Winter weather expected to return to parts of Ohio
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Winter isn't quite over yet in Ohio.
The National Weather Service in Cleveland has issued a winter storm warning beginning early Wednesday for many northern Ohio counties.
Residents in the Toledo area could see 6 to 10 inches of snow. Forecasters say rain will start Tuesday evening and eventually change over to snow after midnight as colder air moves into the region. Wind gusts could reach up to 50 mph. And a glaze of ice is possible.
Parts of central Ohio could get 1 to 3 inches of snow. With area temperatures in the 60s on Tuesday, the precipitation could create slushy driving conditions for Wednesday commuters.
The winter has been especially long and cold in the state, with some cities seeing record snowfall and cold temperatures.
Ohio panel to review gov's tax, education changes
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio legislative panel is scheduled to delve into an election-year policy plan from Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) that includes cutting Ohio's income tax through increases in drilling and tobacco taxes.
The Republican governor released details of his proposal on Tuesday. Testimony on the measure is set to begin Wednesday afternoon in the GOP-led Ohio House.
The bill's prospects amid campaign season are uncertain.
Kasich, who faces re-election this fall, proposes cutting income taxes by 8.5 percent over the next three years, taking the top tax rate to 4.88 percent by 2016. Commercial activity, cigarette and drilling taxes would rise to pay for the reduction.
He also proposes streamlining Ohio's workforce development and poverty programs, tying all public-college funding to graduation rates and expanding vocational and dropout education offerings.
Northeastern Ohio experiences 5th minor earthquake
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) - A fifth minor earthquake has been recorded in an area of northeastern Ohio where state regulators have ordered a gas drilling company to halt operations.
The U.S. Geological Survey reported a 2.1 magnitude earthquake early Tuesday morning, about nine miles southeast of Youngstown. That same area experienced four minor earthquakes Monday.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has said there's nothing indicating that the earthquakes are connected to any injection wells. The department on Monday asked the only oil and gas operator in the area to stop all work until it can test further.
An injection well used to hold wastewater from the fracking process has been tied in recent years to a series of earthquakes in the Youngstown area.
No property damage has been reported from the earthquakes.
OHIO CORRUPTION PROBE
Appeals court to hear Ohio corruption case
CINCINNATI (AP) - A federal appeals court will hear arguments Wednesday involving an ex-Ohio county commissioner appealing his conviction in a wide-ranging public corruption case.
Former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora is asking the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati to overturn his March 2012 convictions on 32 bribery-related offenses, drop four of the charges and grant him a new trial on the remaining 28 charges.
Dimora, a former Democratic Party chairman in Cleveland, is serving a 28-year sentence in a West Virginia prison.
His trial capped an investigation that led to more than 50 convictions involving county officials, employees and contractors who prosecutors say traded bribes for government jobs and contracts.
Dimora argues that the items he received were gifts, not bribes, and that he never tried to hide them.
BAND DIRECTOR-SEX CHARGES
Ohio band director pleads not guilty to charges
NEWARK, Ohio (AP) - A central Ohio band director accused of inappropriate conduct with three students has pleaded not guilty to charges that include sexual battery.
Anthony Miller of Westerville filed a written not guilty plea Tuesday in Licking County.
Authorities say the charges against the 32-year-old Miller reflect his conduct with three females who were students at Newark High School. Miller is an assistant band director there and has been suspended without pay.
A message seeking comment was left Tuesday with Miller's attorney, Brad Koffel. Koffel tells The Advocate in Newark his client is remorseful and is looking to come to a plea agreement with prosecutors.
The charges refer to conduct dating as far back as August 2010 and as recent as June 2013. Miller also is accused of disseminating inappropriate photographs.
DRIVING UNDER INFLUENCE-SENTENCE
Ohioan gets 8 years in prison after DUI citations
LEBANON, Ohio (AP) - A prosecutor says a southwest Ohio man has been sentenced to eight years in prison after he was convicted of driving while under the influence for a seventh time in the last 14 years.
A Warren County Common Pleas judge on Monday sentenced 48-year-old Ralph Pottorf Jr. of Mason, to the maximum sentence allowed under Ohio law after a jury convicted him of operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Pottorf's attorney did not immediately return a call for comment Tuesday.
