(Richmond, IN)--Reid Hospital’s board has approved a 3 ½% rate increase. But, the good news is that it’s the lowest increase in 17 years and is equal to the national average. CEO Craig Kinyon said in a prepared statement that he sees reasons for optimism entering the new year and credited the hospital’s emphasis on wellness and prevention because reimbursement to providers is tied to patient quality indicators. Reid largest single-year increase was in 2003, when rates went up nearly ten percent. Reid is also facing challenges in the coming year. According to a statement released Tuesday, Reid expects to incur expenses that will not be reimbursed in 2015 that total $435 million. Medicare write-offs for 2014 will be $280 million. In the last six years, bad debt and charity care costs have jumped from $60 million to $126 million. CEO Craig Kinyon said that charges that are not reimbursed directly result in higher costs to commercially insured patients.
(Richmond, IN)--The Wayne County Chamber of Commerce issued a strong statement Tuesday about health care for employees of the city of Richmond. The chamber is urging the city to partner with Reid Hospital. They say Wayne County government and Richmond Community Schools was able to provide raises to employees due in part to their partnerships with Reid. The chamber also said that a proposed clinic to be used only by city employees adds duplicate costs with unproven benefits.
(Whitewater Valley)--For the first time in more than four years, gas prices at some spots in the Whitewater Valley has dipped below $2 a gallon. On Wednesday morning, gas was available in Eaton and in Connersville for $1.97. It was selling at $1.99 in Winchester. Inside the city of Richmond, though, gas is still above $2 and remains around $2.10 at most stations. Just a little further away – 35 miles from Richmond in Middletown – gas was going for $1.77 Wednesday. 2010 was the last time gas fell below the $2 mark.
(Richmond, IN)--Overnight Monday night and into Tuesday morning, the Reid Hospital emergency room was once again nearly full with people suffering from some nasty bugs. But physician Thomas Huth said it’s not the flu. "A lot of that is not actually influenza," Huth said. "It happens that there are a lot of other viruses that are not influenza that people are seeing - both gastrointestinal and upper respiratory viruses." And, because it’s not the flu, the flu vaccine won’t help. "The gastrointestinal illness that's going around now is other viruses that are causing that. The vaccine won't prevent that," Huth said. Still, local health officials recommend getting a flu shot if one has not been obtained. A trip to the ER won’t do much good in most cases for a gastrointestinal virus. Huth said this will. "Fluids, particulary just plain water, certain types of juices, maybe sodas, and lots of rest, Tylenol." Urgent care centers in Richmond have also been full in the last two weeks.
(Richmond, IN)--The future of the Quality Inn building on National Road East in Richmond is up in the air after employees learned Monday that the hotel was closing immediately. Tourism Director Mary Walker said Monday night that she hopes another company will assume control of the building and its 135 rooms, but indicated that building’s age and condition may make that a challenge. 30 employees are losing their jobs. Walker’s office is helping shift reservations to other Wayne County hotels.
(Connersville, IN)--Details of a massive Connersville meth lab bust have been released. Court documents indicate that when law enforcement officers entered the East 6th Street home of David Wolfe, they found five different one-pot meth generators along with finished product, scales, and a supply of ingredients needed to make meth. Wolfe faces ten counts of manufacturing meth. He was being held Tuesday without bond.
(Richmond, IN)--Kicks 96 and the Point News has learned that the Richmond Quality Inn on National Road East in Richmond is closing immediately. One employee Monday morning said that staff was notified this morning that the hotel will not be taking additional reservations. Doors will close by Tuesday at the latest. The building has operated under numerous names since opening in the 1970’s, including the Holiday Inn, the Ramada Inn, and a Susse Chalet. Details of immediate plans for the building were not released. The building has deteriorated in recent years. There’s no word on how many employees will be affected.
(Richmond, IN)--On Monday, Kicks 96 and the Point News looked back at 2014's biggest local news stories in a variety of categories. Here's a recap.
