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Telegraph, The (Newspaper) - April 3, 1999, Alton, Illinois SERVING THE RIVER BEND SINCE 1836 sBHRHBBr Spring forward Daylight Time is here Turn docks ahead one hour tonight Vol 164 No 78 cents On the mark Alton takes to the track today Page Ol The outlook j From the hilltop fetd jZykanfamily taderetoims i enjoyslifein highnear4 j theirCrystal low near 56 i i rdldtt i PageB1 Saturday April Mercantile robbed Woman brandishes pistol makes off with cash By DARRYL HOWLETT Telegraph staff writer ALTON Detectives with the Alton Police Department are investigating an armed robbery that occurred Thursday at the Mercantile Bank 620 Landmarks A police news release said a white female walked into the lobby of the bank about Thursday displayed a pistol to the tellers and demanded money from two tellers She placed an undetermined amount of money in a large bag which she carried into the bank and fled through thelfront lobby doors Detectives welre whether the suspect fled on foot or drove away in a The SMITH The Landmarks Boulevard branch of the Mercantile Bank was robbed at gunpoint Thursday afternoon car Alton chief of detectives said Friday We thought we had the suspect already in custody but this other persons alibi checked We thought we had a good lead on the but at this time were still following up some Lt James Hessel out Were not sure but we havent ruled out if the suspect is a local The suspect is described as being a white female 20 to 30 years old approximately 5feet 2inches to 5feet6inches tall and weighing 130 pounds The suspect had strawberry blonde hair which she wore in a pony tail and freckles on her face When last seen she was wearing a pair of black sunglasses on top of her head a dark blue Tshirt and white tennis shoes Hessel said the suspect took an undisclosed amount of cash Police reviewed the banks sur veillance videotapes trying to gain a better description of the BANK Page A7 In a pair of bank surveillance pictures a bank robbery suspect appears in full and front views during a Thursday heist at the Mercantile Bank lobby at 620 Landmarks Blvd in Alton American hero pays a visit to River Bend Rep John Lewis gives speechat Pnncipia By DARRYL HOWLETT Telegraph staff writer Beaten by state troopers on March 7 1965 a day that became known as Bloody I remember the clunk of the troopers heavy boots the whoops of rebel yells from the white onlookers the clip clop of horses hooves hitting the hard asphalt of the highway the voice of a woman shouting Get em Get the ns Prom Walking With The Wind A Memoir of the Movement by John Lewis A true American hero paid a visit Friday to the River Bend including a speaking engagement at Principia College inElsah Rep John Lewis spoke at the Cox Auditorium as The Ernie and Lucha Yogel Lecturer on Moral Courage 1 Lewis discussed his book Walking With the Wind A Memoir of the which was published last year along with the presentday struggles in the civil rights movement and his work inCongress I will do a sort of a review of the his tory on the struggle for civil rights I will talk about the distance weve come and the distance we have to go I will talk about the philosophy of nonviolence This will be a walk through the pages of histo ry through the Lewis said in ah exclusive interview with The Telegraph The BADMAN Rep John Lewis who was a key figure in the civil rights movement in the early 1960s stands in front of Altons Lovejoy Monument Friday During the heyday of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s Lewis 59 organized sitin demonstrations at seg regated lunch counters in the South He was instrumental in forming the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee He also participated in the Freedom Rides which were organized to challenge See LEWIS Page A7 Onevehicle wreck kills Hardin man By THOMAS WRAUSMANN Telegraph staff writer HARDIN A 21yearold Hardin man was killed late Thursday when his pickup truck struck a utility pole about a halfmile south of town Benjamin H Loft a carpen ter and construction employee with Wilson Co in Granite City was pronounced dead at in the one vehicle accident said Calhoun County Sheriff Richard Meyer also the county coroner Officials from Illinois State Police District 18 said Ldft was traveling north on County Highway 1 at Lincoln Valley Roadwhen he went around a bend Authorities said he lost control of his red 1997 Ford pickup and went off the road way breaking the pole at high speed Responding along with the State Police were the Calhoun County Sheriffs Department the Calhoun County Ambulance Service and the Hardin Police Department Meyer said Loft was alone in his vehi he said The wreck is still being investigated by the State Police and a coroners inquest is pending he said Fatal accident Loft was a 1996 graduate of Calhoun High School and was a carpenter apprentice for the St Louis District Council Many Calhoun County resi dents are mourning the death of the son of Bernie and Penny Loft of Hardin Bernie Loft is a former industrial arts teacher at the highschool and Penny Loft is still a teacher in the Calhoun School District Bernie Loft also works at Wilson See RATALS Page A7 Good Morning Brnnnan Dlvefay Classifieds Comics M rtpma B3 Graham Heeren Loft Lukeman May Taylor Todd Weddersten Religion Scoreboard C2 Alton groups take on gangrelated graffiti By ANGELA MUELLER Telegraph staff writer ALT9N A coalition of local civic organizations and city departments is continuing a longstanding battle against gangrelated graffiti in Altoni The Alton Parks Department Alton Police Department the East End Improvement Association and The 100 Black Men of Alton joined forces to fight graffiti more than five years ago Individuals from these organi zations volunteer their time to clean up areas where the van dals strike Alton Township Supervisor Don Huber and Greg Pyatt a member of the Parks and Recreation Department worked Thursday to remove graffiti on the restroom pavil ion at the Russell Commons Park located off the Berm Highway near the Clark Bridge The men hydrosand blasted the front and one side wall of the building as well as an area of sidewalk The graffiti had been on the building and sidewalk for about a month Huber said the combined groups normally try to remove the graffiti as soon as possible but wet weather had prevented the immediate cleanup of the park building We try to get it down in a day or two to discourage peo ple from doing it Huber said The group focuses on remov ing gangrelated graffiti We saw an increasing amount of gang symbols appearing in the Huber said Thats what were attacking They were starting to stake out their ter ritory so we decided the best way to deal with the problem was to eliminate Members of the group either use the hydrosandblaster which was purchased by the See GRAFFITI Page A7 CONSTRUCTION IfCROW tlRVICIf INC 112 W Homer Adams Pkwy Alton 6184676370 GUARANTEED SERVICES TO the property owner the contractor the lender the title agent Dispersing service for residential commercial construction and apartment development projects and remodeling home improvement
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