Friday, 20 January 2017 11:33

Bevan Walsh Sworn In For Fifth Term

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Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh was sworn into office Thursday; making history as the first Summit County Prosecutor in the past 60 years to be elected to five consecutive terms. 

2017 marks Prosecutor Walsh's 17th year as Summit County Prosecutor, passing former County Prosecutor Lynn Slaby, who served from 1980 through 1995. Former Summit County Prosecutor Alva Russell still holds the title of longest-serving prosecutor in Summit County history, holding the office from 1936 to 1956. 

In a statement released Friday, Walsh said, "I want to thank Summit County voters for having the faith in me as their county prosecutor. It has been an honor to serve them." 

 

It's official -- the Ohio state high school football championships are coming back to the birthplace of football. The board of directors of the Ohio High School Athletic Association approved taking the games back to Canton at the remodeled Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium for 2017 and 2018.

The intention is to return the games to Ohio Stadium in Columbus in 2018, but the board hasn't voted on that issue. This year's championship games will be played the week after Thanksgiving.

 

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(OHSAA) The Ohio High School Athletic Association football state championship games will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton in 2017 and 2018 following approval from the OHSAA Board of Directors at its January meeting Thursday. The OHSAA staff had previously confirmed its intent to return to Canton in 2017 and 2018 and the 9-0 vote by the board of directors Thursday makes the move official.

After a 24-year stay in Stark County from 1990-2013, the football state championship games were held at Ohio Stadium in Columbus in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

“We had great hosts in Stark County before, and I know we will again,” said Dr. Dan Ross, OHSAA Commissioner. “We are blessed in Ohio to have so many outstanding playoff venues like Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton and Ohio Stadium here in Columbus, and our intent all along has been to rotate the finals between the two sites. The last three years in Columbus have been great, and the timing worked out well because Canton and the Pro Football Hall of Fame had major stadium renovations underway at the same time.”

The 2017 OHSAA football state championships weekend is Thursday, Nov. 30, through Sunday, Dec. 3. The exact dates and times of the games will be finalized this spring. All seven state championship games will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton.

“Visit Canton is excited to see the tradition of the OHSAA High School Football Championships return to Stark County, and we are so eager to showcase the world-class Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium,” said Allyson Bussey, President of Visit Canton. “Our team at the Convention & Visitors’ Bureau is working hand-in-hand with OHSAA and the Pro Football Hall of Fame to plan an experience of excellence for the athletes, coaches, parents, students and everyone involved in this prestigious event.

”The stadium complex, which is next to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, will include Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village, featuring hotels, shopping, a conference center and parking decks. The world-class stadium and entertainment complex, adjacent to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, is one of nine major components of Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village, a $600 million development project under way to transform the Hall of Fame’s campus.

“We look forward to the OHSAA High School Championships returning to Canton,” shared David Baker, President & CEO of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. “Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village that includes the spectacular, state-of-the-art Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium will provide a rich experience for the many players, coaches, families, and fans attending the games. The excellence in competition among the best football players in the state will be celebrated by the Hall of Fame and our community.”

No details for the football state championship games after 2018 have been finalized, but the OHSAA intends to return to Ohio Stadium in Columbus for the 2019 state championship games.

Friday, 20 January 2017 06:07

Top Wanted Terry Picked Up

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Finess Terry didn't go far on the lam from charges he pulled the trigger in a March 2016 street gunfight that sent a bullet into a house and injured a man sitting in his home. Terry was picked up on Triplett Avenue after spending time on the Most Wanted list for the U.S. Marshal's Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force.

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(NOVFTF) The Fugitive of the Week, Finess Terry, was arrested this afternoon by members of the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force. Terry has been wanted since March of 2016 for felonious assault and discharging a firearm into an occupied structure in the Akron area. Members of the task force arrested Terry in the 1300 block of Triplett Blvd in Akron.Terry’s arrest was a direct result of information provided through the tip line. As always, thank you for your partnership with the U.S. Marshals Service and the Fugitive of the Week program.

Thursday, 19 January 2017 11:25

Wayne Co. Sheriff Looking For Victim's Truck

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Wayne County Sheriff's Deputies are looking for murder victim Jeremy Lesh's truck.

