Jackson addresses police shooting town hall meeting
Cleveland's mayor has assured community members that they will be kept informed on the investigation into last week's police shooting that left two unarmed people dead in a hail of nearly 140 shots fired by officers. Mayor Frank Jackson spoke at a meeting in a church basement last night that became heated at times as some 100 community members accused officers of murder. Police Chief Michael McGrath told them it could take up to six weeks for an administrative investigation to be completed. Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams were killed last Thursday after Russell led officers on a 25-minute chase. Police said use of force was justified because Russell rammed a cruiser and nearly hit an officer.
Dovilla hangs on for General Assembly win
Democrats have lost a tight Ohio House race in Cuyahoga County. A recount completed Thursday in confirmed that state Rep. Mike Dovilla of Berea, the Republican incumbent, has beaten Democrat Matt Patten of Strongsville. One seat remains up in the air. Republican Rep. Al Landis of Dover has a 15-vote edge over Democrat Joshua O'Farrell of New Philadelphia in a recount to be completed today. The win in Cuyahoga County narrows Democrats’ chances of controlling 40 seats in the next legislative session. By hitting the 40-seat mark, Democrats could block the GOP majority from more easily placing ballot issues before voters.
T.J. Lane’s attorney wants statements made to police tossed
The attorney for the 18-year old charged in the deadly Chardon High School shooting early this year wants a judge to throw out statements made during police questioning. T.J. Lane’s attorney said Thursday that authorities advised him of his rights when they first questioned him but not before they talked with him a second time. Prosecutors say investigators followed procedures and that Lane told them he wanted to talk after the shootings that killed three students last February. Lane has filed an insanity plea and is being tried as an adult. He faces life in prison.
Kasich expected to sign tougher bill on “spice” and “bath salts”
Governor Kasich is expected to sign a new law that seeks to stop the process of chemists changing synthetic drugs’ molecular content to keep them legal. The Ohio House followed the Senate in passing the legislation this week that bans the practice of adding extra compounds to the drugs such as “Spice” and “bath salts.” A new study shows young people are some of the biggest abusers of synthetic marijuana.
Husted says he’s not challenging Kasich in 2014
Ohio's elections chief has squelched rumors he might be preparing to challenge Gov. John Kasich in a Republican primary two years from now. Secretary of State Jon Husted told reporters Thursday that if he runs for anything in 2014 it would be for re-election to his current job. The 45-year-old Husted has served as state senator and speaker of the Ohio House.
Judge rejects new trial in Amish beard-cutting case
A judge in Cleveland has rejected a request for a new trial made by the leader of an Amish group convicted in hair-cutting attacks on members of his own faith. Federal judge Dan Polster on Thursday also declined to overturn the convictions of Samuel Mullet Sr. and his followers who joined the appeal. A jury last fall convicted Mullet and 15 other Amish men and women of hate crimes for a series of hair- and beard- cutting attacks stemming from a religious dispute. Mullet's attorney had argued that newly discovered evidence that included notes from an Associated Press reporter's interview with Mullet should allow him another trial. But the judge wrote that the evidence was not new and could have been sought before the trial began.
Precious metal ad licensing shot down
A federal judge has ruled that an Ohio law aimed at curbing gold- and silver-related theft by barring precious metals dealers from advertising without a license is unconstitutional. U.S. District Court Judge Michael Watson in Columbus ordered the Ohio Department of Commerce late Wednesday to stop enforcing the Precious Metals Dealers Act. Liberty Coins, of Delaware, filed the lawsuit when it was threatened with closure for refusing to pay fines and obtain a license to advertise.
Supreme Court upholds regulators’ call that AEP made too much money
The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that utility regulators made the right call when they determined American Electric Power made so much money in parts of Ohio that it should pay a penalty. In a 6-1 decision, the court rejected AEP’s argument that a 42-million dollar penalty was based on a law too vague to be enforceable. That 2008 law made it easier for utilities to raise rates but also said their profits must not be significantly excessive. The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio levied the penalty in 2009 when it says AEP’s Columbus Southern Power made a 21-percent profit.
Second man convicted in YSU fraternity house shooting
A jury has found a second man guilty of murder in a fraternity house shooting at Youngstown State University that left one man dead and 11 others wounded. Jamelle Jackson of Youngstown was convicted Thursday in an Akron court after the trial was moved there because of pretrial publicity in Youngstown. The 20 year old will be sentenced next week. Columbus Jones of Youngstown was convicted earlier this year for his role in the 2011 shooting that killed 25-year old Jamail Johnson. He was sentenced to 92 years in prison.
Supreme Court rules law enforcement must keep murder, rape case DNA
The Ohio Supreme Court says law-enforcement agencies must keep all DNA evidence in rape and murder cases. Before yesterday’s decision, authorities could have destroyed any evidence that existed before 2010 when the law was created. That could have made it impossible for people to appeal their convictions.