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Local News: A service of Reid Health

WAYNE COUNTY LABOR POOL DROPS BY 350 PEOPLE IN LAST MONTH

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County has had another 350 people drop from its workforce as the county continues on a track to drop below 30,000 in the labor pool.  Wayne County now has just 30,245 people either working or seeking jobs.  Also, 490 people have been added to the list of unemployed Wayne County residents in just the last month, and that has caused the county’s unemployment rate to jump half a percentage point to 3.8%.  All other Indiana counties in our area saw a similar increase.

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EATON GAS STATION ROBBED AT GUNPOINT

(Eaton, OH)--An armed robber struck a Preble County gas station late Wednesday night.  According to scanner traffic, a robber entered a gas station on U.S. 35 on Eaton’s western edge at just before midnight and tied up a clerk at gunpoint.  The suspect then fled.  Police canines were brought to the area, but there was no immediate word of any arrest.  Police have also not yet said whether or not the clerk or anyone else was hurt.

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WEST NILE VIRUS APPEARS IN WHITEWATER VALLEY

(Franklin County, IN)--The West Nile Virus has shown up in the Whitewater Valley.  A mosquito sample taken earlier this month in Franklin County has tested positive for West Nile.  So far this summer, there have been only two human cases of West Nile in Indiana and neither of them was in our area.  Most experts say that the odds of getting bitten by an infected mosquito are extremely long.  And, even if you do, a serious medical reaction would be rare.

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COUNCIL ADVANCES OLD REID LOANS

(Richmond, IN)--After changing some language in the ordinances that would allow the city of Richmond to enter into two loans to take down the old Reid Hospital building, Common Council advanced the ordinances to a third reading in two weeks.  Before the vote Monday night, Richmond Police Chief Jim Branum discussed some of the issues at old Reid.  "So far, the police department has responded to (old) Reid Hospital 58 times since January 1."  Fire Chief Jerry Purcell talked about the dangers.  "Believe me, there is tragedy after tragedy awaiting us there," Purcell said.  That includes all of this.  "We have flooded basements.  We have a 20-foot deep mechanical pit to the north of the building that's at ground level.  We have open elevator shaft doors leading to those flooded basements," Purcell added.  Council Monday night capped the rate of one loan at two and a half percent.

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RPD MARKS TWO-YEAR POINT SINCE UNSOLVED HOMICIDE OCCURRED

(Richmond, IN)--Saturday marks the two-year point since 18-year-old Caleb Stevens was shot and killed inside his home in the 1600 block of South 13th Street in Richmond.  The Richmond Police Department issued a statement Thursday saying that they’re still actively involving the unsolved homicide.  There were not a lot of leads, but police did find drugs inside the home.  This was Mike Britt with RPD two years ago.  "I don't know if we can call it a drug house or not.  However, after we obtained our search warrant and entered the crime scene and began our search, there were some illegal substances discovered," Britt said.  The reward for information leading to an arrest has now exceeded $26,000.

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WAYNE COUNTY CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT CASES DROP IN JULY

(Wayne County, IN)--There has been a drop in the last month in Wayne County in the number of substantiated cases of child abuse and neglect.  The number of cases for July, according to new numbers from the Department of Children’s Services, was 37.  That’s down from 51 new, substantiated cases in June.  Wayne County is still averaging more than one new case of child abuse or neglect every day.  Officials say drugs are a factor in the vast majority of those cases.

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RPD RESUMES COFFEE WITH A COP PROGRAM

(Richmond, IN)--The Richmond Police Department will resume its Coffee with a Cop program next week.  It will take place beginning Monday morning at 7:30 at the McDonald’s on East Main Street.  Coffee with a Cop is a program that was designed last year and was designed as a way for community members to connect with police officers on an informal basis.  RPD representatives say more than 2000 people have taken part since the program’s inception.

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CITY ASKS COUNTY FOR $2 MILLION FOR OLD REID CLEANUP

(Richmond, IN)--The city of Richmond has asked Wayne County to kick in $2 million for the cleanup of the old Reid Hospital property.  Mayor Dave Snow made the request Wednesday night at a joint meeting of Wayne County Council and Commissioners.  Snow told county leaders that city/county partnerships are critical.  County leaders said they needed time to take the $2 million request under consideration.  The city has an October 1 deadline to proceed with two loans.  Richmond’s Common Council will discuss those loans again on Monday night.

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DRUG OVERDOSE CALL LEADS TO DRUG ARREST

(Richmond, IN)--What started as a drug overdose call led to a substantial drug arrest on Wednesday.  First responders were sent to the home of 24-year-old Shawn Farrow in the 100 block of Richmond Avenue.  Farrow was in the Wayne County Jail Thursday morning facing a slew of charges that include dealing methamphetamine and a substance represented to be a controlled substance and possession of a syringe and smoking instrument.  23-year-old Jeffrey Henson was also arrested.  There was no word on the outcome of the overdose victim.

