Ohio news briefs

December 31, 2013

Court rejects condemned Ohio inmate’s appeal

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A federal appeals court has rejected arguments by a condemned Ohio killer facing a never-tried execution method that he received poor legal assistance before sentencing.

Attorneys for death row inmate Dennis McGuire have repeatedly argued his original lawyers didn’t do a good enough job presenting evidence about his tough childhood to the jury deliberating his fate.

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati turned down the latest appeal Monday by McGuire. He faces execution Jan. 16 for the 1989 rape and fatal stabbing of Joy Stewart, who was pregnant at the time.

The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction is expected to announce soon which of two types of lethal injection processes it will use to put the 53-year-old McGuire to death.


Ohio man in court after son killed in accident

MARYSVILLE, Ohio (AP) — A central Ohio man remains in jail after state troopers say he drove away without talking to authorities after running over his 4-year-old son who had fallen out of a van.

A $500,000 bond was continued at a hearing in Marysville Municipal Court Monday for defendant Natividad de Jesus Hernandez of Columbus.

Judge Michael Grigsby set a preliminary hearing for Jan. 6. A message was left with Hernandez’ attorney.

Hernandez was arrested Thursday after showing up at a hospital where his son died after the accident earlier in Union County.

Hernandez was charged with failure to exchange information after an accident.

State Highway Patrol troopers say the boy fell out the van his father was driving and was run over near a construction site northwest of Columbus.


OH man charged in pizza driver death due in court

CAMBRIDGE, Ohio (AP) — A bond hearing is set for an eastern Ohio man accused of killing a pizza delivery driver.

Adam Charles Burris of Cambridge is expected to face a judge Monday for the first time since he was charged in the slaying of 26-year-old Kayla Thompson.

Authorities in Guernsey County say that Thompson, also of Cambridge, didn’t return from a delivery run on Thursday.

The sheriff there says Burris was later taken into custody and led authorities to the woman’s body near a boat ramp at Dillon State Park in neighboring Muskingum County.

No attorney information was available for Burris.


Toledo public housing complexes go smoke-free

TOLEDO (AP) — Seven public housing complexes in Toledo are going smoke-free starting Wednesday.

The Blade (http://bit.ly/1djU8Zx ) reports that the tobacco-free policy adopted by the Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority’s board of directors in June follows a recommendation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

It urged public housing authorities as well as the owners and managers of multifamily housing rental assistance programs to prohibit smoking in their properties.

The change affects about 850 of the 3,100 units managed by the housing authority, which operates 25 public housing developments in the county.

Under the new policy, smoking is not permitted in any rooms of apartments and common areas in the buildings. Areas outside the buildings will be designated for resident smoking.


SW Ohio Democrat may enter race for governor

CINCINNATI (AP) — A Cincinnati-area Democrat is ready to decide whether he’ll enter the race for Ohio governor.

Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune plans on announcing his decision Monday afternoon in Cincinnati.

If he enters the race, it would set up a Democratic primary with Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald.


Cause of Ohio fairgrounds fire still not known

Sun 3:51 pm

Sat 10:40 am

GREENVILLE, Ohio (AP) — The cause of a fire at a fairgrounds in western Ohio still remains unknown.

The fire broke out Friday night at the Darke County Fairgrounds in Greenville and heavily damaged a 4H building.

Fire officials in Greenville haven’t released any information about the fire or a damage estimate.

The fairgrounds is near the Indiana state line and about 30 miles northwest of Dayton.

WDTN in Dayton reports that investigators with the State Fire Marshal’s office are assisting with the investigation.

Democrats have been setting their sights on taking back the governor’s office from Republican John Kasich. But a primary could be costly for the party and the candidates.

Portune has spent the last two decades as either a Cincinnati city councilman or Hamilton County commissioner.


Ohio man dies after fatally shooting wife’s friend

LOGAN, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio man has died just days after police say he fatally shot his estranged wife’s friend and then himself in a southeast Ohio mall parking lot.

Investigators say the suspect in the shooting on Christmas Day blamed his wife’s friend for the breakup of his marriage.

The coroner in Hocking County says 30-year-old Phillip Loschiavo of Bremen died Friday night and that an autopsy was performed on Saturday.

Police say he shot and killed 30-year-old Teresa Bickley of Glouster on Wednesday in the parking lot of the Hocking Valley Mall in Logan.

Authorities say the shooting happened in front of his estranged wife and their two children. They were not injured.


Ohio Turnpike vendors to give out free coffee

BEREA, Ohio (AP) — Vendors at service plazas along the Ohio Turnpike will be offering motorists a free cup of coffee on New Year’s Eve.

Turnpike officials say the free coffee will be available beginning at 10 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 7 a.m. New Year’s Day.

Those offering the free coffee will APlus Convenience Stores, Burger King, Hardees and McDonald’s.

The turnpike is on pace to have 3.7 million people this year traveling on the northern Ohio roadway that connects Indiana and Pennsylvania.


Ohio casino worker, 2 others charged with theft

CINCINNATI (AP) — A casino employee in Cincinnati and two others have been indicted on charges accusing them in a cheating scheme.

The indictment say the employee misused a rewards program at Cincinnati’s Horseshoe Casino that allowed the two others to essentially gamble for free.

The Cincinnati Enquirer (http://cin.ci/1dL7VpW ) reports that the employee used fake names to create 18 rewards program cards for her boyfriend and another man.

The cards don’t have any cash value, but the casino can give gamblers rewards in the program that can be used when they gamble.

The newspaper says a casino internal audit uncovered the scheme.