning streets, driveways and yards into a sheet of ice. “A blast of cold air ran into the rain from the gulf and started falling as freezing rain," said Ron Przybylinski of the St. Louis National Weather Service. People woke up Wednesday morning to a layer of ice covering their cars, yards and driveways, Przybylinski said. Drivers scraped their windshields and slid on icy roads on their way to work. ■ See ICE, Page A-7 Schools quickly running out of snow days By SANFORD J. SCHMIDT Telegraph staff writer Schools are running out of snow days, and residents are running out of patience after another sheet of ice covered the area Wednesday. “It didn’t take but a few minutes to make the deci sion,” Bethalto School Superintendent Dennis Rucker said after calling off school. He got a call from district transportation employees at ■ See SCHOOLS, Page A-7