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MAN CONNECTED TO 26-POUND PREBLE COUNTY METH BUST ARRAIGNED

(Eaton, OH)--A man who police say is connected to the discovery of 26 pounds of crystal meth on I-70 in Preble County was arraigned Wednesday.  39-year-old Waiman Yu is suspected of being part of a large drug trafficking organization for 20 years.  Federal agents put a GPS tracking device on Yu’s car, which was stopped in on I-70 in Preble County.  The drugs had a street value of $400,000.  Yu has already done six years in prison for conspiracy to commit murder.

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RPD FEARS McDONALD'S DEMOLITION WILL PROMPT PROSTITUTION SHIFT

(Richmond, IN)--An interesting letter has been sent from the Richmond Police Department to owners of businesses just east of the Uptown area.  The letter says that there has been an increase in prostitution complaints inside McDonald’s at 18th and East Main.  There have also been complaints outside the building.  That McDonald’s is set to close at the end of the month for a three-month demolition and reconstruction project.  RPD is concerned prostitutes may set up shop in or near a different business.  Nearby business owners have been invited by RPD to a meeting on August 30 to address the situation.

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OFFICERS IN POLICE-INVOLVED SHOOTING IDENTIFIED

(Connersville, IN)--The officers in a police-involved shooting in Connersville have been identified.  CPD officer Josh Durnstine and Fayette County Deputy Kyle Murry are today on administrative leave that’s part of routine procedure.  Either Durnstine or  Murry or both fired at Jason Combs last weekend when Combs came around a corner carrying a shotgun during a fight call on Indiana Avenue.  Combs was not hit.  He has been charged with criminal recklessness.

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WOMAN ARRESTED ON DRUG WARRANT

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond woman was picked up at a fast-food restaurant just east of Uptown.  45-year-old Marti Adams is now in the Wayne County Jail, where she charged with possessing methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, and maintaining a common nuisance.  Adams was working at the Wendy’s on East Main at lunchtime Tuesday when she was taken into custody.

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ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT ACCUSED OF RAPING 14-YEAR-OLD GIRL PLEADS GUILTY

(Richmond, IN)--An illegal immigrant who was living in Richmond and was also accused of raping a 14-year-old girl pled guilty Monday to a reduced charge as part of a plea deal.  25-year-old Jose Diaz admitted to the incident, which occurred a year ago and was reported by the victim to an adult at Richmond High School.  Diaz will be sentenced to five and a half years as part of the plea agreement.  He will also have to register as a sex offender.

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REID TO HOST FIRST-EVER JOB FAIR

(Richmond, IN)--Reid Health averages between 130 and 160 job openings per month.  A job fair has been set for Wednesday to highlight many of those openings.  The first-ever Reid Health Career Fair will take place from 3 until 6 Wednesday afternoon at Lingle Hall.  All departments – both clinical and non-clinical – will be represented.

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FOUR ARRESTED DURING SOUTH 6th DRUG BUST

(Richmond, IN)--Four people were in jail Tuesday morning after being arrested at a Richmond drug house Monday.  31-year-old Justin Agnew is a resident of a home in the 300 block of South 6th.  Agnew is charged with dealing, possession, and maintaining a common nuisance.  Also arrested were 36-year-old Amy Gadd, 33-year-old Don Hittle, and 24-year-old Dustin Reffitt.  All face various charges of possession and visiting a common nuisance.

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SENATOR TODD YOUNG HEADED TO RICHMOND TO DISCUSS OPIOID CRISIS

(Richmond, IN)--The fact there were at least four drug overdoses in Richmond from Monday afternoon to Tuesday morning is indicative of the problem that’s bringing Senator Todd Young to Richmond on Wednesday.  Community leaders, elected officials, and addiction treatment representatives will meet at Reid Health Wednesday afternoon to further discuss problems created by opioid addiction.  Unlike another recent forum at Reid Health, Wednesday’s gathering is not open to the public.

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PART OF STATE ROUTE 121 DEDICATED TO FALLEN SOLDIER

(New Madison, OH)--A stretch of State Route 121 in the New Madison area was dedicated Monday to honor a soldier who died during Operation Desert Storm.  Master Sergeant William McDaniel II was killed 15 years ago when the helicopter he was in crashed in the Philippines.  McDaniel was a Darke County native and lifelong resident.  Family members and military representatives were on hand Monday.  The part of 121 honoring McDaniel runs from New Madison to Fort Jefferson.

