by The Chicago Times Staff

June 3, 2021

ST. CHARLES, IL – Around 4:30 a.m. on the Tri-State Tollway a semi-trailer carrying fireworks rolled over and caught fire closing northbound lanes and causing major delays for morning commuters.  The rollover occurred near St. Charles Road, blocking the Eisenhower Expressway and North Avenue to traffic.  The truck driver was able to narrowly escape before the truck caught fire.  Multiple fire departments were called to put out the fire.


by The Chicago Times Staff

June 4, 2021

PEARL HARBOR — Nearly 80 years after the Imperial Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor a St. Charles sailor’s remains have been identified as Electrician’s Mate 3rd Class Leslie P. Delles.

Delles was served abord the USS Oklahoma, which was docked at Ford Island on December 7, 1941, when the battleship was attacked by Japanese aircraft.  The ship capsized after being hit by multiple torpedoes.  Delles, 21, was one among the 429 crewmembers aboard who perished.

From 1941 to June 1944, the crew’s remains were interred in Hawaii’s Halawa and Nu’uanu cemeteries.

At the end of WWII, the American Graves Registration Service exhumed remains of the fallen US servicemen from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks, where medical examiners attempted to identify the deceased servicemen.

Only 35 personnel from the USS Oklahoma were first identified.  The unidentified remains were later interred in 46 sites at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, also known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu, Hawaii.  In October 1949, a military board ruled that individuals who could not be recognized were unrecoverable, including Delles.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency then disinterred the unknown remains of USS Oklahoma servicemen in 2015 for study.  Delles was discovered on February 12 through DNA testing and anthropological study.

According to the DPAA, a rosette will be placed next to Delles’ name on the Courts of the Missing at the Punchbowl to indicate he has been found.

According to a 1940 Chicago newspaper article given by the DPAA, Delles enlisted in the Navy at the age of 19 with his twin brother, Lester Delles.  The brothers enlisted to acquire a new trade, according to the newspaper at the time; Leslie wanted to be an electrician, while Lester wanted to study aviation mechanics.  Lester survived

Leslie Delles will be laid to rest on October 23 in Sutter, California.

The Imperial Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor killed 2,403 Americans and wounded 1,178.


DuPage County State’s Attorney

June 1, 2021

DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin and Illinois State Police Captain Dan Likens announced that bond was set for a Schaumburg man charged with shooting at a moving vehicle while traveling on an expressway in Itasca. Micaro Masri, 26 (d.o.b. 11-2-1994) of the 2300 block of Discovery Drive, appeared in Bond Court on May 30, 2021, where Judge James Orel set bond at $250,000 with 10% to apply in accordance with a previously issued arrest warrant which was issued on May 13, 2021. Masri has been charged with one count of Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm, a Class 1 Felony.

At approximately 2:07 a.m., August 24, 2020, 9-1-1 emergency received a call from an individual who alleged that while driving on I-290 westbound near Thorndale Road in Itasca, a vehicle, later determined to be a Nissan Altima, drove very close to his car and flashed its lights. The 9-1-1 caller further alleged that the Nissan then pulled alongside his car, rolled down his window and fired a shot at the car. An extensive investigation led by the Illinois State Police led authorities to Masri as the man suspected in the shooting. On May 30, 2021, officers with the Schaumburg Police Department located Masri at his home. Masri was interviewed at the Schaumburg Police Department and was subsequently arrested following the interview. 

“In recent months we have seen an alarming increase in the number of highway shootings,” Berlin said. “Shooting from a moving vehicle at another moving vehicle, as alleged in this case, puts not only the victim in danger but also any other motorist who may be on the road at that time. Make no mistake, the type of dangerous behavior alleged in this case will be met with the full force of the law. I commend the Illinois State Police for the work they did on this case resulting in charges against Mr. Masri. I would like to thank the Schaumburg Police Department for their fine work in locating Mr. Masri. I would also like to thank Assistant State’s Attorneys Anthony Pasquini and Connor Greene for their efforts in bringing charges against this defendant.” 

