WCIA 3 News at 6:00 p.m.

WCIA 3 News at 6:00 p.m.


AND COOLING.” Tonight Mostly clear, with a low around 58. North wind around 6 mph becoming calm in the evening. Saturday Sunny, with a high near 85. Light and variable wind. ((COURTNEY)) SHE WAS KILLED MORE THAN TWO YEARS AGO, HOW FAMILY AND FRIENDS FINALLY GOT THE CHANCE TO SAY GOODBYE TO YINGYING ZHANG TODAY AN AUDIT PAINTED A TERRIBLE PICTURE OF ILLINOIS’ CHILD WELFARE AGENCY, HOW INVESTIGATORS AND CASE WORKERS ARE GOING BACK TO SCHOOL ((COLE)) THE COLISEUM AT THE STATE FAIR IS BACK OPEN. COMING UP, WE TELL YOU ABOUT A PAIR OF BROTHERS THAT HAVE A SPECIAL BOND WITH THE BUILDING FROM YOUR LOCAL NEWSLEADER, THIS IS THE WCIA 3 NEWS AT SIX. “It wasn’t supposed to be this way.” ((PAUL)) A HELPER… GIVER AND A KIND PERSON. THAT’S HOW LOVED ONES DESCRIBE YINGYING ZHANG — AND THAT’S THE MEMORY THEY HOPE TO CARRY WITH THEM FOREVER. GOOD EVENING… I’M PAUL CICCHINI ((JESSICA)) AND I’M JESSICA KUNZ JENNIFER IS OFF TONIGHT ZHANG WAS KIDNAPPED AND KILLED TWO YEARS AGO. SHE WAS A VISITING CHINESE SCHOLAR AT THE U OF I. BRENDT CHRISTENSEN WAS SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR HER MURDER. TODAY — HUNDREDS TOOK TIME TO TALK ABOUT WHAT ZHANG MEANT TO THEM AND THE COMMUNITY. WCIA THREES COURTNEY BUNTING IS LIVE IN URBANA. COURTNEY — THIS WAS THEIR FIRST OFFICIAL CHANCE TO SAY GOODBYE. ((COURTNEY)) MORE THAN 150 PEOPLE FILLED THE SANCTUARY. MANY OF THEM… IN SUPPORT OF SOMEONE THEY’D NEVER MET. BUT IT DIDN’T MATTER… THIS WAS A STORY ALMOST THE WHOLE COMMUNITY HEARD ABOUT. AND THEY WANTED TO BE THERE TO SHOW THEY CARED. NATS OF SONG “This is my daughter. As her father, whenever I think of her, my heart longs for her beyond words.” IT’S ANY PARENTS’ WORST NIGHTMARE TO BURY A CHILD. BUT FOR THE ZHANG FAMILY… IT’S ALL THEY WISH THEY COULD DO. TODAY WAS THE CLOSEST THEY MAY EVER GET TO A FUNERAL. “It was heartbreaking. I could not stay home.” FOR PEOPLE LIVING IN THE AREA… IT MEANT JUST AS MUCH FOR THEM TO BE PART OF IT. JUDITH “To feel that such a young lady in the prime of her life could’ve could’ve been murdered in such a way is like… it’s just heartbreaking.” ZHANG’S FATHER AND BROTHER SPOKE TO HER MEMORY. THEY TALKED ABOUT THEIR FAMILY SITUATION… HOW SHE WAS THE FIRST TO GET A DEGREE. SHE WAS THE TOP OF HER CLASS IN HIGH SCHOOL. ON TOP THAT.. SHE VOLUNTEERED TO TEACH IN RURAL AREAS OF CHINA. “Yingying was a girl with a big dream. She had a clear plan for the future, and she had the brightest smile I’ve ever seen.” LEAD PASTOR CHUCK MOORE, SPOKE TO HOW THE COMMUNITY CAME TOGETHER TO HELP HER FAMILY. “To members of the Illinois community at the university. You made your resources available, not because you were trying to protect your reputation, but because you cared.” THOUGH WHAT IS PHYSICALLY LEFT OF YINGYING ZHANG MAY NEVER BE RECOVERED. WHAT SHE LEFT BEHIND IN OTHER WAYS… COULD NEVER BE WIPED AWAY. “Yingying will always be the brightest star in