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STATE POLICE TO INVESTIGATE OFFICER-INVOLVED SHOOTING

(Connersville, IN)--The Indiana State Police is investigating an officer-involved shooting that occurred in Connersville over the weekend.  Police were called late Saturday night to a home on Indiana Avenue where a fight was in progress.  As officers went to the front door, a man later identified as 29-year-old Jason Combs walked around the corner of the house with a 12 gauge shotgun.  Officers fired but missed.  Combs ran inside and later surrendered without incident.

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TEEN FOUND AFTER BEING MISSING FOR MORE THAN A DAY

(Metamora, IN)--A search for a missing Franklin County teen had a happy ending this weekend.  14-year-old Emily Pennington, who is described as being in the autism spectrum, was dropped off at her Metamora home on Thursday afternoon by a school bus but was not seen after that.  Dozens of volunteers and at least six law enforcement agencies searched wooded areas and eventually found Emily on Saturday morning sitting on the bank of the Whitewater River.  She was taken to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital to be checked out.

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SUGAR CREEK CASE AGAINST SEWER DISTRICT MOVING FORWARD

The ongoing fight between Sugar Creek Packing Company and the Western Wayne Regional Sewer District is moving forward. The sewer district has one week to submit its own testimony to state regulators on Sugar Creek’s complaint of poor service.  Sugar Creek has been pushing a plan to send its wastewater to Connersville, an idea the sewer district opposes.  Western Wayne has long argued that it is not a public utility and not subject to oversight by the state.

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EARLHAM COLLEGE PROFESSOR AWARDED 1.1 MILLION DOLLAR GRANT

A chemistry instructor at Earlham College is getting a federal grant to develop a curriculum that could eventually be used across the country.  The National Science Foundation awarded the one-point-one million dollar grant to Lori Watson.  She is an associate professor of chemistry at Earlham.  The grant will help her and other collaborators develop syllabi for inorganic science courses that can be used at any college.

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WINCHESTER CONSIDERS RECYCLING PROGRAM

Winchester is considering a recycling program.  Last month, the city was approved for a 66-thousand dollar grant from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to set up the program by early next year.  The Mayor of Winchester says the program will cost the city 175-thousand dollars to launch, but only about one-quarter of that amount to maintain annually.

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WAYNE COUNTY CONSIDERS MAGISTRATE FOR ZONING ISSUES

(Hagerstown, IN)--Wayne County leaders are discussing creating a magistrate that would oversee what would essentially be an ordinance violation court.  The issue came to the forefront this week at a Hagerstown Town Council meeting.  Hagerstown is about to adopt a new zoning ordinance that sets lower limits on the number of farm animals allowed in areas with residential concentrations.

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TWO WOMEN ARREST LAST MONTH FOR DRUGS ARRESTED AGAIN

(Richmond, IN)--Multiple types of drugs were recovered when a Richmond woman was pulled over in the 200 block of South 9th late Wednesday night.  36-year-old Melissa Leonard was allegedly driving under the influence and in possession of heroin, meth, needles, and other drug paraphernalia.  Leonard had just been jailed last month on very similar charges.  Another Richmond woman was also arrested Wednesday night on various drug charges.  23-year-old Taylor Glander had a warrant for possessing meth and needles.  She was jailed less than three weeks ago on similar charges.

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RADFORD'S OPENS EAST-SIDE STORE

(Richmond, IN)--A west-side Richmond staple opens on the east side Thursday.  Radford’s Meat Market and Deli is opening Thursday in the building just east of Walmart that was originally home to Skyline Chili.  Owner Jen Ferriell talks about what prompted them to open a second store.  "It was mainly just customer driven.  We heard on a daily or weekly basis from people who didn't want to drive all the way across town, but they wanted to shop with us more often."  The west-side Radford’s will remain open.  "No changes.  We're still business as usual over there," Ferriell said.  The east-side location features limited seating.

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REDEVELOPMENT COMMISSION APPROVES OLD REID LOAN FUNDING

(Richmond, IN)--The demolition and cleanup of the old Reid property went before the Richmond Redevelopment Commission Tuesday.  As expected, that commission agreed to be the repayment source for a 20-year, five-and-a-quarter-million-dollar loan.  The repayment will come from Tax Increment Financing funds.  The loan plan still needs the approval of Richmond Common Council.  County involvement in old Reid’s cleanup will be discussed in a joint meeting of the county council and commissioners on August 16.

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RICHMOND MAN BLOWS .435 AFTER SCOOTER CRASH

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man was jailed Tuesday night after crashing his scooter and being found with an incredible blood-alcohol content.  47-year-old Nicky Davidson crashed on Round Barn Road and was taken to Reid Health twice…not because of injuries, but because of a blood-alcohol content of .435.  That’s too high to be booked into the Wayne County Jail.  After the level dropped, Davidson was jailed.  The AMA says that a blood-alcohol content of .45 is fatal for most people.

