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Area Man Charged in Wife’s Death

Aug 24, 2019 -- 10:19am


Charges have been filed against a Trumbull County man for the stabbing death of his wife. 48-year-old Francis Rydarowicz of Hubbard faces an aggravated murder charge, plus lesser counts of murder, felonious assault and domestic violence for the June 19 stabbing that killed his 41-year-old wife, Katherine. She died after being stabbed in the back at a hotel on US 422 in Mahoning County’s Coitsville Township near the Ohio-Pennsylvania border. Her husband was taken from the scene to a Youngstown hospital for treatment of cuts to his throat and wrists. Police report that the pair had a rocky relationship and were going through a divorce at the time of the murder. Rydarowicz had been released in March after doing time for a previous domestic violence incident in Austintown and was still wearing his electronic monitoring device when the stabbing occurred.


Dayton shooter's friend loses another bid to get out of jail

Aug 24, 2019 -- 8:42am

(AP) - A friend of the Dayton gunman who investigators say bought body armor and an ammunition magazine used in the shooting has lost a second attempt to get out of jail.
     A federal magistrate judge on Friday rejected a request from Ethan Kollie's attorneys to revoke his detention order.
     The decision comes just a week after the judge turned down a request for Kollie to be released on house arrest.
     Authorities say there's no evidence that Kollie knew his friend Connor Betts was planning a mass shooting Aug 4.
     He's instead charged with lying on a federal firearms form while buying a pistol that wasn't used in the attack.
     His attorneys are appealing Friday's decision. They say Kollie had no role in the Dayton shooting and no prior criminal record.

Family files wrongful death suit against ex-officer

Aug 24, 2019 -- 8:42am

(AP) - The family of a woman who authorities say was fatally shot by a Columbus vice squad officer is seeking more than $3.5 million in damages in a federal wrongful death lawsuit against the officer, the city and the police department.
     The lawsuit filed Friday in Columbus alleges the department failed to properly train and supervise vice officer Andrew Mitchell, who retired earlier this year "not in good standing."
     Mitchell has pleaded not guilty in state court to killing Donna Castleberry in 2018 after she stabbed him in the hand during an undercover prostitution investigation. He's also pleaded not guilty to federal charges of forcing women to have sex with him under threat of an arrest.

Traffic advisory

Aug 24, 2019 -- 7:05am

Traffic reminder:

SR 183 between SR 14 and US 224 in Portage County is closed through Wednesday, August 28 for culvert work. The detour is SR 14 to US 224.

OVI Checkpoint results

Aug 24, 2019 -- 6:45am

The Ohio State Highway Patrol's Canton Post conducted an OVGI checkpoint in Tuscarawas Township, in Stark County. The checkpoint was conducted on Lincolnway West and Manchester Avenue (State Route 93).

The state patrol says 376 vehicles drove through the checkpoint, 5 vehicles were diverted for further investigation, which included no driver's license, odor of an alcoholic beverage and odor of marijuana. Authorities say, not to inconvenience motorists too much, each stop lasted30 seconds or less. The checkpoint netted 1 arrest for impaired driving, OVI, and one misdemeanor traffic violation.

Akron students receive free school supplies from UW of Summit County

Aug 24, 2019 -- 6:04am

What a great gesture...Akron elementary school students will receive free school supplies from United Way of Summit County. Thanks to efforts of more than 900 volunteers who participated in the agency's Stuff the Bus Drive, EVERY student at ALL of Akron Public Schools' elementary schools will receive a full backpack full of school supplies. 10,526 students will receive free classroom materials, About 300 volunteers are expected to deliver the backpacks on September 4 to students at 28 schools.

Teen Charged after Sharing Pot Brownies

Aug 23, 2019 -- 5:48pm


A student in a southern Ohio school district is facing felony charges after a few classmates got sick from eating marijuana-laced brownies. A spokesperson for Cincinnati City Schools reports that six kids ate the tainted brownies on Thursday at Woodward Career Center – then four were sent to the hospital with symptoms including vomiting and dizziness. One was still hospitalized on Friday. The 15-year-old student accused of bringing the pot-laced brownies to school has been arrested on five counts of felonious assault.


Suspect Shot, Killed in Fight over Cop’s Stun Gun

Aug 23, 2019 -- 5:43pm


One suspect is dead and a second is still on the loose after a run-in that resulted in a police-related fatal shooting in Dayton. Police pulled-over a car for erratic driving and one of the two people in the car ran on foot, then struggled with an officer as he tried to draw his stun gun during the arrest. The officer then drew his service weapon and shot Michael Tuck of Dayton, who was taken to Miami Valley Hospital where he died. As a second officer ran to help, the other suspect fled in the car. A loaded gun and marijuana were recovered from the scene and the officers involved were placed on administrative leave.  