Lesh's body was found in a wooded area behind a church and school playground in Chippewa Township. A woman walking her dog notice his body concealed under a fallen tree.

Lesh, 40, had been missing since Christmas Day. An autopsy revealed he was badly beaten and stabbed to death. The county coroner called it a "brutal attack."

The vehicle in question is an early model white Chevy S-10 pick-up truck with Ohio plates GUD-7192. Anyone with infor asked to call Wayne County Sheriff. 

Thursday, 19 January 2017 08:52

More Heroin Hijinks At Green Super 8

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Summit Deputies arrested three people out of a Green motel fight that had it all -- sex, drugs and duking it out. Two of those arrrested a pimp and prostitute; she'd called her dad for help after a fight, then the two men got into a fight. Cops say they also found heroin.

The fight is just the latest episode at the same hotel where 16-year old Andrew Frye died last year of a heroin overdose from a supply provided by family members, including his grandmother and mother.

Arrested where 23-year old Brandon Roberts, who was injured in the fight in the lobby of the Super 8 Motel on Corporate Woods Parkway. Roberts is charged with promoting prostitution and possession of heroin. He's been booked into the Summit County Jail after being treated for injuries after a fight with 45-year old David Jones of Akron, who'd been called to the motel by his daughter, 20-year old Katie Jones.

The elder Jones was charged with felonious assault while she was charged with heroin possession. They were also booked into the Summit County Jail.

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(Summit Sheriff) On January 16, 2017, the Summit County Sheriff’s Office responded to a motel in the city of Green in response to a fight that was occurring in the lobby. When the deputies arrived, a 23 year old man, identified as Brandon P. Roberts, had been injured in the altercation. Roberts was transported to Akron City Hospital by the Green Fire Department. The Summit County Sheriff’s Detective Bureau responded to investigate the incident.

Detectives found that prior to the fight, patrons of the motel, Brandon Roberts and Katie Jones, had been involved in a verbal altercation. Jones contacted her father, David Jones to come pick her up from the motel. When her father arrived, David Jones and Brandon Roberts got into a physical altercation. The investigation further revealed that Katie Jones and had been engaging in prostitution at the motel with the assistance of Brandon Roberts. They were also found to be in possession of heroin.

On January 16, 2017, David J. Jones, age 45 of Akron was arrested and charged with Felonious Assault (F-2) and Katie M. Jones, age 20 of Akron was arrested and charged with Possession of Drugs – Heroin (F-5). They were booked into the Summit County Jail.

On January 19, 2017, Brandon P. Roberts, age 23 of Akron was arrested and charged with Promoting Prostitution (F-3) and Possession of Drugs – Heroin (F-5). He was booked into the Summit County Jail.

Thursday, 19 January 2017 08:42

Tallmadge Fatal Fire Blamed On Cooking

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Akron's Fire Department releasing results of it's investigation into the fatal Tallmadge Avenue fire that killed four members of a family and left two survivors.

"Unattended cooking" on the gas stove is the ruling; even though the stove itself was burned, at least one the burners was in the "on" position and the blaze originated in the kitchen. Despite no evidence of working fire detectors in the home, the Fire Department says it was unable to determine conclusively whether detectors were in the home.

Parents Omar Riley and Shirley Wallis died in the blaze, along with their daughters nine year old Aniyla and eight-year old Shanice Riley. A 12-year old daughter, Shaniya Wallis, was burned in the blaze. Family friend Jennifer Grubbs was able to escape from an attic bedroom by crawling out a window.

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(AFD Release) – The investigation by the Akron Fire Department (AFD) into the December 3, 2016, fatal fire at 266 East Tallmadge Avenue has been completed. In the course of the investigation, AFD companies forced entry to all doors of the structure with exception of the east door.

The structure was examined using a systematic approach starting with the areas least damaged to most damaged. Inspection of the interior revealed heavy damage to the first floor kitchen area at and near the gas stove. The knobs of the stove were completely burned off, and evidence shows one burner was in the “on” position. Materials on the first floor show evidence of reaching their ignition temperatures.