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CAMDEN LEVIES PASS

(Camden, OH)--Voting took place in one Preble County community Tuesday.  Camden residents went to the polls to vote on two issues.  One was the coverage of operating expenses.  The other was a six-mil police levy.  Both issues passed, although the operating expenses levy made it by just nine votes.  The passage of the two issues will not increase taxes for Camden residents.

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CONSTRUCTION TIE UPS NEAR GRAVEL PIT ROAD

(RICHMOND)- A heads up about some traffic work that could impact your drive this week.  Crews will install beams for a new I-70 westbound bridge deck near Gravel Pit Road. That means traffic on New Paris Pike will be stopped periodically during daylight hours tomorrow through Friday while the beams are lifted into place.

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RPD K-9 GETTING BODY ARMOR

(RICHMOND)-  A Richmond Police Department K-9 officer is getting body armor.  Max will receive a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a donation from the non-profit organization Vested Interest in K-9s.  The group is located in Massachusetts and making the donation in memory of a K-9 officer from California.

 

 

More info here:

 

 

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RICHMOND COMMON COUNCIL ORDINANCES TO FUND OLD REID DEMO

(RICHMOND)- Richmond Common Council is taking up two ordinances that deal with the loans the city is taking out to tear down the old Reid Hospital and clean up the site.  The ordinances were introduced at last night’s council meeting and referred to the finance committee.  The city has been approved for just over eight million dollars in loans, though the actual cost of the project is still pending.

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CAR, TRAIN COLLIDE ON NORTH 15th

(Richmond, IN)--A woman escaped serious injury when her car collided with a train Sunday night in Richmond.  It happened at the crossing near North 15th and F.  Investigators have already determined that the crossing arm was working correctly, but they’re not sure if the train hit her or if she drove into the side of the train.  A family member indicated that a dog that was in the car hopped onto her leg and forced her to hit the accelerator.  The driver was taken to Reid Health to be checked out.  The dog was not hurt.

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STOLEN GUN, MASK FOUND AFTER BULLET GOES THROUGH FRONT DOOR

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond police were sent to the 900 block of South 18th on a shots fired call at 1:15 Monday morning.  When they arrived, they found a bullet hole through a front door and a stolen gun and a mask in the front yard.  The resident of the home never called police.  Investigators are calling it an attempted robbery.  It’s not clear if the home’s resident knew a bullet came through the front door.  There is no suspect information.

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CITY GRANTED ONE-TIME DEADLINE EXTENSION FOR STELLAR GRANT PROGRAM

(Richmond, IN)--This spring, Richmond city officials came under fire due to a deadline that was missed for the Stellar Grant program.  That program is helping to fund millions of dollars’ worth of repairs and upgrades to Uptown Richmond and the North Tenth Street area.  Now, city leaders have learned that the deadline for façade work Uptown has been extended to the end of next month.  State officials told local leaders last week that there would be no further extensions.

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COUNCIL TO DISCUSS OLD REID LOANS ON MONDAY NIGHT

(Richmond, IN)--On Monday, Richmond Common Council will address two loans that would fund clean-up of the old Reid property.  One is a zero-interest loan for $2.8 million to clean up contamination.  The other is a $5.25 million, 2% interest loan that would demolish and remove the buildings.  The loan application indicates cleanup would begin this October and would take a year and a half to complete.  The application says the city intends to use the property as a multi-use residential or commercial property and city park by May of 2021.

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FORMER RICHMOND RESIDENT ACCUSED OF PRODUCING CHILD PORN

(Winchester, IN)--Randolph County investigators are calling a former Richmond resident a true predator.  49-year-old Rodney Baker now lives between Lynn and Winchester.  He’s charged with attempted child solicitation and possessing child porn.  According to a press release, Baker sent multiple images of himself to what he thought was a 15-year-old girl but was really a law enforcement agent.  That led to the discovery of images that included Baker involved in inappropriate conduct with young children.  He’s in the Randolph County Jail.

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EDC SURVEY SHOWS ONLY 3% OF EMPLOYERS EXPECT LAYOFFS

(Richmond, IN)--This week, the EDC of Wayne County released results of a labor and wages survey that was conducted in Whitewater Valley counties.  In that survey, 55% of employers said they plan on adding workers in the next year while only three percent expect layoffs.  More than a third of employers indicated substance abuse is at least a moderate problem in the workplace.  Production workers in our area are making a median wage of $13.85 per hour.  General laborers report a median pay rate of $14.18 per hour.