WEATHER: Only two days into 2014, heavy snow caused numerous accidents. The Whitewater Valley would be in for four more months of winter weather. Warming centers opened in late January as the temperature dropped to 15 below. Richmond finished the winter 337 degrees below normal. The city even saw an accumulating snow on April 15. Several roads closed with flooding rains on June 19. Winter weather returned on November 17, when the area received one of its earliest accumulating snows in recent years.
ECONOMY: A consolidation of Stride Rite was approved in January. In April, ground was broken for Wayzata at the old Visteon plant. In May, EDC CEO Valerie Shaffer explained why Richmond lost out on a 200-job manufacturer. "They said that our electric costs were much higher compared to other Indiana cities," Shaffer said. Throughout the summer, wind turbines sprung up around Lynn. September brought an announcement from Henny Penny that it would undertake an $8.3 million expansion. And, in November, Reid Hospital announced new usages for the old Ruby Tuesday’s and 600 Building uptown.
ISSUES: There was plenty of local controversy in 2014. In February, it appeared to Wayne County Sheriff Jeff Cappa that sexual offenders would be housed at a Richmond trailer park. "We were not notified until what appeared to be the last moment," Cappa said. Cappa would eventually keep that from happening. Also that month, Union County was up in arms about its controversial band director. Richmond spent most of the year in a legal battle with John Cahill over two burned-out homes. Wayne County issued three same-sex marriage licenses in late June. RP&L General Manager Jim French resigned in July after massive amounts of inappropriate material was discovered on his work computer. Board president Don Winget refused to discuss every element of story, including why he informed employees without the board’s knowledge. "I can't comment on that, either," Wingett said repeatedly. And, in the fall, Richmond Common Council members dealt with financial records that were months behind. "The money's in the bank. We've just got to figure out exactly where it goes," said Mayor Sally Hutton.
CRIME: A Preble County killer was executed in January. Richmond foot doctor Brian Altman was found in Texas and ultimately admitted in Wayne County that he videotaped an employee using the restroom. There was a murder on Sheridan Street in April. Just a few days later, four men were shot at North 15th and H. A Richmond teenager was found beaten to death in an alley in May. A drug distribution ring at the Dorn Center in Richmond was busted in late July. There were also plenty of armed robberies. The man now known as the Bicycle Bandit struck more than once in the fall. He is still on the loose.
ODD: In January, dispatchers from across the Whitewater Valley said they had gotten numerous calls about late-night booms. Remember the Skittles scare? That came in March, when Richmond feared contaminated candy had been sold locally. In June, buffaloes ran loose on Wallace Road. There was a crazy chase in July in Richmond…one guy on one scooter with a gun was trying to catch another guy on a different scooter. Also that month, a man was caught taking pictures of kids at Cordell Pool. "There are people that don't have good intentions, and you should always be looking out for your kids' best interest," said the mother that noticed the man.
GOOD NEWS: In January, Richmond made a national list of the best Main Streets. One store there, Veach’s, was featured on NBC. In February, a Wayne County man struck it rich with a million-dollar lottery ticket. "Probably a once-in-a-lifetime deal," said the owner of the Fountain City mini-mart. In April, Richmond High School learned its graduation rate had jumped another six percent. In May came an incredible reunion. Ellen Suey finally met the person who rescued her when she was dumped 58 years earlier, as a baby, in a field in southern Wayne County. "By the grace of God, he sent Dave along. And, woohoo!, we're here today," Suey said. And, in October, Governor Mike Pence cut the ribbon on a big expansion of the Levi Coffin House. "Fountain City was a fountain of freedom," Pence said.
(Gratis, OH)--An early-morning car crash in Preble County on Monday knocked out power to 5000 residents. The crash took out a transmission pole on Gratis Enterprise Road. That pole delivers power to multiple substations. "We found a vehicle that had hit the wires to the pole. It snapped the pole. The electric was out to the entire village and part of the township," said Joe Burgess with the Gratis Fire Department. By 8 a.m., only about 500 customers of DP&L remained out. A teenage girl was driving. She was not seriously hurt.
