Erik Runge joined WGN News in November 2013 as a per diem reporter.

Prior to working at WGN, Erik spent three years as a general assignment reporter at Fox 9 Minneapolis, Minnesota. He spent several years in central Kansas where he covered the story of a serial killer named ‘BTK’, which stands for Bind Torture Kill. His work has been seen on NBC Nightly News and he has also reported live for MSNBC after Hurricane Ike crashed into Galveston, Texas. He most recently covered governmental shutdowns, a state house protest that lasted for weeks and several natural disasters including hurricanes, tornados, wild fires and blizzards.

An Iowa native, Erik earned his bachelor’s degree from University of Iowa. Erik is a life-long Cubs and Bears fan and lives with his dog Cassie.


Recent Articles
  • Priest reinstated after state, church investigators find abuse allegations unfounded

    CHICAGO — A Lakeview Catholic priest has been welcomed back to his parish after both church- and state-led investigations cleared him of sexual misconduct allegations, according to church leaders. Allegations of child abuse leveled against the Rev. Patrick Lee first surfaced in January, some dating back to 1979 when Lee was at Midlothian Church. Cardinal Blase Cupich removed Lee from his current post at Mt. Carmel to allow investigators to do their jobs. In a statement, Cupich said state officials […]

  • Man shot in suburban Walmart parking lot

    ROLLING MEADOWS, Ill. — At least one man was shot Saturday evening in the parking lot of a Walmart in Rolling Meadows. One area worker was on break at the time of the shooting- and all Kenny Nomiki could think about was getting in his car and getting down. His car and a co-workers car both took bullets, but they were unharmed. Police are still trying to sort everything out, but one man was taken to the hospital with a […]

  • Puerto Rico Festival goes on despite past issues, includes new elements

    CHICAGO — Despite the rain, thousands of people lined the streets of Humboldt Park on Saturday for the annual Puerto Rico Festival. After years of mismanagement of the festival, it almost didn’t happen this year. A non-profit organization stepped in and was able to plan the festival in just two months. Carlos Jimenez, the Executive Director of the festival, took over after allegations of mismanagement of thousands of dollars were brought against the festival’s previous organization who were in charge […]

  • Baby of slain teen Marlen Ochoa-Lopez dies after weeks on life support

    CHICAGO — The baby of slain Chicago teen Marlen Ochoa-Lopez died Friday after weeks of being on life support. Baby Yovanny Jadiel Lopez passed away Friday morning, according to a statement from family spokeswoman Julie Contreras. He was in intensive care for 53 days with severe brain damage since arriving to Christ Hospital. “It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of baby Yovanny Jadiel Lopez,” the statement reads. “He passed away this Friday June 14, […]

  • Charges pending for off-duty cop after car crashes into restaurant, killing woman

    CHICAGO — An off-duty Chicago police officer is facing charges after he drove into the side of  restaurant early Sunday morning, killing a 34-year-old woman. Marquita Reed was out with friends when they decided to grab some late-night food at Tony’s Philly Steak in the 1700 block of West 87th Street. Reed and a 35-year-old friend were sitting at a table and waiting for their food around 2:25 a.m. Sunday when a black Toyota Corolla crashed through the side of […]

  • R. Kelly pleads not guilty to 11 new sex assault charges

    CHICAGO — R&B singer R. Kelly pleaded not guilty Thursday to 11 additional sex-related charges, including four counts that carry a maximum prison term of 30 years. The new charges are in addition to 10 counts of sexual abuse prosecutors filed against Kelly in February. Robert Kelly, 52, appeared in court Thursday for a hearing that lasted roughly 15 minutes. Cook County Judge Lawrence Flood could’ve revoked or changed Kelly’s existing $1 million bond — but declined to do so. […]

  • Woman, 40, fatally shot during domestic incident in West Town

    CHICAGO — A 40-year-old woman was shot and killed Tuesday evening during a domestic incident in the city’s West Town neighborhood. Fire officials said the woman was shot inside an apartment building on the 2200 block of West Grand Avenue. It is unclear what led up to the shooting. People who were walking by the area said they saw a man get taken into a police vehicle. No further information was provided.   Update: An original version of this story […]

  • Family of slain pregnant woman pushing for home birth laws

      BATAVIA, Ill. — The family of a murdered pregnant woman met with an Illinois lawmaker Tuesday in hopes of putting new measures in place to protect newborns. Marlen Ochoa-Lopez, 19, was nine months pregnant when she was lured to a South Side home in April and murdered. Her son Yovani was cut from her womb. The oxygen supply was cut off for baby Yovani and caused brain damage, doctors said. When he was finally taken to Christ Hospital, the Ochoa-Lopez’s […]

  • Illinois lawmakers discuss where Chicago casino will be located

    CHICAGO — Now that gambling has passed, the first order of business for Chicago will be to figure out where the casino should go and where all people can place a bet. Gov. J.B. Pritzker, state lawmakers and Mayor Lori Lightfoot finally found some common ground on a gaming bill that allows for expanded gaming in Chicago and a Chicago casino. “The first step is to get a feasibility study up and going to make sure the economic model meaning […]

  • What employees need to know about Illinois’ marijuana bill

    CHICAGO — Lawmakers made history in Springfield on Friday by passing a bill to legalize recreational marijuana. Governor JB Pritzker has said he will sign it. Starting Jan. 1, 2020, Illinois residents ages 21 and over can legally purchase and possess up to 30 grams of marijuana. Employment lawyer Scott Cruz sat on panels in Springfield to discuss what the law would mean for people and their bosses. He said employees may have many misconceptions. “Employees are going to think, […]

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