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PREBLE, DARKE, AND BUTLER COUNTY TO GET TWO MEDICINAL MARIJUANA FACILITIES

(Columbus, OH)--Preble, Darke, and Butler County would be allowed a total two medicinal marijuana dispensaries to cover all three counties when Ohio’s program is fully implemented.  State regulators issued a map this week showing a county-by-county breakdown.  A board took into account potential patient population in each area.  No specific locations in our area have been revealed.  The program must be implemented in a little more than a year.

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EDC RELEASES RESULTS OF LABOR AND WAGE SURVEY

(Whitewater Valley)--The EDC of Wayne County has published results of a labor survey.  The survey encompasses all Whitewater Valley counties.  One of the key findings is that nearly 30,000 people are considered to be underemployed.  2300 people in our area who are unemployed would consider re-entering the workforce.  The median pay rate that they say they would need to work again is $12 an hour.  Underemployed workers said they would commute an average of 32 miles to work at a better job.  The survey also looks at wages.  Kicks 96 and 101.7 The Point will cover that part of the survey in news on Friday.

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FORMER TOWN COUNCIL MEMBER SENTENCED FOR DUI

(Richmond, IN)--Former Fountain City Town Council member Jesse Berger was back in the Wayne County Jail Thursday morning.  Berger has had two alcohol-related arrests in the last year and was sentenced Wednesdayday for operating while intoxicated.  Also jailed Thursday morning was 36-year-old Amanda Richards.  She had been wanted for neglecting her dependent and was located Thursday morning at a home on North C in Richmond.

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CORDELL POOL EXTENDS HOURS

(Richmond, IN)--The Cordell Municipal Pool in Richmond is extending its hours for the remainder of the season.  Parks Superintendent Denise Retz said in a release Wednesday that issues with the pool early this summer prompted the extension.  The pool will now be open Tuesday nights for Family Nights.  It will also be open on weekends through September 10.  On that September 10th closing date, the pool’s 50th anniversary will be commemorated.

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SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT RECEIVES RE-ACCREDITATION

(Richmond, IN)--The Wayne County Sheriff’s Department has been re-accredited by a national commission that ensures agencies meet the highest standards of law enforcement.  It’s a big deal because only a handful of departments nationally receive the accreditation.  Assessors from CALEA were in Wayne County in March to do an on-site assessment and then forward findings to commissioners.  That commission then unanimously approved the re-accreditation.  Sheriff Jeff Cappa and Deputy Rick Barth went to Rhode Island last week to finalize their status.

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PUBLIC DISPUTE LEADS TO COUPLE'S ARREST FOR FELONY CHILD NEGLECT

(Richmond, IN)--A public domestic dispute led to the arrest of a Richmond couple on felony child neglect charges Tuesday night.  24-year-old Israel Saylor and 23-year-old Jordan Pentecost were pushing a stroller with two children near South 5th and E Streets when an argument broke out.  When police arrived, they found that both Saylor and Pentecost were under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  Pentecost was also allegedly in possession of drug paraphernalia.  Both were in jail Wednesday morning. The two young children were not hurt.

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NW INDIANA ATTEMPTED MURDERER ARRESTED WITH GUN IN RICHMOND

(Richmond, IN)--A man who was once arrested in northwest Indiana for attempted murder was caught with a gun in the lot of the Village Pantry on West Main in Richmond Tuesday night.  41-year-old Andre Glenn now lists a Centerville address.  A traffic stop Tuesday night led to a search of the car, which turned up the weapon.  Glenn was in jail Wednesday morning where he’s charged with being a serious violent felon in possession of a handgun.

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CHANGES MADE TO REID HEALTH'S MOTHER-BABY CENTER

(Richmond, IN)--Changes are coming to Reid Health’s Mother-Baby Care Center, beginning with the name.  That department is now being referred to as the Family Birthing Center.  Recent upgrades include classes for not only mothers, but also for family members that deal with caring for a newborn.  There’s also a Sleep Safe program.  Reid says the name change is a better reflection of the services that are now offered.

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FOUR ARRESTED ON DRUG, COUNTERFEITING CHARGES

(Richmond, IN)--Contact with two people in an alley near North 16th and A in Richmond Monday night resulted in the search of a nearby home and the arrest of four people.  Officers saw movement inside as they were questioning two people outside.  A search warrant was then obtained.  Multiple types of drugs were recovered.  22-year-old Angel Nunez was charged with possession of meth and maintaining a common nuisance.  20-year-old Kalina Hayre also allegedly had meth, marijuana, and counterfeit money.  Mike Delucio and William Richie were also jailed.  All four remained behind bars Tuesday morning.

