The following stories are among today’s top news of central Illinois.

Victim found at Knoxville, Route 6 interchange identified

PEORIA — It’s not yet clear what killed the woman found near the interchange of Illinois Route 6 and Knoxville Avenue on Sunday morning, but authorities have identified her as 35-year-old Inita Thomas.

Thomas was found alongside the roadway of Route 6 south of the overpass, at about 7:20 a.m. Sunday. An autopsy conducted Monday morning was inconclusive and will remain so pending full toxicology results, Peoria County Coroner Jamie Harwood said in a news release. Thomas did not suffer any direct trauma, Harwood said in the release, and it remains unclear how she ended up at that interchange.

The case is under investigation by the Illinois State Police and the coroner’s office.

Check pjstar.com for more on this story.

Washington police alerted to scam

WASHINGTON — The Washington Police Department was recently made aware of a scam by a resident who refused to be a victim.

The scam begins with a person receiving a priority mail package, containing a letter asking the recipient to take the enclosed $1,900 cashier’s check and deposit it in the recipient’s bank with the funds being made available in 24 hours. The recipient is asked to withdraw $1,600, keeping $300 for payment for being part of a Kroger, Walmart and Target secret shopper project. At each store, the recipient must evaluate the store’s customer service and purchase iTunes gift cards: $500 at Kroger, $550 at Walmart and $500 at Target, each in $100 or $50 denominations. The recipient can purchase $50 in groceries at Walmart for personal use.

The recipient is not allowed to shop using a Kroger Plus card, Target RED Card or Walmart member card — even though Walmart doesn’t have memberships — or reveal that the store’s services are being evaluated. Finally, the recipient is asked to send the numbers on the backs of the iTunes gift cards in an email with the results of the survey questions. Once this is done, “the scammers have the iTunes numbers and they can use the cards for cash,” said Washington Police Chief Mike McCoy. “And when the bank discovers the cashier’s check isn’t valid, (the recipient) will be liable.”

Check pekintimes.com for more on this.

Shooting is city’s 22nd homicide of 2018

PEORIA — An overnight shooting at a party marks the city’s 22nd criminal homicide of the year.

At 2:24 a.m. Wednesday, Peoria police responded to report of an individual who had been shot in the area of Spring and Northeast Monroe streets, said department spokeswoman Amy Dotson. Officers located an adult male with gunshot wounds inside of a building in the 500 block of Spring Street. The victim was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. He later was pronounced dead, Dotson said. His name was not immediately released.

The shooting happened at some sort of party, said Dotson. She was unsure if the gathering had been a Christmas celebration. Though police did not specify the address, the party had been in the upstairs of a building. There is no suspect information at this time. This incident is under investigation.

Check pjstar.com for more on this story.