my heart whether living beside us on earh or shining in heaven forever.” ((COURTNEY)) ZHANG’S REMAINS HAVE YET TO BE FOUND. AN ATTORNEY FOR THE FAMILY SAYS THEY COULD BE IN A LANDFILL NEAR DANVILLE. THEY WOULD ALSO BE SMALLER THAN A CELL PHONE. INVESTIGATORS ARE WORKING TO DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT IT WILL BE WORTH IT TO DO A FULL SEARCH FOR THEM. REPORTING LIVE IN URBANA COURTNEY BUNTING WCIA THREE YOUR LOCAL NEWS LEADER. THANKS COURTNEY ((JESSICA)) THE U OF I CREATED AN ENDOWMENT FUND IN ZHANG’S HONOR. IT WILL BE CALLED YINGYING’S FUND AND WILL BE AVAILABLE TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS IN CRISIS. DONATIONS OPENED UP WEDNESDAY. TO FIND A LINK TO THE DONATION WEBSITE… HEAD TO WCIA.COM. ((JESSICA)) WE HAVE NEW INFORMATION WE NOW KNOW THE NAMES OF TWO PEOPLE KILLED IN SEPARATE CRASHES IN VERMILION COUNTY. 46-YEAR OLD-KURT BERGMANN OF JANESVILLE, WISCONSIN WAS THE SEMI DRIVER KILLED IN A WRECK ON I-74 LAST THURSDAY. TWO SEMIS COLLIDED AND BOTH CAUGHT FIRE. IN THE OTHER CRASH… 18-YEAR-OLD DAISY GARCIA HIGHTOWER — OF CATLIN — WAS KILLED. THAT HAPPENED TUESDAY AT COUNTY ROAD 22- HUNDRED NORTH AND STATE LINE ROAD ((PAUL)) THIS IS AN UPDATE — STATE LEADERS ARE TRYING TO CRACK DOWN ON SPEEDING. JULY 24TH WAS EVEN SINGLED OUT AS SPEED AWARENESS DAY … BUT WERE PEOPLE LISTENING? THE RESULTS FROM THAT DAY ARE IN — ALMOST 880 SPEEDING TICKETS WERE HANDED OUT. OVER 680 WARNINGS WERE ISSUED. ALMOST 400 CITATIONS FOR OTHER TRAFFIC- RELATED OFFENSES WERE ALSO WRITTEN. ((PAUL)) POLICE IN VERMILION COUNTY ARE INVESTIGATING A DRIVE-BY SHOOTING. IT HAPPENED ON WEDNESDAY NIGHT IN THE 300 BLOCK OF MCKINLEY STREET IN WESTVILLE. THE WESTVILLE POLICE CHIEF TELLS US… NOBODY WAS HURT. THEY DO NOT HAVE ANY SUSPECTS… BUT THE DRIVER WAS IN A SILVER VEHICLE. THEY ARE STILL INVESTIGATING. ((JESSICA)) WE HAVE A FOLLOW UP ON A STORY THAT GAINED NATIONAL ATTENTION. POLICE SAY A FORD COUNTY MAN ACCUSED OF BOMBING A MINNESOTA MOSQUE AND ATTEMPTING TO BOMB THE CHAMPAIGN WOMEN’S HEALTH CENTER HAD A CACHE OF GUNS AND ASSUALT RIFLES. THEY WERE ALTERED TO BE FULLY AUTOMATIC. AN F-B-I AGENT TESTFIED MICHAEL HARI HAD FOUR RIFLES WITH THE SERIAL NUMBERS SCRATCHED OFF. THE AGENT FOUND THE GUNS IN A DUFFEL BAG AT HARI’S FRIEND’S HOUSE IN CLARENCE IN FEBRUARY LAST YEAR. HARI IS AWAITING TRIAL IN BOTH MINNESTOA AND ILLINOIS. ((JESSICA)) D-C-F-S HAS COME UNDER INTENSE SCRUTINY THIS YEAR… AFTER SEVERAL CHILDREN WHO HAD CASES WITH THEM DIED. ((PAUL)) WE WENT TO THE CHILD PROTECTION ACADEMY AT U-I-S TODAY. THEY TRAIN CASE WORKERS AND INVESTIGATORS TO BETTER SPOT AND REPORT KIDS WHO MIGHT BE IN DANGER. W-C-I-A 3’S GABRIELLE FRANKLIN JOINS US LIVE FROM OUR CAPITOL NEWSROOM. GABRIELLE — HOW DOES THIS WORK? ((GABRIELLE)) THE TRAINING MODEL CALLED PROJECT FORECAST WALKS THE WORKERS THROUGH REAL- LIFE SCENARIOS…SHOWI NG THEM HOW TO KEEP CHILDREN IN ILLINOIS SAFE. nat: “He has multiple injuries in different