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HAGERSTOWN MAN INJURED IN MOTORCYCLE CRASH

(Delaware County, IN)--A Hagerstown man was seriously injured in a crash involving a drunken driver in the Muncie area Monday night.  44-year-old Douglas Marshall of Hagerstown was riding his motorcycle on State Road 67 when a driver pulled out of a gas station into his path.  Marshall was thrown from the motorcycle and the driver fled the scene.  He was caught a short time later.  Marshall was taken to a Level One trauma center.  His condition had not been released by early Tuesday morning.

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SERVICES PENDING FOR DUKE WARD

(Richmond, IN)--Services are still pending for a Richmond man who was largely credited with helping to bring summer baseball to McBride Stadium.  Duke Ward died last Friday after having suffered a heart attack early last week.  Ward was instrumental in bringing the Richmond Roosters to McBride in the 1990’s.  He also was part of a trio that brought the River Rats to McBride after the Roosters folded.  Ward was also the owner of Side One Music in Richmond.

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MAN CHARGED MORE THAN 40 TIMES SINCE 2003 JAILED AGAIN

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man who has had more than 40 arrests since 2003 was back in a familiar place Monday morning – in the Wayne County Jail.  This time, police spotted 31-year-old Matthew Eversole and 30-year-old Anita Jarrett on what was thought to be a stolen scooter on Grand Boulevard.  Both were charged with theft.  Jarrett was charged with possession of methamphetamine.  Eversole was still free on bond from his most recent crime when he was arrested Sunday night.

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RANDOLPH COUNTY CONSIDERS USING VOTE CENTERS

(Winchester, IN)--Randolph County is considering using the vote center concept that Wayne County has used for several years.  The first of several required public hearings on the subject takes place Tuesday night at 6 at the Commissioners Room of the courthouse.  Proponents say reducing the number of polling places and letting people vote wherever they want would save the county money.  Right now, Randolph County pays about $7500 each election to maintain 18 polling places.

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TWO MEN ARRESTED NEAR WHERE WOMAN OVERDOSED

(Richmond, IN)--Two men were taken into custody Sunday near where a woman overdosed and had to be revived with CPR.  54-year-old Jonny Dixon and 41-year-old Chris Pardo were still in the Wayne County Jail Monday morning.  They’re both charged with possession of cocaine.  Dixon is charged with maintaining a common nuisance.  The arrest came at his home in the 900 block of North C.  Dixon also allegedly gave police a false name.

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MCL REVERSES ITS DECISION TO CLOSE IN RICHMOND

(Richmond, IN)--MCL in Richmond has reversed its decision to close and will now remain open indefinitely.  Corporate leaders met there Thursday afternoon.  As that meeting broke up, a sign went on the door announcing the decision.  It was only nine days ago that they had said MCL would close.  The reason for the reversal has not been released.  But, when MCL decided to close, a source close to the situation indicated the restaurant could not come to terms with Hull Property Group.  They’re the owners of the Richmond Mall.  MCL had reportedly wanted upgrades to the building as part of its lease and had set July 17 as the deadline to reach an agreement.

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BANKS WITH LOCAL BRANCHES TO MERGE

(Whitewater Valley)--There’s been a transition involving two local banks.  MainSource Financial Group is being acquired by Cincinnat-based First Financial.  MainSource has branches in Richmond, Centerville, and Hagerstown.  First Financial has branches in Connersville, Camden, and Oxford.  The merged companies expect to close 45 or 50 offices across the Midwest, but the specific branches have not yet been identified.

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MULTIPLE CREWS CALLED TO LYNN HOUSE FIRE

(Lynn, IN)--Multiple agencies were called to the scene of a house fire in Lynn Friday morning.  The fire broke out at a home in the 800 block of West Church Street at 3:30 Friday morning.  Fighting the fire was made more difficult because the company that provides energy to the home was slow to respond.  There’s no word yet on whether or not anyone was inside, what started the fire, or the extent of the damage.

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REID RIDE WILL NOT BE MADE UP THIS YEAR

(Richmond, IN)--The Reid Ride is off for this year.  The ride, which involves hundreds of bicycle riders covering about 23 miles across Wayne County, had been scheduled for last Saturday.  Weather prevented the ride from happening.  Now, organizers say they’ve been unable to come up with a make-up date this year due to scheduling conflicts with volunteers and first responders.  The Reid Ride has provided more than 10,000 pairs of shoes to kids across the area.

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16 OF 31 CURRENTLY COMPLIANT WITH DRUG DIVERSION PROGRAM

(Richmond, IN)--Wayne County Prosecutor Mike Shipman released an update on the county’s drug diversion program Wednesday.  That program offers reduced or eliminated criminal charges to addicts if they can complete the program.  Shipman said that there are currently 31 people in the program.  16 of those people are compliant with the requirements; 15 are not.  A total of 91 people have attempted the program since its inception in June of last year.