(Richmond, IN)--A trial date of March 3 has been set for the Centerville woman accused of murdering her father by setting him on fire three years ago. 33-year-old Nina Holbrook has spent most of the time since the death of 50-year-old Carl Holbrook at a state hospital in Logansport. Her mental status will be her primary defense if and when the case ever goes to trial. Holbrook is being held without bond.
(Fountain City, IN)--There was a Christmas Day armed robbery in Fountain City. A tall, white man wearing a brown mask entered the Marathon store on U.S. 27, pointed a gun at the clerk, and demanded money. He then fled north. Law enforcement agents scoured the area. One person was pulled over in Randolph County, but no arrest was made. It’s the second time the Fountain City Marathon has been targeted in two weeks. Back on the 15th, a heavy-set white male robbed the store at gunpoint. Police have not said whether or not they believe the two robberies are connected.
(Cambridge City, IN)--Crews from multiple agencies battled a house fire in western Wayne County Friday morning. Fire broke out in the 400 block of Hill Drive in Cambridge City at just before 3 a.m. Friday. Firefighters were on the scene for about a half an hour. The initial report was that the fire broke out in the living room. Damage was heavy, but the home was not considered a total loss. There were no injuries.
(Camden, OH)--A Christmas morning fire forced a Camden family from their home. The fire is thought to have started in the kitchen in a home in the 10000 block of Hoel Road near the Rush Run Wildlife Area. It was fully engulfed by the time crews arrived. All of the occupants were able to get out of the house safely. The house is considered a total loss. The Red Cross is helping the displaced family.
(Richmond, IN)--It was a scary incident for Richmond police officers Tuesday night…officers were sent to the 100 block of North 13th at 8 p.m. 52-year-old Lance Brown opened the door, allegedly with a gun in his hand behind his back. A struggle immediately ensued. Brown, at one point, tried to get an officer’s weapon. An officer’s glasses were broken with fragments going into his eye. Despite his 6-foot, 240-pound size, Brown was taken into custody. And, as evidenced by his mug shot, Brown suffered minor injuries.
(Richmond, IN)--Richmond police considered shutting down an area near Hidden Valley late Tuesday night as they tried to deal with a domestic incident. A female fled a home on South West 17th when a man later identified as 53-year-old Jimmy Legg allegedly assaulted her. RPD learned that Legg was armed and had military experience. He turned out the lights as police arrived. Legg eventually surrendered. The female victim required medical attention.
(New Paris, OH)--A vigil was held Tuesday night in New Paris for 10-year-old Samantha Carpenter, who was shot and killed by Brian Harleman on Monday night. More than a hundred people turned out. "This is a very strong and supportive community," said Angel Lawson. Samantha’s mother, Catharine Gessman, continues to recover and was listed in stable condition Wednesday at a Level I trauma center. Tuesday night, Samantha’s classmates like Charlie Mitchell remembered their friend. "She made me laugh all the time, and nobody else could." Others expressed their frustration that Harleman, who shot and killed himself, had numerous previous instances of domestic violence. "Even with a restraining order...it's just a piece of paper. And a piece of paper didn't save this little girl and it didn't save her mom," one attendee said. Samantha was a fifth-grader at National Trail Elementary.
(New Paris, OH)--Two people, including a ten-year-old girl, are dead following an apparent domestic dispute in New Paris. It happened late last night on New Paris–Gettysburg Road. It appeared to investigators that an adult male shot and killed the girl, shot and wounded the girl’s mother, and then turned the gun on himself. "Any loss of life is not good. But then, when you have a small child who has lost their life at the hands of someone else, it just compounds what you're dealing with," said Preble County Sheriff Mike Simpson. The adult female was taken to Reid Hospital with wounds that were described as non-life-threatening. No names have been released. There had been a history of domestic violence at the home. James Singleton lives nearby and had heard the couple fighting. "I'd heard them argue. I just figured it was a normal husband and wife argument," Singleton said. "There is a history of domestic violence between our suspect and the mother of the child," Simpson added. Both shooting victims were found in the home’s driveway. There had been an active restraining order in place.
