Associated Press

"Exam" by Flickr User Alberto G. / (CC x 2.0)

Illinois students' scores for the ACT college entrance exam have increased statewide for 2017 as the number of students taking the test has dropped.

Students posted an average 21.4 score across all four subjects on the exam. The statewide score is the highest in the last five years.

But, while test scores are up, the number of test takers has dropped by about 21,500 since 2016.

Tests show that the remains in a suburban Philadelphia grave are indeed those of a 19th century serial killer, quelling rumors that he had conned his way out of execution and escaped from prison.

A judge approved the exhumation of Dr. H. H. Holmes' grave earlier this year.

Descendants requested it for a series called "American Ripper" on the History Channel. Part of the show looked at whether Holmes escaped, and scientists' findings were revealed in this week's final episode.

Photo by SC National Guard / (CC X 2.0)

A Chicago suburb is offering 10 free houses to people in Texas who have lost their homes to Harvey.

Harvey, Ill., spokesman Sean Howard said that volunteer tradesmen and carpenters are going to the homes this weekend to prepare them for new residents.

The city acquired the homes due to unpaid taxes, according to news reports. Instead of selling the properties to investors, the city is making them available to storm victims. Renovations could take about six weeks.

"Hurricane Harvey Flooding - 8/26/17 to ?" by Flickr user Jill Carlson ( / (CC x 2.0)

The Illinois National Guard says it's sending seven airmen and a C-130 cargo plane to help with the response to Hurricane Harvey in Texas.

The guard says the members of the 182nd Airlift Wing will leave Peoria on Thursday for Dallas and are expected to help with storm relief and recovery for the next three to four days.

Harvey has weakened and its floodwaters are dropping in much of the Houston area, but the death toll from the storm is rising.  

Chicago Police Department

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson is poised to receive a new kidney from his son.

The superintendent who disclosed in January after suffering a public dizzy spell that he's on a waiting list for a kidney transplant told reporters on Wednesday that 25-year-old Daniel Johnson would be the donor of the kidney.

Johnson did not want to say yet exactly when he will have the surgery but department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said it will be done within the next two weeks.