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SWAT TEAM INVOLVED IN HEROIN BUST

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond SWAT Team officers cordoned off an area in the 700 block of North 15th Street Wednesday afternoon as they executed a search warrant.   Once the house was cleared and secured, the Drug Task Force took over and arrested 40-year-old Eric Charles on a drug charge.  Heroin was recovered from the scene.  Scanner traffic indicated two other people were detained, but there is no indication that those two were arrested.

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ESCAPEE FOUND NAKED IN CORNFIELD

(Fayette County, IN)--A Fayette County man who walked away from a work release program last month was captured Wednesday, but it wasn’t a typical apprehension.  Deputies had received numerous complaints earlier this week of a naked man in cornfields.  That naked man had also been knocking on doors and trying to flag down cars.  On Wednesday, deputies found a naked 39-year-old Patrick Allen sleeping in a cornfield.  Allen was asked by deputies why he had been naked for several days.  Allen’s response was that he had been partying.

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BOY DIES AFTER BEING STRUCK ON BICYCLE

(Hagerstown, IN)--A Wayne County boy was died Tuesday night after being struck by a pickup truck.  That boy has been identified as 14-year-old Elijah Neal.  The accident happened at the intersection of Brick Church and Turnpike Roads just west of Hagerstown at 7:45 Tuesday night.  According to a Sheriff’s Department spokesperson, Elijah was on a bicycle and rode into the intersection in front of an oncoming pickup truck that was driven by 22-year-old Chandler Grogan of New Castle.  Elijah was taken Dayton Children’s Hospital where he was pronounced dead.  No criminal charges were filed and there was no indication that drugs or alcohol were involved.

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AREA UNEMPLOYMENT RISES SLIGHTLY

(Whitewater Valley)--Unemployment numbers in our area trending upward again after bottoming out last month.  Wayne County is at 3.3%.  That’s up 2/10 of a percent.  Fayette is at 4.4, Randolph is at 3.5, Franklin has 3%, and Union County is at 2.9% unemployment.  Numbers on the Ohio side are slightly higher with Preble County at 4.7%, Darke at 4.4%, and Butler County at 4.9%.  All of those numbers, though, are at least a full percentage point lower than they were at this point last year.

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ONE DEAD AFTER MOTORCYCLE CRASH NEAR GREENS FORK

(Greens Fork, IN)--The name of the man killed in a Wayne County motorcycle accident has been released.  61-year-old James Fields of Richmond was pronounced dead at the scene of a crash on North Washington Road just south of Greens Fork at around 8 o’clock Monday night.  Fields’ motorcycle went off the road and down an embankment.  The investigation is continuing pending toxicology.

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WAYNE COUNTY'S WORKFORCE CONTINUES TO SHRINK

(Wayne County, IN)--New employment numbers are out for Wayne County.  Unemployment numbers have ticked back up after a huge drop last month.  This month, 76 more people are listed as unemployed as compared to last month.  The most notable number, though, continues to be Wayne County’s shrinking work force.  The county is approaching dropping below 30,000 in the workforce.  829 fewer people are in the Wayne County workforce today than were at this time last year.

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ICONIC LOCAL BUSINESS FOR SALE

(New Paris, OH)--An iconic local business is for sale.  Wesler’s Orchard is listed with a local realtor and appears for sale on the website landandfarm.com.  The 80-acre property just outside of New Paris was purchased by Frank Wesler 87 years ago and has been operated as an orchard for decades by Wesler’s descendants.  The family has indicated they want to retire after many successful years in business.  Asking price for the land, store, and home that sits on the property is $1.1 million.

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ALLEGED CHILD MOLESTER SURRENDERS AT JAIL; BONDED OUT BY FATHER

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man turned himself in at the Wayne County Jail over the weekend on a felony child molesting charge.  42-year-old Peter Angi and his father showed up at the jail at just after midnight Sunday morning.  Angi’s father then immediately posted bond and Angi was set free.  Details of what Angi is alleged to have done have not yet been released.

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MAN WHO ALLEGEDLY ROBBED TWO EATON CONVENIENCE STORES CAUGHT

(Eaton, OH)--There were two convenience store armed robberies in Eaton overnight Sunday night and Monday morning, and one person was in custody Monday.  The first happened at the Village Pantry on South Barron at just before 11 last night.  A man displayed a handgun and took money from the register.  Then, at just before 3 o’clock this morning, the Speedway station on North Barron was robbed at gunpoint.  This time, the suspect was taken into custody.  He’s been identified as 36-year-old Russell McMillan.  McMillan is facing a host of felony charges.