(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond realty group has been absorbed into another. A statement from Prime Property Realty indicates that Prime has joined the Richmond office of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate First Realty Group. Prime Broker/Owner Tracie Upchurch cited Better Homes’ technological upgrades as one of the main reasons for the merger. First Realty Group has nearly 70 agents in the Richmond area. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
(Richmond, IN)--The political action group of Richmond civic and business leaders was to have met Monday night. That group is pushing for Kyle Ingram to be Richmond’s next mayor. They’re also working to come up with new candidates for Richmond Common Council. The group is called Leadership Richmond. Their original goal was to raise $50,000, although that number has since increased. Former Richmond Mayor Roger Cornett is personally picking up checks.
(Richmond, IN)--Richmond physician Dr. William Fisher and his family continue to recover after a Black Friday plane crash in southern Michigan. Son Bryce Fisher was piloting the plane. "Between the engine dying and actually hitting the trees, we probably had 25-30 seconds," Bryce told WBND-TV in South Bend.. He recalls how his dad, William, helped his mother. "He, with a broken back, pulls out my mom," Bryce added. Today, Barbara Fisher is in Reid Hospital’s Acute Rehab Unit. "Bryce, Bill, and I...our hands are securely in the Lord...can't be any other way," Barbara sad. She expects to be released in time for Christmas.
(Richmond, IN)--Police responded to a shots fired call at a Richmond hotel late Sunday night, but wait until you hear what it turned out to be. Officers responded to the Hampton Inn on Commerce Road just off of National Road East at around 11:30 Sunday night. When they arrived, they determined that no gunshots were actually fired…not even close. It turned out to be a basketball team that was staying at the Hampton Inn jumping up and down on an upper floor.
(Brookville, IN)--The Nativity scene on the lawn of the Franklin County courthouse will stay up until Friday. That scene has drawn a lawsuit from the ACLU of Indiana. On Monday, attorneys for both sides will tell the court that the continuance of a hearing is not necessary after the parties reached the compromise agreement on Friday. But, the ACLU’s lawsuit against the county will proceed. The national group Freedom From Religion will still actively try to make this the last year the scene appears on the courthouse lawn.
(Richmond, IN)--The home of Richmond City Clerk Karen Chasteen was heavily damaged by a fire Thursday. Smoke originating from the 200 block of North 21st could be seen from at least half the city when the fire broke out at around 4:30 p.m. The fire was contained to an addition to the home. "The original construction is actually what helped it stay in the new construction," said Battalion Chief Eric Holmes. Still, damage was extensive. It was set at $70,000. There were no injuries. The fire was started by a faulty antique light fixture.
(Richmond, IN)--Two Richmond teenagers have been charged with robbery. 17-year-olds Taij Brown and Devante Ferguson were returned to the Wayne County Jail Thursday from a juvenile detention center in Muncie. Both are being charged as adults. Details of the robbery Brown and Ferguson are alleged to have committed have not been released. Both are being held on $25,000 bonds.
(Richmond, IN)--There’s good news for Richmond’s Meltdown Winter Ice Festival…it’s on! The festival, which is scheduled for late next month, was in jeopardy as recently as earlier this week because organizers lacked funding to bring sculptors to Richmond. Tourism Director Mary Walker confirmed Thursday that funding is now in place. Donations for ancillary events are still being sought. Those donations can be made through Center City.
(Richmond, IN)--A single mother and her four children escaped a house fire in the first block of South 16th in Richmond late Wednesday night. They were awakened by another mother and her two children, who had just returned to the home the eight people shared. "It's lucky the one family came home as early as they did to wake up the other family and get them out," said Battalion Chief Jeff Glenn. The fire quickly took over the second floor and attic as numerous firefighters battled the blaze. "There was a partition wall that was built up to hide the utilities. When it caught on fire, it went up the chase inside the walls," Glenn added. Investigators will return Thursday to look into the cause of the fire. Damage was set at $55,000. Firefighters cleared the scene at around 2:30 Thursday morning.
(Richmond, IN)--Here’s more on the Richmond political action committee that’s pushing for Kyle Ingram to be the city’s next mayor and that, by its own statement, formed to influence future community leadership. A filing date with the state has been set for January 21st. That’s when anyone who donates more than a hundred dollars must be identified, along with the dollar amount of the donation. Chairman and former Richmond Mayor Roger Cornett earlier this week declined to discuss the PAC’s goals.