A statement from county Prosecutor David Fornshell says Pottorf crashed into a fence along U.S. Route 42 in Union Township on Dec. 21. Fornshell says a sheriff's deputy reported Pottorf showed signs of being under the influence of alcohol, and he wouldn't take a breath test.
UK resident sentenced to 16 years on sex charges
WASHINGTON (AP) - A United Kingdom resident has been sentenced to 16 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of coercion and traveling with intent to have sex with an Ohio child.
Richard Castle, 47, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black in Dayton, Ohio.
According to the Justice Department, Castle admitted that he flew to Dayton in June 2011 to engage in illicit sexual relations and stayed approximately three weeks. Castle also admitted that he provided obscene materials, according to the DOJ statement released Tuesday.
A federal grand jury indicted Castle in February 2012. Castle pleaded guilty on Oct. 3, 2013.
Ohio toddler struck by car dies from injuries
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A 2-year-old boy has died of injuries he suffered after being struck by a car in Columbus.
The Columbus Dispatch reports that JayByuante McGrew-Bell died at 7:45 p.m. Tuesday at Nationwide Children's Hospital a day after he was injured.
Police say the toddler ran into the street around 9:40 p.m. Monday and was struck by a car driven by a 26-year-old man. He had been in the hospital in critical condition.
An investigation is continuing.
Ohio county moves 8 most violent prisoners to jail
CLEVELAND (AP) - A juvenile justice center in northeast Ohio has moved eight of its most violent prisoners to the county jail.
Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH'-guh) County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty says the prisoners were transferred following a judicial review. He said Tuesday that a ninth case is pending.
McGinty says moving them from the juvenile facility will make the center safer for employees and other minors detained there.
The Plain Dealer in Cleveland reports that threats and violence at the center has spiked since 2011. The newspaper says threats to staff jumped more than 300 percent, while physical assaults on residents increased by more than 230 percent.
McGinty says those transferred have already been bound over and will be tried as adults on felony charges. He says county jail is a more secure setting.
DRUG DEATHS-OVERDOSE ANTIDOTE
Ohio law increases access to overdose antidote
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) has signed a bill into law allowing friends or family members of addicts to administer a drug overdose antidote without the fear of prosecution.
The legislation is aimed at reducing the state's record-high number of fatal overdoses from heroin and painkillers - which is now the leading cause of accidental death in Ohio, surpassing car crashes.
The bill signed Tuesday allows licensed prescribers to provide the drug naloxone (nuh-LOX'-ohn) to an addict's friends or family members. People administering the drug would be immune from prosecution as long as they call 911 immediately before or after giving the antidote. It also must be obtained through proper channels.
In addition, the bill would make it easier for police and emergency responders to administer the drug.
Ex-Ohio poll worker gets early release from prison
CINCINNATI (AP) - A former Ohio poll worker sentenced to five years in prison for voting illegally on behalf of other people has been released from prison after less than a year behind bars.
Melowese Richardson of Madisonville was released Tuesday after her attorney says she gave him permission to reveal that she has bipolar disorder.
Her attorney, David Singleton, shared Richardson's medical records with Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters.
After reviewing the case, Deters asked Judge Robert Ruehlman to allow Richardson to be released.
Ruehlman agreed and placed Richardson on five years of probation.
The 59-year-old Richardson previously told a TV station that she had voted multiple times for President Barack Obama on behalf of herself and family members. She had said she had no intent to commit voter fraud.
BRIBERY CONVICTION UPHELD
4-year bribery sentence upheld for Ohio man
CINCINNATI (AP) - An Ohio construction contractor serving four years in prison for bribing a federal government official has lost his bid to have his conviction thrown out or his sentenced reduced.
A three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. District Court of Appeals in Cincinnati turned down 62-year-old Samuel Mays' appeal on Tuesday.
The judges say that the Cincinnati man failed to prove that the criminal indictment against him was deficient or that the district judge gave him an overly harsh sentence.
A jury found Mays guilty of bribery, embezzlement and other charges in September 2012.
Prosecutors say that Mays and another contractor provided substantial home improvements and cash bribes worth more than $175,000 to the operations officer for the Cincinnati offices of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control in exchange for contracts.
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