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RICHMOND MAN JAILED FOR SOLICITING SEX FROM CHILD

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man woke up in the Wayne County Jail Friday morning after being taken into custody Thursday night for allegedly soliciting sex from a child.  45-year-old Roy Nelson was arrested in the 300 block of South West 1st Street.  Details of what Nelson is alleged to have done have not yet become available.  Child solicitation is a Level Five felony.

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FRANKLIN COUNTY EMPLOYEE CLAIMS SHE WAS FIRED BECAUSE SHE REFUSED TO COMMIT CRIMES

(Brookville, IN)--There’s even more trouble for Franklin County government, and this may be the most serious accusation yet.  Now, a former employee has filed a lawsuit against Franklin County’s Commission and Council.  In the lawsuit, Kim Robinson claims she was fired earlier this year from her job as deputy auditor because she refused to commit illegal acts.   Robinson claims she was told to pay some county employees twice for the same holiday, to give employees sick pay when they were not entitled, and to hide ghost employment.  Robinson claims she received orders to commit the illegal acts from the county’s clerk, treasurer, and the Circuit Court judge.

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RICHMOND WOMAN WANTED IN KENTUCKY CAPTURED ON U.S. 40

(Wayne County, IN)--A Richmond woman allegedly gave police a false name during a traffic stop that turned up several types of drugs late Thursday afternoon.  Officers found methamphetamine, cocaine, syringes, and other drug paraphernalia when a car occupied by 35-year-old Jessica Dunn and 55-year-old James Mikesell on U.S. 40 at Pennville Road between Centerville and Cambridge City.  Dunn likely gave police the false name because she’s wanted in Kentucky.

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PENNSYLVANIA COUPLE CAUGHT WITH MULTIPLE DRUGS ON NATIONAL ROAD EAST

(Richmond, IN)--Two Pennsylvania residents were caught in Richmond Thursday night with lots of drugs.  The 18-year-old man and his 26-year-old girlfriend were taken into custody in the 5500 block of National Road East and jailed at 6 o’clock Thursday night.  RPD officers recovered methamphetamine, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia.  Both were also charged with felony maintaining a common nuisance.  There’s no word yet on what the couple was doing in Richmond.

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IURC TO HEAR SUGARCREEK DISPUTE THURSDAY

(Cambridge City, IN)--The dispute over wastewater treatment in the Gateway Industrial Park goes before the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission Thursday.  SugarCreek Packing, with the backing of both the town of Cambridge City and Wayne County, is asking for the commission to intervene.  SugarCreek has claimed that the failure of the Western Wayne Sewer District to follow through on promises to treat wastewater has prevented the company’s expansion.  Thursday’s hearing is preliminary and will establish a timeline for future hearings.

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CENTERVILLE MAN ARRESTED FOR EXPOSING HIMSELF

(Richmond, IN)--A Centerville man who had been convicted of auto thefts in Randolph and Jay County last year was behind bars in Wayne County Wednesday morning charged with an entirely different kind of crime.  23-year-old Kali Cryor was arrested on North 4th in Richmond Tuesday.  Cryor allegedly exposed himself to a child yesterday and then gave police false information when officers investigated.

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ALLEGED BURGLAR CAUGHT WITH GLASS STILL IN SHOES

(Richmond, IN)--An allegedly drunken and unruly Richmond man was caught Tuesday after a residential burglary in broad daylight.  33-year-old Anthony Bishop is charged with burglary after he was found Tuesday at a home in the 400 block of South 10th.  A resident found that a window had been smashed to gain entry.  Bishop was sitting on the porch when police arrived with shards of glass from the window he had just broken still in his shoes.

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EATON CONSIDERS CLOSURE OF RAILROAD CROSSINGS

(Eaton, OH)--The city of Eaton has 16 railroad crossings within just a mile and a half of track.  Railroad representatives are now working with the city to reduce that number.  Norfolk and Southern has offered the city a financial incentive to close at least three crossings.  They say that each crossing increases the likelihood of an accident from numerous trains that pass through Eaton on the same rail line that cuts through Richmond.  Crossings that could be closed include Cherry or Walnut Street.

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WAYNE COUNTY CONTINUES TO AVERAGE ONE NEW NEGLECT OR ABUSE CASE DAILY

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County is continuing on its pace of one new, substantiated case of child abuse or neglect every day in 2017.  According to newly released numbers, Wayne County had 149 new cases of abuse and neglect in the first 151 days of the year.  It also keeps the county on pace for a substantial increase from last year.  Currently, Wayne County cases are up 21% from the same point in 2016.

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