(Oxford, OH)--A study released Wednesday calls Oxford the best college town in the entire country. The study was done by the website wallethub.com. The website looked at 280 cities and based their rankings on numerous criteria…things like crime rate and unemployment. The home of Miami University beat out places like Bloomington, which finished 15th, and West Lafayette, which was 26th.
(Richmond, IN)--A plea deal has been reached for one of the defendants accused of taking part in the murder of 17-year-old Caleb Woosley of Richmond this past May. 18-year-old David Maish would serve two years in prison. Maish, though, would have to testify against three other defendants who were more directly involved in Woosley’s murder. Maish did not take part in the murder, but did help the other three suspects clean up afterward. A plea and sentencing hearing is pending.
(Richmond, IN)--The Richmond Community School Board has named an interim superintendent in the wake of Dr. Allen Bourff’s departure. Betty Poindexter was instrumental in finding Bourff; now, she’ll lead RCS until a permanent replacement is found. Poindexter has served for the last 16 years as an associate professor of leadership and policy studies at IU. On Wednesday afternoon, the board will meet with a search team to begin screening candidates.
(Richmond, IN)--An alleged Richmond drug dealer was able to post a $15,000 bond and is now free, less than a day after being arrested on a host of charges. Police allegedly found drugs in a car being driven by 47-year-old Devon Johnson during a traffic stop Tuesday. That led to a search of his home, where investigators found heroin, cocaine, marijuana, medication, weapons, and ammunition.
(Richmond, IN)--The Chairman of a newly-formed Richmond political action committee is keeping quiet about the goals of the organization. Former Richmond Mayor Roger Cornett is listed as the chairman of Leadership Richmond. It’s a group of Richmond civic and business leaders that has thrown its support and money behind Kyle Ingram to be Richmond’s next mayor. In an email shared between its members, Leadership Richmond’s states is goal to "influence future community leadership." Cornett was contacted Monday by Kicks 96 and The Point News and refused to comment or explain the organization’s goals in more depth. Other officers, according to documents filed with the state, are Steve Mosey, Treasurer, and Dan Stamper, Custodian of Records. Ingram has not yet announced his candidacy.
(Fountain City, IN)--An armed robber targeted a Fountain City convenience store Monday night. At around 9:15 p.m., a suspect described as a heavy-set white male wearing a mask and camouflage jacket entered the Marathon store on U.S. 27, pointed a gun at the clerk, and demanded money. The man then fled north on 27 in what was described only as a silver passenger car. There were no injuries. No surveillance image has been made available yet.
(Richmond, IN)--A local Political Action Committee has been formed to support and fund a mayoral candidate in Richmond. The group is called Leadership Richmond PAC. The group is made up of numerous business and civic leaders in Richmond. According to the group’s update e-mailed to its members, they have interviewed six possible candidates for mayor and are throwing their support behind one who has not yet announced that he’s running. That’s Kyle Ingram. The group said Ingram has the vision, passion, and overall leadership that Richmond needs. Ingram currently works as an NCAA basketball official involving major universities. Other candidates include two that have already announced: Diana Pappin and Dave Snow, and others that are considering: Matt Strittmatter, Gary Turner, and Monica Burns. Leadership Richmond PAC is trying to raise $50,000 to support Ingram. $40,000 has already been committed. The group meets December 22.
(Richmond, IN)--The reward being offered for information leading to the arrest of Richmond’s bicycle bandit has been increased significantly. The reward has been increased from 3 to $10,000 for information that helps police locate the man who has robbed the Uptown branch of First Bank Richmond three times beginning on October 8. He’s tall, thin, and white. His getaway bicycle is very distinctive.
(Richmond, IN)--For the second straight Saturday, a march will take place from the Madonna of the Trail to the Richmond City building in response to recent national police shootings. This time, though, organizers have addressed a local issue. "The city had cut funding for that," said organizer Drew Gorey in reference to the de-funding of the Human Rights Commission in 2010. She said last week’s walk was mostly positive. "Overall, it was supportive. We had a couple of negative reactions, but not too many," Gorey added. The walk begins at 3 Saturday afternoon.