“The Illinois State Police – Division of Criminal Investigation takes this and all types of criminal activity very seriously,” stated Likens. “The Division of Criminal Investigations will continue to thoroughly investigate any and all allegations to assist with bringing those who attempt to harm those we serve to justice,” he concluded.

Masri’s next court appearance is scheduled for June 28, 2021, for arraignment in front of Judge Alex McGimpsey. In addition to his monetary bond, Judge Orel also ordered additional conditions should Masri make bond including electronic home monitoring, no contact with the victims and relinquishing any dangerous weapons in his possession.   

Members of the public are reminded that this complaint contains only charges and is not proof of the defendant’s guilt.  A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the government’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

DuPage County State’s Attorney


by Bernard P. Lawson, The Chicago Times

June 3, 2021

WASHINGTON — As New York City looks to confront a recent rise in violent crime, Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez urged Thursday that authorities should stop building jails and instead focus on underlying public health issues.

New York Democrats, including AOC, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, and Rep. Jamaal Bowman, have asked Congress to appropriate $400,000 for a program called Stand Up To Violence which aims to combat gun violence through therapy and community outreach. 

“If we want to reduce violent crime, if we want to reduce the number of people in our jails, the answer is to stop building more of them,” AOC said.

AOC and her colleagues are requesting congressional cash through a procedure known as “earmarking,” a recently revived procedure that allows politicians to funnel financial support for personal causes in their districts.  The Stand Up To Violence program is housed at a hospital in AOC’s congressional district.

The Democrats’ request comes as New York City deals with an increase in gun violence as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.  According to the New York Police Department, shootings were up 86 percent in May.

AOC has admitted that she supports therapy and has even committed herself to using psychotherapy to cope with the “extraordinary traumatizing” events of Jan 6th at the US Capitol.  AOC said she did not know if she was going to live to the end of the day.  Perhaps she can tell her story to the residents of Chicago who live that fear daily and do not have the same protection.

Bernard P. Lawson, National Political Reporter/Columnist for The Chicago Times.  Views and comments expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the official position of The Chicago Times.


by James R. Scott, The Chicago Times

June 3, 2021

CHICAGO — Michael Williams, 30, is charged with attempted murder, aggravated violence, and felony gun possession for the shooting of his toddler and ex-girlfriend Tuesday night, which occurred after Williams persistently contacted and texted his 30-year-old ex.  The former couple had three children, including a 20-month-old boy who was being held by Williams’ ex-girlfriend.

Chicago Police said a POD camera captured Williams walking into the gangway of the woman’s building around 11:45 p.m.  According to CPD, the victim heard pounding on her kitchen door and spotted Williams standing outside.

CPD said Williams fired multiple shots into the apartment after breaking the glass window on the door with his hands.  Williams’ ex-girlfriend was grazed on the finger and the back.  The 20-month-old was wounded in the legs several times.  CPD sources said the child was still recovering in a local hospital.

Williams was pulled over early Wednesday in the 7200 block of North Sheridan.  When he was captured, he was bleeding from a cut hand, and blood was matched to the broken glass of the victims’ kitchen window.  CPD said a .40-caliber handgun was also found in Williams’ possession.   Under interrogation, Williams confessed to detectives that he fired at the two victims.

In 2011, Williams was sentenced to a year of conditional discharge endangering the life of another child he had with the current female victim.  Williams, a father of four, is a general laborer for Midwest Cannabis Corp.

Williams was ordered jailed without bail by Judge Mary Marubio on Thursday and is scheduled to appear in court again on June 11.


by Bobby Fleet, The Chicago Times

June 2, 2021

CHICAGO – The Second City returns to the stage with limited shows after more than a year’s absence due to the pandemic.  The company’s first production, Happy to Be Here, will debut May 7 at North and Wells.

Current COVID-19 protocols will be in place with mandatory pre-show questionnaires, and temperature checks at the door, and masks for the audience.  The night’s feature will consist of one act of improvised sketches.  According to executive producer Jon Carr, the show is a practice run to get the cast back into shape after the pandemic hiatus.