Tuesday, 20 October 2015 16:16

VIDEO Scarborough: UA Expanding To National Reach

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University of Akron president Scott Scarborough says the university needs to move towards being a national university.

That's what he said Tuesday in his "State of the University Address", where LeBron James' new commercial for the university was unveiled.


LeBron will join first lady Michelle Obama for an event at UA tomorrow.

In his address, Scarborough recognized the University's local strengths - but says its reach needs to expand.

"We have to become more of a university with a national reach, an international reach, and we're at that time," Scarborough said in his address. "That's the reason why it feels uncomfortable at the moment, because we are making a transition in character from merely a regional, state university to a national university with an international reach."

Scarborough says recruiting is expanding beyond the traditional focus in the Northeast Ohio area.

He says UA should also target potential students in places like Pittsburgh and Chicago.

Scarborough once again highlighted the University of Akron's polytechnic direction, and said again that it will not short circuit things like arts and the humanities.



Tuesday, 20 October 2015 12:51

Two Shot In Akron

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Two people are recovering from gunshot wounds following a Monday night shootout on Robert Street. 

According to Akron police, an 18-year old and a 26 year old claim they stopped by for a visit when it happened.

"While they were knocking on the front door, two male suspects came from the side yard and filed multiple rounds at them," said Lt. Rick Edwards.

The 18-year old took bullets in the arms, legs and buttocks. A woman who answered the door was struck in the face. Both are being treated at an area hospital and both were listed late this morning as "stable," according to police.

The 26-year old, Recardo Travis of Victory Street was not shot but he returned fire on the original shooters.

He also got arrested on charges of carrying a concealed weapon, weapons under disability, two counts of tampering with evidence, trafficking in marijuana and discharging a firearm into a habitation.

Police searched the house and found a handgun and AK-47 assault rifle and marijuana that was packaged for sale.

It could have been worse, too. Police officers who were on another call, not far from the scene of the shooting, say some stray bullets. A house was hit by at least one bullet.

There were three children between the ages of 4 and 9 inside the house on Robert Street. They're now in the custody of Summit County Children's Services.

Tuesday, 20 October 2015 12:22

Students To Grill Candidates

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Green's mayoral candidates square off in a pre-election forum tonight but this one won't feature local journalists or any well known stakeholders asking the question. Instead, a group of high school students are taking charge.

Actually, according to Green Local Schools Communications Director Julie McMahan, the students organized the whole thing with some help from teachers Mark Tomecko and Corey Utterback. The students in an Advanced Placement Government course divided into committees to plan, publicize and execute the event.

Student Zak Belacic says it represents a stream of communication that flows in two directions.

"With us coming to the age of voting, we need to be informed and the candidates need to know our perspective on the issues," said Belacic.

McMahan says there are long term objectives as well. Green, like many other cities, wants to find ways to partner with schools and also find ways to attract and retain young professionals - a description that will apply to current high school students a few years from now.

Ryan Hallbauer, another student, says offering the perspectives of younger voters will help educate the next mayor.

"Some of the city council people have been talking about education and there doesn't really seem to be a lot that people know about policies on education, so coming from students there will probably more questions that will help everyone to understand more," said Hallbauer.

The whole thing would have fizzled if the candidates didn't see value and McMahon says that Gerard Neugebauer and Dave France jumped at the chance to be involved.

"Both of them said 'absolutely,'" said McMahan. "They saw it as a learning opportunity and I think for those two individuals as an opportunity to have a connection to that student body that they might not normally have or see on the campaign trail."

Isses of concern to younger people are brought up but perhaps not in a way that truly reflects what might be on their minds.

"Our views can be skewed because they don't directly come from us and I feel like this is a good way to tell the mayoral candidates about our perspective," said student Andrew Vue.

The forum is tonight. Tickets are required but it will be streamed live through the city's website and available later on demand.

UPDATE 5:54 PM: NewsChannel 5 IDs the man taken into custody near Edison Middle School as 48 year-old Forrest Sunkle, arrested for attempted murder charges linked to his wife.

He held police at bay for about two hours in a pickup truck he was driving, and was eventually taken into custody at about 12:45 on Monday afternoon.


(Earlier coverage) Things are back to normal in the Perry Local School district, after a lockdown caused by police activity near a school.

NewsChannel 5 reports that Massillon police were looking for a man in connection with the attempted murder of his wife.

He was seen being taken into custody near Edison Middle School.

The district has updated the situation, after some Edison students were bused to Canton Baptist Temple during the lockdown.