(Richmond, IN)--For one of the first times since the law went into effect, a man is in the Wayne County Jail for allegedly purchasing too much pseudoephedrine. 42-year-old Jerome Thompson was being held Friday on a $500 bond. Pseudoephedrine is a key ingredient in cold medicine but also in the production of methamphetamine. Indiana law restricts its purchase to the equivalent of roughly 500 cold tablets per person per year.
(Connersville, IN)--An admitted Fayette County child molester will see his case more forward with the same judge that rejected his plea deal. Judge Beth Butsch this week denied a motion to be removed in the case against 47-year-old Roger Kuhn. Kuhn’s plea deal included an admission of only one count of child molestation with a possible prison term of 19 years. The judge’s rejection of the deal means Kuhn faces up to 150 years if convicted on all three felony counts.
(Richmond, IN)--Court documents reveal why charges were dropped against the Richmond man accused last year of molesting a five-year-old girl. The girl’s mother did not cooperate with investigators in the case against Terrance Hatcher. But, Hatcher remainedbehind bars Thursday in a new, separate case of sexual misconduct with a minor. In an affidavit of probable cause, Hatcher admitted that he allowed a 14-year-old girl to perform a sex act on him in August of this year. An initial hearing will likely take place Thursday.
(Richmond, IN)--The Richmond Square Mall is losing a tenant. Employees of Aeropostale confirmed Wednesday that the store would leave the mall when its lease expires at the end of next month. Aeropostle’s corporate headquarters did not return a call Wednesday seeking a reason for the store’s departure. After it’s gone from mall, the closest Aeropostale to Richmond will be in the Cincinnati Premium Outlet Mall.
(Richmond, IN)--Wayne County Commissions gave the go-ahead for several projects Wednesday. $120,000 was approved for a student housing project near the Richmond Meijer store for students of IU East. Commissioners also approved a quarter of a million dollars for a 70-bed rehabilitation facility on Richmond’s north side. It would be built on 26 acres near Industries Road. $170,000 was earmarked Wednesday for a proposed solar structure for Richmond’s new 7th Street Park. And, $15,000 was approved for a pedestrian and bicycle master plan.
(Oxford, OH)--A Cambridge City man accused of kidnapping his estranged wife in April was involved in a standoff in Oxford Wednesday night. 46-year-old Todd Stigleman was being sought for drugs and weapons charges and was located at a home in Oxford Wednesday. Stigleman refused to come out. At around 6:30 Wednesday night, Stigleman stabbed himself in the stomach and was ultimately taken to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton. His condition is not being released.
(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man who spent less than a day in jail last year after being arrested for felony child molesting was back behind bars Wednesday. In March of last year, 33-year-old Terrance Hatcher was arrested and charged with molesting a five-year-old girl. Hatcher posted a $25,000 bond that day and was set free. Jail records indicate he has not served any more time. That is until Tuesday, when he was arrested for sexual misconduct with a minor. Details of the latest allegation have not been released. Terrance Hatcher does not appear on the sex offender registry and is being held on a $20,000 bond.
(Richmond, IN)--There were no significant leads Tuesday in the search for the Bicycle Bandit. That’s the name given to the man who has robbed the Uptown branch of First Bank Richmond three times in the last two months…most recently on Monday. A surveillance image was released Tuesday.
(Brookville, IN)--The man who swindled Whitewater Valley investors out of millions of dollars has been sentenced to 40 years in prison. But Jerry Smith of Brookville will have to finish serving his federal sentence in Atlanta before being returned to Franklin County. Smith used an elaborate Ponzi scheme to steal the life savings of several investors in Fayette and Franklin County totalling $9 million. Smith was ordered to pay restitution to more than 30 victims, although prosecutors say there’s no money left in Smith’s accounts.
