Latest Ohio news, sports, business and entertainment


School mourns 3 students among 5 dead in garage

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A northwest Ohio school is offering counseling for children and staff after three students were found dead at home, along with their uncle and grandmother, in a possible murder-suicide amid a custody dispute.

Toledo police say the five bodies were found Monday in a car in the family's garage. A truck was running with hoses leading from the exhaust into the car, and investigators say the relatives may have died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

The Sylvania schools superintendent tells The Blade newspaper the three children — ages 5, 6 and 10 — attended Whiteford Elementary School, which offered the family condolences.

Police say the children's grandmother had primarily cared for them for several years and she was upset that the youngsters' parents were trying to regain full custody.


Ohio prepares to execute killer who stabbed woman

A condemned Ohio inmate sentenced to die for stabbing a woman more than 100 times is awake and having his last visits before his scheduled execution.

The execution of Brett Hartman is scheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville.

Prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith says Hartman has been calm and cooperative since arriving Monday.

Smith says Hartman slept for about three hours early Tuesday.

He declined breakfast before starting visits with an aunt, a sister and a friend Tuesday morning.

Prison staff checked Hartman's veins twice on Monday and determined they were accessible and shouldn't pose problems during the execution.

Hartman took two doses of an anti-anxiety drug Monday, which is offered to inmates under Department of Rehabilitation and Correction policy.


Woman who drove on sidewalk holds 'idiot' sign

CLEVELAND (AP) — A woman caught on camera driving on a sidewalk to avoid a Cleveland school bus that was unloading children is standing in the cold at an intersection holding a sign warning people about idiots.

A Cleveland Municipal Court judge ordered 32-year-old Shena Hardin to serve the highly public sentence for one hour Tuesday and Wednesday. She arrived bundled up against the 34-degree cold, puffing a cigarette, wearing head phones and avoiding comment as passing vehicles honked.

Satellite TV trucks are on hand to stream the event live near downtown Cleveland.

The sign reads: "Only an idiot would drive on the sidewalk to avoid a school bus."

Hardin's license was suspended for 30 days and she was ordered to pay $250 in court costs.


Overturned truck spills white ink on SW Ohio road

(Information in the following story is from: Dayton Daily News, )

VANDALIA, Ohio (AP) — Workers have been cleaning up white ink that spilled onto a highway when a tractor-trailer overturned, interrupting road traffic for hours near the Dayton International Airport.

The Dayton Daily News reports the 28-year-old driver exited the cab unhurt after the crash Monday on Interstate 70.

The Environmental Protection Agency has been cleaning the affected part of the roadway and remained on scene Tuesday morning. The local fire department says the ink is used for printing and isn't hazardous.

The State Highway Patrol says the weight of the ink shifted during travel, and the driver was cited for having an unsecured load.


3 GOP incumbents in Ohio House face uncertain fate

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Republicans in the Ohio House are still waiting to see if three GOP incumbents keep their seats.

Victories for Reps. Mike Dovilla of Berea, Al Landis of Dover, and Craig Newbold of Columbiana would only strengthen the 58-38 majority the GOP held after Election Day.

But losses could mean added negotiating power for Democrats in the next two-year legislative session.

All that will be determined by a count of provisional and absentee ballots that begins on Nov. 17.

According to unofficial results, Dovilla leads Democrat Matt Patten by 305 votes; Landis leads Democrat Joshua O'Farrell by 260 votes; and Newbold trails Democrat Nick Barborak (BAHR'-bohr-ak) by 383 votes.

If a spread is less than a quarter of a percent, there will be an automatic recount, taking the process into December.


Cleveland considers safety shields for bus drivers

(Information in the following story is from: The Plain Dealer, )

CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland's public transit agency and a union representing its workers are studying ways to better protect bus drivers after several recent assaults.

The local union president tells The Plain Dealer newspaper the union wants shields installed around drivers on buses.

A spokeswoman for the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority says it would cost more than $1 million to get the 450 buses the type of plastic shields used in cities such as New York and Boston. RTA wants to test different types of shields.

The move comes after several confrontations in the past few months. RTA fired one driver who punched a female passenger during an altercation captured on video. Another passenger punched a driver, and a third threw hot coffee in a driver's face.


Ohio casino's developer gives nearby suburb $200K

ROSSFORD, Ohio (AP) — The operator of Toledo's new casino has given a neighboring city $200,000 to address the potentially increased burden on its fire and police departments as the casino draws more people to the area.

Penn National Gaming Inc. says the grant presented Monday to the city of Rossford helps with personnel costs for safety services.

Emergency responders from Toledo have primary responsibility for the Hollywood Casino Toledo. But officials from the company say they recognize many customers travel through Rossford and the grant fulfills the developer's commitment to help the city deal with that increase in visitors.

The $320 million facility opened in May as the second of Ohio's four voter-approved casinos.

Others have opened in Cleveland and Columbus. The last, in Cincinnati, is expected to open next year.


911 call: Malnourished Ohio boy 'stiff as a board'

VERMILION, Ohio (AP) — A mother's call to 911 about her 18-month-old disabled son sent an ambulance crew to a northern Ohio home where they found the undersized toddler dead and six other children, most malnourished.

Authorities released the call on Monday.

No charges were immediately filed in the case. The six children were removed from the home. Most were physically or mentally disabled. Four were sent to the hospital and remain hospitalized.

The mother told 911 that the toddler was "stiff as a board" when she and her husband woke up Nov. 6 in Vermilion.

While on the 911 call, the mother asked family members, "When's the last time somebody went in there to check?"

An autopsy attributed the boy's death to malnourishment and dehydration.

Neighbors say they've seen little of the family.


Preliminary hearing to end for US soldier

JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. (AP) — Attorneys will wrap up a preliminary hearing against Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, who is accused of massacring 16 Afghan villagers during a predawn rampage earlier this year.

Closing arguments from Army prosecutors and Bales' attorneys will be made Tuesday. In the coming weeks, the investigating officer, Col. Lee Deneke, (deh-neh-KEE) will decide whether to recommend court-martial, with the ultimate decision to be made by Bales' brigade command. Bales, a 39-year-old father of two from Lake Tapps, Wash., could face the death penalty.

If a court-martial takes place, it will be held at the Washington state base south of Seattle.

The preliminary hearing, known as an Article 32, included testimony from fellow soldiers who say Bales returned to the base after the March killings covered in blood, as well as Afghan witnesses, including children, who testified via video from Afghanistan.


Justice Dept., DEP sue over W. Pa. Superfund site

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The U.S. Department of Justice and the state Department of Environmental Protection have sued 17 companies in an attempt to recover some of the costs of cleaning up a Superfund site about 50 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

According to the complaint filed Friday, the site was run by Reactive Metals and Alloys Corp., or Remacor, which processed magnesium shavings and scrap until a 2005 fire destroyed facilities there.

Beginning in 2006, the DEP and the U.S. EPA removed six million pounds of the waste from the 45 acre site at a cost of about $10 million. The companies named in the lawsuit provided magnesium to Remacor.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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Republican Rick Perry is Governor of Texas. Two Republicans represent Texas in the U.S. Senate, and Texas has 32 representatives in the U.S. House: 20 Republicans and 12 Democrats.
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