In a statement, district officials say the system will operate on a normal schedule the rest of the day.

Edison students will be picked up at Canton Baptist Temple, and Pfeiffer Intermediate students didn't have to be bused there in the first place.

(Perry Local Schools, website) UPDATE: At this time the situation on 13th Street has been resolved. Perry Local School will operate on a normal schedule for the remainder of the school day. Pfeiffer Intermediate students DID NOT need transportation to Canton Baptist Temple. Pfeiffer students and staff will be dismissed per the normal schedule.

Parents/Guardians of Edison students can still pick up their child at Door I on the north side of Canton Baptist Temple.

Monday, 19 October 2015 13:11

Burglar Steals Liquor, Teen Gets Shot

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Here's a burglar who might still have a massive hangover - at least if he decided to sample the stolen goods.

That's because the guy drove his car through the Shop Express Liquor Store on South Hawkins Avenue early Saturday morning.

Yes, into the store. He got out of the car and took money from the cash registers and "multiple cases of liquor," according to Akron police.

Police Lt. Rick Edwards says they were also busy Friday night investigating the non-fatal shooting of a 16 year old on Nathan Street. He's apparently going to be okay. The boy described the shooter as a black male 18 – 20 years old, 5’08”, with a scruffy beard and was wearing a dark Nike hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.

The highlight Sunday night was an armed robbery at a Subway on East Tallmadge Avenue. The suspect is a white male, 30 – 40 years old, 5’08” – 5’10”, 150 – 160 lbs., and wearing a dark blue or black heavy coat and a blue rag covering his face.

Monday, 19 October 2015 12:54

Drug Ring Busted

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Some alleged drug runners, drug dealers and others are in trouble with the feds following a bust in Canton. 18 people, mainly from Stark County, are named in a federal indictment that accuses them of traveling back and forth from Chicago to bring large amounts of heroin and crack cocaine to sell in Canton. Federal prosecutors say it's been going on for a couple of years. So far, authorities have confiscated about two dozen weapons as part of the investigation.

Press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District, Ohio:

Eighteen people were indicted for their roles in a conspiracy that brought large amounts of heroin and crack cocaine to Canton from Chicago, law enforcement officials said.

Some of the defendants illegally used firearms as part of the conspiracy. Drug addicts were sometimes used to transport the narcotics from Chicago to Ohio, and the drugs were then distributed from houses in Canton and elsewhere, according to the indictment.

Named in the 11-count indictment are: Jermaine Ramsey, 39, of Canton; Philon Ramsey, 33, of Akron; Caitlin Dixon, 22, of Canton; Eric Edwards, 24, of Canton; Deonte Lewis, 29, of Canton; Terence Harper, 42, of Alliance; Drakco Edwards, 34, of Canton; Lowrell Neal, 35, of Canton; Shaun Smith, 36, of Canton; James Clark, 36, of Alliance; Cory Abbott, 30, of Canton; Matthew Carmichael, 19, of Riverside, Illinois<x-apple-data-detectors://10/1>; Frederick Coleman, 31, of Alliance; Dominique Edwards, 26, of Canton; Clifford Edwards, 57, of Canton; Thomas Bergener, 33, of Canton; Quinton Campbell, 28, of Chicago, and Patrick Thomas, 31, of Massillon.

Philon Ramsey, Jermaine Ramsey, Caitlin Dixon, Eric Edwards, Lowrell Neal and others obtained large quantities of heroin and cocaine from a supplier in Chicago. Edwards, Philon Ramsey, Dixon and others had addicts and relatives drive them and others to Chicago to obtain the drugs, according to the indictment.

Philon Ramsey, Edwards, Neal and others used addicts as “runners” to deliver heroin and cocaine to drug customers. They also used addicts and relatives to live in “trap houses” from which they distributed heroin and cocaine. These included residences on Lawn Avenue SW, Holland Court and 16th Street<x-apple-data-detectors://16>NE, and Piedmont Street in Canton, according to the indictment.

Eric Edwards used Shaun Smith and Patrick Thomas as “enforcers” for his drug trafficking organization, according to the indictment.

Philon Ramsey, Lowrell Neal, Terence Harper, Eric Edwards and Patrick Thomas face additional charges for being felons in possession of firearms.

Jermaine Ramsey, Matthew Carmichael and Quinton Campbell face additional charges for distributing heroin within 1,000 feet of Heritage Christian School. Drakco Edwards is charged with selling heroin within 1,000 feet of Fairmount Elementary School. Cory Abbott is charged with selling heroin within 1,000 feet of Timken High School.