(Richmond, IN)--For the third time in the last two months, the Uptown branch of First Bank Richmond was robbed – most likely by the man now being called the Bicycle Bandit. The tall, thin, white male entered the branch at 4 o’clock Monday afternoon and demanded cash. He then fled south on a bicycle. Police searched the area around the Leland and the Tenth Street Park but were unable to locate the suspect. Monday was Richmond’s seventh bank robbery of the year. A $3000 reward is in place for information leading to the arrest of the Bicycle Bandit.
(Richmond, IN)--Investigators will exhume a body from a Richmond-area cemetery this week to see if the remains are that of a Laurel woman who went missing 40 years ago. The body was discovered in a sewer on North 17th Street in 1974 but was too badly decomposed to be identified. The Indiana State Police now believes the body is that of Lula Miller of Laurel. DNA will be collected and compared to that of family members. A positive ID could take six months.
(Richmond, IN)--Primex Plastics is expanding. Details were discussed at Monday’s meeting of the EDC Board. A $70,000 EDIT grant was approved for the project that will result in 19 new jobs. Primex will invest close to $5 million in its Richmond facility. The EDC Board also approved next year’s budget. It’s up about $44,000 from this year. Most of that is for a new position that will manage existing business and education.
(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond community leader has died. Victor Jose died Friday. Jose was instrumental in the development of several community staples, including the Graphic. He was one of the creators of the Wayne County Foundation. More recently, along with Rick Ahaus, he created the Third Grade Academy. Services are still pending through Doan & Mills Funeral Home. Victor Jose was 92.
(Liberty, IN)--St. Clair Ambulance has a new headquarters in Liberty – at least temporarily. After fire did major damage to its former post on West High Street on Friday morning, St. Clair on Monday was operating out of the former West End Bank building in Liberty. St. Clair is fully operational and will continue its search for a permanent headquarters.
(Richmond, IN)--A New Paris man led Richmond police on a chase over the weekend that led to the discovery of the ingredients needed to manufacture methamphetamine and some finished product. 22-year-old Jacob Davis was caught in the 400 block of North West First Street after a short police chase on Saturday. Davis remained in the Wayne County Jail Monday morning and is facing a host of felony charges.
(Liberty, IN)--Fire broke out Friday morning at the home that serves as the base of Union County’s ambulance service. "There was a fire at our Station #2 building. It's currently under investigation and we are operating at full capacity," said St. Clair Ambulance spokesperson in talking about a converted home on High Street in Liberty. The fire started early Friday morning. Crews were cutting holes in the roof to vent the smoke. St. Clair just began operating in Union County a couple of months ago. There were no injuries. The cause of the fire is electrical in nature.
(Richmond, IN)--A march is planned Saturday in Richmond to protest the recent police shootings that have occurred nationally. Right now, close to a hundred people are expected to gather near the Madonna of the Trail at Glen Miller Park at 3 o’clock Saturday afternoon. They’ll march to the city building in a move that’s being called “Richmond Stands in Solidarity.” The march is not in reaction to any alleged wrongdoing by the Richmond Police Department.
(Connersville, IN)--Law enforcement agencies in Fayette County held a press conference Thursday to discuss details of Task Force Connersville. "Our goal for this whole thing is to arrest the drug dealers and try to stop the drugs coming in from our community," said Connersville Police Chief David Councilor. Figures released Thursday show that, since September, eight people have now died from heroin overdoses and 41 more have been hospitalized. According to Assistant Chief Dennis Perkins, the goal is more than just making arrests. "We decided to go at it with a different approach and actually get the ones that are being arrested help with kicking the habit." 17 people have already been arrested by the newly-formed task force.
(Richmond, IN)--Reid Hospital on Thursday is addressing the flu threat to the Whitewater Valley this season. Reid expects the number of flu cases to peak this weekend, which is about four weeks ahead of last year’s peak. But, the number of flu cases locally is expected to drop between 10 and 20% from last year. So far, Reid has only admitted five patients with the flu. Those patients’ average age is 26.
(Richmond, IN)--An incident Thursday morning on Richmond Avenue in Richmond brought a large police response. City officers and Wayne County deputies responded as two men fled the scene of an assault. Witnesses indicated the victim was on the ground and was being kicked and beaten by several people. That victim was taken to Reid Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. There’s no word yet on any arrests.