Serial Killer Admits Cleveland Murders

Aug 23, 2019 -- 3:31pm


Just hours after pleading guilty to murders of two women in Cincinnati and getting two more life prison terms, admitted serial killer and former Lorain County resident Samuel Little copped guilty pleas to the slayings of two more women – both killed in Cleveland. The 79-year-old killer appeared in Cuyahoga County Court via internet link on Friday afternoon, pleading guilty to a pair of aggravated murder counts for the slaying of 21-year-old Mary Jo Peyton in 1984 and the 1991 death of 32-year-old Rose Evans. The judge handed Little a sentence of 40 years to life, to be served only after the sentences imposed in Texas, California and Cincinnati…where he pleaded guilty on Friday morning in Hamilton County Court for the murder of 32-year-old Anna Stewart and another woman who has not yet been identified. In the Cleveland murders, both of his victims had been strangled. Little has been formally tied to at least 60 murder cases in at least 14 states…but says that he’s killed at least 93 women.


OVI Checkpoints TONIGHT

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:54pm


Drivers can expect to encounter OVI checkpoints in both Summit and Stark counties on Friday night.

The Summit County OVI Task Force has announced that it will set-up shop in an undisclosed location on Friday night, stopping drivers in a series of checks that will continue into the early-morning hours on Saturday. Unlike the State Highway Patrol, the Task Force does not announce the location in advance.

The State Patrol will also be running a checkpoint in Stark County in an effort to catch those who are driving impaired. Troopers will conduct stops between 8:00PM and Midnight Friday night in the 1800 block of Manchester Avenue in Tuscarawas Township.

Both OVI checkpoints will be augmented with saturation patrols in order to wrangle those who try to drive around the stops.


Funeral Arrangements Set for Former APD Chief Hall

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:53pm


Funeral arrangements have been finalized as the Akron Police Department and his family, friends and loved ones prepare to lay former Chief Gus Hall to rest.

Hall, who had spent 30 years of his life in service to the city of Akron, lost his fight to overcome a medical issue at Cleveland Clinic early last Sunday morning. Hall served as the city’s Chief of Police in a temporary agreement for one year before his retirement in November of 2010. He had been admitted to City Hospital in early August and his condition continued to decline, sending him first to the ICU before his transfer to the Cleveland facility. Calling hours are set for this Sunday from 1:00PM to 5:00PM at Newcomer Funeral Home, 131 North Canton Road in Akron. His Mass of Christian Burial happens Monday at 10:00AM at St Matthews Church, 2603 Benton Avenue in Akron. He will be laid to rest at Holy Cross Cemetery. Gus Hall was 65 years old when he passed-away last Sunday morning.


Fire Union Files Criminal Complaint against Chief

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:53pm


A criminal complaint has been filed against the city of Cleveland’s Fire Chief by the union representing firefighters on his staff. Having gotten nowhere with complaints to City Hall in a long-standing series of issues between Chief Angelo Calvillo and his staff members, a lawyer for the Association of Cleveland Firefighters filed an affidavit in Municipal Court on Friday. The filing claims that Calvillo had violated the terms of the City Charter when he became actively involved in the reelection campaign of Mayor Frank Jackson. Charter language stipulates that such activity is considered a misdemeanor crime and is therefore grounds for dismissal – along with a fine up to a Thousand dollars and up to six months in jail. The city’s Law Director had shoved-aside previous complaints by the union on the matter. The Fire Union had also filed a lawsuit against the city on Thursday in Cuyahoga County Court, asking a judge to enforce the terms of the City Charter that prohibit civil service workers from engaging in political activity.


Health Officials Issue Warning over Vaping Devices

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:52pm


The Ohio Department of Health and local officials are sounding the alarm bell over use of vaping deices. Health officials on Friday noted that at least six Ohio residents have been diagnosed with breathing illnesses – with the suspected cause in each of these cases under investigation. However, one thing that all of the patients have in common is use of e-cigarettes and vaping devices. The Director of the Ohio Department of Health says the cases indicate a harsh contradiction to claims that vaping is safe. Health officials at the Federal level are investigating more than 150 such cases in 16 states. Those cases were all reported since Wednesday this week. The Summit County Public Health Department on Friday issued an advisory, asking anyone experiencing breathing issues and using a vaping device to call the Director of Clinical Health at 330-730-0045.


Two Killed in Crash

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:50pm


Two people are dead following a two-vehicle crash on a stretch of land near Marblehead in Lake Erie. The State Highway Patrol is investigating the incident that happened in Ottawa County’s Danbury Township, where a van headed south along South Danbury North Road rolled through a stop sign, then was hit by a motorcycle headed east along East Bay Shore Road. 73-year-old motorcyclist Wayne Kelley of Elmore and his unidentified passenger were both pronounced dead at the scene. The Patrol reports that neither of the victims were wearing helmets. The follow-up investigation is ongoing.