spots on his body. So I am a mandated reporter, by state law I do have to call the hotline and let them know.” THIS IS JUST A REENACTMENT. BUT UNFORTUNATELY…S CENES LIKE THIS PLAY OUT AROUND ILLINOIS AND THE REST OF THE NATION. THAT’S WHY THE CHILD PROTECTION TRAINING ACADEMY AT U-I-S TRAINS FRONTLINE WORKERS ABOUT HOW TO BEST PREPARE FOR THESE KIND OF SITUATIONS. “Other industries use simulation as a way to get a sense of what to expect when you do this job. But child welfare really didn’t have that kind of realism or those kinds of environments that give people a better idea of I know how I will feel when I am doing this job.” EARLIER THIS YEAR — GOVERNOR PRITZKER CALLED FOR A REVIEW OF THE AGENCY. D-C-F-S ALSO ANNOUNCED IT HAS A NEW PRACTICE MODEL FOCUS ON CHILD AND FAMILY TEAM MEETINGS… THEY ALSO WERE TRYING TO REDUCE CASELOADS BY HIRING MORE STAFF. MORE THAN 700 CASEWORKERS HAVE BEEN TRAINED BY THE ACADEMY SINCE 2015. ORGANIZERS SAY ADDING SCENARIOS IN AN ACTUAL MEDICAL SETTING MAKES A BIG DIFFERENCE. “Understanding the dialogue you have to have between the medical provider when you are getting information in an ER setting, you can imagine what kind of choas and constant distractions in an ER, you have to find the right way to communicate.” NOT ONLY ARE FACILITATORS HOPING THIS WILL BETTER TODAY’S CASEWORKERS…TH EY ARE ALSO LOOKING FORWARD TO THIS HELPING THE INDUSTRY’S FUTURE. “We need a sustainable workforce so our communities are better served. When you have rapid turnover, people who aren’t prepared to go out and do the job very well, they get overwhelmed and they leave. We need people who will stick it out and build those relationships so we have a sustainable workforce and sustainable community and serve children and families better.” ((GABRIELLE)) THE TRAINING IS MADE POSSIBLE THROUGH A SAMSHA FEDERAL GRANT. ALL THREE U OF I CAMPUSES COLLABORATED TO TEACH THESE WORKERS ALL OVER THE STATE. THANKS GABRIELLE ((PAUL)) SOME U OF I WORKERS PLAN TO STRIKE WHEN INCOMING FRESHMAN MOVE IN. FOOD SERVICE AND BUILDING SERVICE WORKERS DELIVERED THE INTENT TO STRIKE TO THE PRESIDENT’S OFFICE. THEY SAY… IF NOTHING CHANGES AT THE BARGAINING TABLE — THEY’ILL STRIKE ON MOVE-IN DAY. THEY SAY… UNDER STAFFING IS A MAJOR ISSUE. THE UNION IS IN NEGOTIATIONS WITH THE U OF I RIGHT NOW. ((JESSICA)) WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO BE A CROSSING GUARD? FOR ONE MAN IT WAS A STINT SERVING HIS COUNTRY. WHY HE FELT THE NEED TO HELP KIDS GET TO SCHOOL. ((PAUL)) ALSO TONIGHT — “After 118 years, it was probably time to have a little work done on it” THE DOORS ARE OPEN ONCE AGAIN, HOW THIS CENTURY-PLUS OLD BUILDING IS SET TO SEE SOME MORE BLUE-RIBBON ACTION. Tonight Mostly clear, with a low around 58. North wind around 6 mph becoming calm in the evening. Saturday Sunny, with a high near 85. Light and variable wind. “Now stormtracker weather.”

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