Officer Cleared in Shooting:
A Naperville police officer has been cleared in the shooting of a suspect who pointed a silver airsoft gun at a group of officers. DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said officer Jordan Koziel was justified in shooting Zachary Kelley in the incident on January 23. Kelley was outside of a strip mall on West Ogden Avenue when police were called to the scene, due to reports of a suspicious man. When they arrived, Kelley pointed the airsoft gun first at his head, then toward the group of officers. Koziel discharged his weapon 7 times, striking Kelley twice. Kelley’s injuries were non-life threatening. Berlin ruled that the officer made every attempt to bring the incident to a peaceful conclusion, and no criminal charges will be filed.
Guns Into Gardening Tools:
On Tuesday, two activists with the group RAWtools melted guns into gardening tools in a parking lot at North Central College. Shane Claiborne and Mike Martin are traveling the country to spread their message of turning violence into peace, as per their book, “Beating Guns: Hope for People who are Weary of Violence.” As part of their presentation, they took guns that had previously been donated by those no longer wanting them, and burned them in a 2,000-degree foundry. The melted guns are used to create gardening tools, which can then help to bring life to plants and gardens. Martin says they can make about 3 tools from each gun.
Aurora Strong First Responders Scholarship:
Waubonsee Community College is offering a new scholarship to honor the first responders to the Henry Pratt Company shooting on February 15. The Aurora Strong First Responders Scholarship will award $1,000 to a student in the Fire Science, Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic or Criminal Justice programs with the intent to become a police officer. The first scholarship will be awarded for the 2019-2020 school year, and will be given to an applicant who meets the criteria and applied before the February 4 deadline.
Test Drives for Autism:
April is Autism Awareness Month, and people can show their support by taking a test drive. A number of car dealerships in Naperville are teaming up with Turning Pointe Autism Foundation and giving the non-profit $20 for each test drive through the end of the month. This is the ninth year of the event, and each year over $100,000 has been raised. You can find participating dealers on the Turning Pointe website.