Search Continues for Missing Man

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:50pm


(Editor’s Note: A previous article incorrectly identified the missing man. WNIR News apologizes for the mistake.)

Police in Doylestown are still seeking leads to help find a man who was reported missing last week. As we reported last Friday afternoon, family members called police last Thursday to conduct a welfare check on 63-year-old Bernard Flechler, who had not been seen since 11:00PM August 11 when he left a friend’s home. Responding officers went to Flechler’s home to find his vehicle and car keys in the garage and other personal items in the house…but Bernie Flechler was no where to be found. On Thursday, officials with Ohio Search and Rescue and their K-9 partners conducted a search of nearly 70 acres of wooded area near the missing man’s home, areas where he was last seen and several other locations in Doylestown – to no avail. Bernie Flechler is a 63-year-old white male, five-feet-seven and 155 pounds with gray-brown hair and brown eyes. Investigators need tips at Doylestown Police Department – 330-658-2771.


Area Man Dies in One-Vehicle Crash

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:49pm


An area man is dead following the crash of his pickup truck in Trumbull County’s Champion Township early Friday morning. The State Highway Patrol reports that 60-year-old Letham Swinyer of Leavittsburg was driving south along Templeton Road near US 422 around 12:45AM, when his pickup truck went off the right side of the road and hit a tree. The vehicle caught fire after impact and Swinyer died at the scene of the crash. The road was closed for about two hours after the incident and the State Patrol reports that alcohol use is suspected as a factor.


FirstEnergy Bankruptcy in Limbo

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:48pm


Akron-based FirstEnergy Solutions needs to take care of some other business before a US Bankruptcy Court takes any confirmation in its bankruptcy filing. The Beacon Journal reports that a judge this week set-aside the company plan until it comes to terms on deals with a pair of labor unions or gets approval from a court to terminate the contracts. The newspaper reports that the electric firm wants to emerge from Chapter 11 as an independent, unregulated power-generation company that will stand separate from its parent firm, FirstEnergy Corporation. The intent is to emerge from bankruptcy by the end of this year…but the company has been told to settle-up with unions representing workers at the Perry Nuclear Power Plant and at Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Station near Pittsburgh.


OH Prison Worker Busted for “Hit List”

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:48pm


A staff member at a central Ohio prison has been arrested, charged with aggravated menacing after he allegedly said that he had a list of coworkers that he planned to shoot. 21-year-old Chance Dobbs of Springfield was arrested at the Madison County Correctional Institution this week and the State Highway Patrol reports that a loaded 38-caliber handgun was found inside his vehicle along with an unloaded 22-caliber weapon. Dobbs was working as a mail room screening clerk at the lock-up when he allegedly told other workers that he had a so-called hit list of other employees that he would shoot for various reasons…even giving specific names of several corrections officers. When he was busted, Dobbs claimed that he was only joking. The warden says that Dobbs has resigned his post at the prison.


OH AG wants Dayton Gunman Records Released

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:47pm


The Ohio Attorney General’s office has come-out in support of calls by the news media to release the school records of the now-dead Dayton massacre gunman. Several national news outlets filed suit against the Bellbrook-Sugarcreek Local School District, which earlier denied access to the records on Connor Betts – who was shot to death by police just 32 seconds after he began shooting people in an entertainment district on August 4. The District is leaning on a claim that student records are traditionally protected from public view by Federal and state law…but Attorney General Dave Yost this week argued as a “friend of the court,” saying that Federal privacy protections no longer apply after the death of a student. He cited information from the US Department of Education in his filing. Betts killed a total of nine people before police put an end to it by putting several rounds into his body.


More Guilty Pleas for Admitted Serial Killer

Aug 23, 2019 -- 2:46pm


A man said to be one of the most prolific serial killers in US history has pleaded guilty to a pair of murders in southern Ohio. 79-year-old Samuel Little is already locked-up in a California prison, serving multiple life terms on convictions for other murders. On Friday, he appeared via video link in Hamilton County Court to cop the plea to the 1981 murder of 32-year-old Anna Stewart, who was last seen alive in Cincinnati before her body was eventually found in Grove City, near Columbus. He’s also admitting that he killed at least one other woman in the area who is yet to be identified. Immediately after pleading guilty, the judge sentenced Little to consecutive prison terms of 15-to-life. Prosecutors in Texas have connected Little to more than 60 murders in at least 14 states – but Little says that he’s killed at least 90 people over the course of his crimes. He was also due to be arraigned for the murders of two more women in Cleveland and was expected to plead guilty on Friday afternoon.


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