The conspiracy took place between February 2013 and April 2015. Twenty-three firearms were seized as part of the investigation.

“These defendants spread misery throughout Stark County,” said U.S. Attorney Steven M. Dettelbach. “They illegally used firearms and held neighborhoods captive all in the name of selling drugs for profit.”

“The FBI will continue to collaborate with our law enforcement partners to remove the gun-toting suppliers and distributors of dangerous drugs being brought to the streets,” said Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Cleveland office.

“The result of an ongoing effort and belief among all levels of law enforcement with the common purpose of assisting the community in the saving of lives in the effort against heroin,” said Canton Police Chief Bruce Lawver.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa Riley following an investigation by the Stark County Safe Streets Task Force. The task force includes members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Canton Police Department, Alliance Police Department, Jackson Township Police Department and the State of Ohio Parole Authority.

If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government's burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Monday, 19 October 2015 12:45

Warm Winter Waiting?

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We're still a couple of months away from the official start of the winter season but activity in the Pacific Ocean suggests a warmer and drier than usual winter for northeast Ohio. 

Martin Thompson with the National Weather Service in Cleveland says we can thank a strong El Nino phenomenon, which creates a warmer jet stream over the country. 

"We may at times have some snow or cold temperatures but overall, the temperatures will be above normal and the precipitation is usually drier than normal," said Thompson.

Thompson says that despite the more tolerable long term forecast, Lake Effect Snow could through a slight snag in the prediction.

"The other thing we have to figure in sometimes, especially when we're so close to Lake Erie, is some Lake Effect," said Thompson. "It doesn't take too much of a cool down to at least generate some clouds and precipitation from the lake."

The hope for most of us is that even when those clouds form and precipitation becomes a threat, is that the temperature is warm enough to keep most of that precipitation in the form of rain, rather than large amounts of snow.



Monday, 19 October 2015 12:40

Reach Higher To Reach Akron

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LeBron James and Michelle Obama have at least one interest in common - education.

That's what is bringing the first lady to Akron this week. She'll join LeBron and family members of his "Wheels for Education" and "I Promise" programs Wednesday at the University of Akron.

Eric Waldo, executive director of the first lady's "Reach Higher" initiative, says it kicks off at the White House today/Monday, then comes here.

"And we're going to follow up that launch date on Monday, with a rally with LeBron James on Wednesday, in Akron, Ohio at the University of Akron", Waldo says. "So it doesn't get much bigger than that."

First Lady Michelle Obama's office says the Akron event will highlight the importance of post-secondary education.

Saturday, 17 October 2015 08:49

Drunk Driver Avoids Checkpoint - Sort Of

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A driver in Barberton provided some justification for the need to set up sobriety checkpoints, like the one that was staged Friday night at Light Middle School in Barberton.

The Summit County OVI Task Force says the driver thought he'd outsmart the cops and avoid the checkpoint, so he sailed down 2nd Street SE but crashed into a house on Elson Avenue. 

You won't be surprised to learn he was drunk but the escapade results in some additional charges: fleeing and eluding; driving under suspension; plus child endangering, since there was a minor in the car; and police think the car was stolen, so receiving stolen property is likely.

Somebody else in the car got a ticket for marijuana possession.  Nobody got hurt in the crash - except the house, which has structural damage.

The other OVI checkpoint in Barberton was on Wooster Road North.  Two people, who turned out to be drunk, tried to go through the checkpoint without stopping.  It didn't work.  Also, no luck for the driver who decided to cut through some parking lots.

In all, six people are charged with OVI.  Some other charges are involved for some of them, such as driving under suspension, lying about their identity or outstanding warrants.

The Cavaliers have two preseason games left - and at least one won't see LeBron James in the lineup.

LeBron got an anti-inflammatory injection in his back this week.

He says that's just a normal thing as he gets ready to start the season.

"We had already known looking at the schedule, looking at the preseason schedule, that we were going to do that," James said after Friday's shootaround. "And it's all part of my maintenance program in the preseason."

He says he doesn't know which of the team's remaining two preseason games he'll miss. But head coach David Blatt says Kevin Love is expected to play on Sunday against the Toronto Raptors.

LeBron says with the team's injuries through preseason, the team's chemistry and high level of play will take time to develop.

The Cavaliers start the regular season October 27th in Chicago, where they'll open up against the Bulls.