Evidence shows the fire traveled upwards in a chimney effect reaching the second floor. The occupant of the attic stated that after smelling smoke, she went to the second floor landing and opened the attic door. Being immediately overcome with smoke, she ran upstairs to get away from it and was able to escape from a third floor window.

While firefighters did not see any smoke detectors, fire investigators were unable to conclusively determine whether or not they were present. After processing the fire scene and interviewing witnesses, the Akron Fire Investigator determined that the origin of this fire was in the first floor kitchen area at or near the gas stove. The cause of this fire was determined to be unattended cooking. 

Wednesday, 18 January 2017 12:08

Ohio Flu Cases Jump To Start 2017

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The Ohio Department of Health has released some flu numbers from the first week of 2017, and they're encouraging residents to get vaccinated. 

A sharp increase of 130 cases of the flu occurred between the last week of December and the first week of January, according to the report. ODH spokeswoman Melanie Amato tells WAKR.net, "We found that flue had increased across the state of Ohio and become widespread. And what that means is that we are finding hospitalizations for the flu in every part of the state." While it is a big increase, these numbers are pretty typical for this time of year in Ohio. She said a lot of people stay indoors and furthermore a lot of families are getting together, passing around germs while couped up out of the cold. 

Amato reminds Ohio residents that since the flu season typically runs through the middle of March, there is still time to get vaccinated. She says vaccinations among Ohioans is down, but supplies of vaccinations are still abundant. 

Read the full press release from the Ohio Department of Health below: 

Influenza-like illness is now widespread throughout Ohio for the first time this flu season, and the number of associated hospitalizations are rising. The first week of January, there were 287 new confirmed flu-associated hospitalizations in Ohio compared to 157 the week before. There have been 654 total flu-associated hospitalizations since flu season began last October. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu activity is on the rise across the country and this trend is expected to continue for at least several more weeks.

Flu season in Ohio generally lasts from October to May, with flu-associated hospitalizations typically peaking between December and February. The 2015-16 flu season a year ago started a bit later and flu-associated hospitalizations did not peak until early March. There were 3,691 total flu-associated hospitalizations during last year’s flu season.

“Influenza vaccination is the safest and most effective way to prevent the flu, except for infants younger than 6-month old who aren’t eligible to receive it,” said Sietske de Fijter, chief of the Bureau of Infectious Diseases and state epidemiologist for the Ohio Department of Health (ODH). Vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctors' visits and missed work and school.”

While vaccination provides the greatest protection against the flu, other effective ways to avoid getting or spreading it include: washing hands frequently or using alcohol-based hand sanitizer; covering coughs and sneezes with tissues, or coughing or sneezing into elbows; avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth; and staying home when sick and until fever-free for 24 hours without using fever-reducing medication.

Symptoms of influenza can include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Flu vaccination is available at most healthcare providers’ offices, local health departments and retail pharmacies.

“There are no flu vaccine shortages across Ohio,” de Fijter said. “The short time it will take to get a flu vaccine is much less than the time it will take you to recover from the flu.”

CDC recommends that clinicians administer one of two prescription antiviral drugs as a second line of defense as soon as possible to patients with confirmed or suspected influenza who are hospitalized, have severe illness, or may be at higher risk for flu complications. Patients who could benefit from them include children younger than 2 years old; adults 65 and older; people with chronic medical conditions including asthma, heart disease, or weakened immune systems; pregnant women; American Indians/Alaska Natives; and people who are morbidly obese.

“These antiviral medications can reduce the severity of the flu and prevent serious flu complications,” de Fijter said. “They work best when started within two days of getting sick.”

Adult flu-associated deaths are not reportable to ODH so these statistics are not available. Flu-associated pediatric deaths are reportable, but there have been no such deaths reported in Ohio so far this flu season.

More information about influenza and flu activity in Ohio is available at www.flu.ohio.gov.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017 11:28

Life In Prison For Cuyahoga Falls Murderer

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Jeffrey Conrad of Toledo has been sentenced to life in prison for the stabbing death of his ex-girlfriend, Amanda Russell.