(Richmond, IN)--Tourism is on the rise in Wayne County. During Wednesday’s meeting of the Wayne County Council, Tourism Director Mary Walker indicated that innkeepers tax revenue is up 17% this year compared to last. Better yet, 17,000 out-of-towners have already been booked to attend events in the next two years. Council approved a 5% budget increase to handle promotions. Council also approved the hiring of an additional staff member for the EDC.
(Richmond, IN)--RP&L rates are going up, but the good news is that the increase is so small it will hardly be noticeable for residential customers. RP&L officials Tuesday said the increase is less than one percent and is due to the Energy Cost Adjustment, which is based on market volatility. The real concern, though, is for large industrial customers of RP&L. Increases take effect in the first quarter of next year.
(Camden, OH)--The former youth pastor of Highland Heights Church in Camden has been sentenced for having sexual contact with an underage female member of the church. Kevin Reed assaulted the girl in the church and in other locations. "Other than going to the church, sometimes he would drive her around the city of Eaton. That's where some sexual contact and conduct took place," said Steven Hurd with the Eaton Police Department. Reed was sentenced to 60 days in jail, but 30 of those days can be eliminated if Reed performs 200 hours of community service. Reed is a former Camden mayor.
(West Alexandria, OH)--A West Alexandria man is facing five felony charges after a meth lab was discovered in his garage. 40-year-old David Shindeldecker was pulled over because he was driving without a license. Deputies allegedly found meth in his car and in his wallet. That led to a search of Shindeldecker’s home, where meth-making materials were found. Children under the age of 18 were living in the home.
(Richmond, IN)--Part of Salisbury Road remains closed and it will stay that way until at least spring. Monday night, council member Larry Parker suggested not using the contractor again due to the long delay. But Mayor Sally Hutton assigned the blame. "Well, no, it wasn't the contractor's fault. It was the utilities that didn't get done," Hutton said. The closure is significantly longer than planned. And it will be even longer. "It's ridiculous. It will be two and a half years by the time it gets done," Parker said. Hutton did not specifically name the utility that she says is causing the delay.
(Richmond, IN)--Richmond Common Council Monday night removed the city’s scooter registration requirements. It’s due to an overlap with state registration requirements. Those new guidelines will go into effect at the first of the year. RPD Captain Donnie Benedict outlined some of the requirements. "You're going to have to have a valid state ID. You're going to have to pass a road sign test. As of now, you don't have to have any insurance," Benedict explained. Under state guidelines, scooters will be permitted to go up to 35 miles an hour.
(Berrien Springs, MI)--An FAA spokesperson said Monday it would be several weeks before a report is issued on the small plane crash in southern Michigan involving Richmond physician Dr. William Fisher and his family. The FAA will interview witnesses, pull and review radar, and look at the plane itself – including the maintenance history. They’ll also examine the pilot’s flight history. Two people were hurt in the crash last Friday. Two others walked away.
(Richmond, IN)--Two Richmond men remained behind bars Monday after a shooting on South Eighth in Richmond Sunday morning. 23-year-olds Michael Johnson and Virgil Isaacs were taken into custody after 19-year-old Tyvon Clayton was found shot in the face. Witnesses said the group was arguing just before shots were fired. Officers recovered the handgun used in the shooting. Clayton was taken to a Level I trauma center to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
(Berrien Springs, MI)--Four victims of a small plane crash continued to recover Monday. Richmond Dr. William Fisher, his wife, Barbara, his son, Bryce, and a female companion were on board a small plane that went down in southern Michigan on Friday. The hospital where the victims were taken refused to release any updated information on their conditions Monday. The FAA is continuing its investigation.
(Richmond, IN)--A Connersville man was booked into the Wayne County Jail over the weekend on heroin-related charges. 39-year-old Benjamin McNamara was caught in Wayne County, allegedly in possession of heroin, drug paraphernalia, and stolen property. Investigators are working to find out who owns that stolen property. McNamara is being held today on a $25,000 bond.