Russell's body was found in the backyard of her Cuyahoga Falls home back in August of 2014 by her then 14-year-old daughter. Russell, who had a protection order against him, was arrested and charged with murder. A jury found him guilty of Aggravated Murder, Felonious Assault, Violating a Protection Order, and Domestic Violence. 

In addition to the life sentence, Summit County Common Pleas Court Paul Gallagher tacked on 11 years for the assault of a fellow inmate. Conrad, remorseless in court Wednesday, wore a smile as he maintained his innocence in the murder of Russell whose body was found in her backyard. Conrad was convicted by a jury back in 2015. 

Jeffrey Conrad

Conrad made the news during the murder trial when he chose to represent himself and then, threatened to shoot other people in the courtroom. Later he decided that he didn't want to be in the courtroom any longer and removed himself, leaving no one to represent him and the defense of his case. He was in court for sentencing, and according to the Summit County Prosecutor's Office, showed no remorse and claimed his innocence while smiling with the family of Amanda Russell present. 

Tuesday, 17 January 2017 12:13

Tallmadge Chemical Attack Rapist Sentenced

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Brendan Clark, 37, of Tallmadge has been sentenced to 9 years in prison after pleading guilty to rape and domestic violence against a woman he knew back in July of last year.

Court documents show Clark entered the victim's home, threw an unspecified chemical in her face, and then attacked and assaulted her. The victim was later able to escape and alert a neighbor. 

Clark was sentenced immediately after his guilty plea in Summit County Court. After he serves his sentence, Clark willl have to register as a sex offender with the County every 90 days for the rest of his life. 

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Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh announced today that Brendan Clark, 37, of Van Evers Road in Tallmadge, pled guilty in connection with an attack on a female acquaintance.

Summit County Common Pleas Court Judge Paul Gallagher immediately sentenced Clark to nine years in prison.

Clark pled guilty to the following charges:

  • Rape – a felony of the 1st degree
  • Domestic Violence – a misdemeanor of the 1st degree

In July of 2016, Clark entered the victim’s home, threw a chemical in her face, dragged her into a bedroom where he beat her and sexually assaulted her. The victim was able to escape and ran outside where she alerted neighbors. The Tallmadge Police Department conducted an investigation and obtained DNA evidence and an admission from Clark.

Judge Gallagher also designated Clark as a Tier III sex offender. When Clark is released from prison, he will have to register with the local sheriff every 90 days for the rest of his life.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017 08:08

Pair In Court For Barberton Murder

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Barberton police are putting a man and woman behind bars for a weekend shooting that left a Cleveland man dead at the scene. Justin Randle was found in the grass and died a short time later; witnesses fingered the shooters taking off in an SUV outside a home on Michigan Place; police stopped the vehicle, found a gun and shell casings in the vehicle.25-year old Akria Taylor and 26-year old Antonio Parra, both of the Cleveland area, arrested. Parra's facing murder, Taylor obstruction charges.

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(Barberton PD) On January 15, 2017 at 1:51 a.m., Barberton Police were called to 341 Michigan Place for a person who had been shot. Arriving officers found the victim lying in the grass. The victim was identified as Justin R. Randle, DOB 5/31/1989 from East 74th Street, Cleveland, Ohio. Randle had been shot and witnesses stated that the suspect had left the scene in a Saturn SUV. Randle was transported to Summa Akron City Hospital where he was operated on. Randle died from his injuries early Sunday morning.

Shortly after the shooting call went out, Barberton Officers spotted a Saturn SUV that matched the suspect vhicle heading out of the City on Wooster Road North. Officers conducted a traffic stop. A loaded gun and two fired shell cashings were recovered from the vehicle.

The driver of the vehicle was Akiria Taylor, DOB 2/21/1991 from Griffing Avenue in Cleveland. The passenger of the vehicle was Antonio Deon Parra, DOB 2/20/1990 from Walford Road in Warrensville Heights. Both Taylor and Parra were arrested and booked into the Barberton City Jail.

Parra is charged with Murder and Taylor is charged of Obstructing Justice. Both will have their initial appearance in Barberton Municipal Court on Tuesday, January 17, 2017.