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Local News with Jeff Lane Archives for 2017-09

DRUG DEALER HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR OVERDOSE VICTIM'S DEATH

(Richmond, IN)--The call for drug dealers to be held responsible for the deaths of people who die from overdoses is getting stronger, and that’s happened now in Richmond.  40-year-old Eric Charles has been charged with reckless homicide.  According to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, Charles sold heroin laced with fentanyl to Linsey Fintack in July.  Fintack ingested the drugs and died.  Charles was in the Wayne County Jail Friday morning.

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BREWERY COMING TO CENTERVILLE

(Centerville, IN)--A brewery appears to be headed for Centerville.  Turner Insurance President Kyle Turner has posted on social media that he intends to open what will be known as Five Arch Brewery.  The plan is to renovate an existing building and open by August of next year.  Johnson Family Farms will be opening in the space above Five Arch.  They currently produce meat and vegetables from a farm in Fountain City and are regulars at the Richmond Farmer’s Market.  That business is targeted to open in March of next year.

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RANDOLPH COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER INDICTED FOR EMBEZZLEMENT

(Farmland, IN)--A Monroe Central school board member has been indicted for embezzlement.  49-year-old Michelle Phillips is charged with felony theft.  Phillips allegedly stole nearly $4000 from Bear Backers.  That’s an organization that supports the Randolph County school’s athletic teams.  She had access to the money over a six-month period that ended in May.  There’s no word yet on how the criminal charge will affect Phillips’ status on the school board.

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RESERVE UNION COUNTY DEPUTY DIES

(Liberty, IN)--There is some sad news from Union County, where a reserve sheriff’s deputy has died.  Reserve deputy Tim Blacker died Thursday.  A community event was held just a couple of weeks ago for Blacker at Frame’s Outdoor Sports Supplies in Liberty.  Other law enforcement agencies across the Whitewater Valley were expressing their condolences Friday morning.  Service and visitation for Tim Blacker are pending.

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BODY FOUND IN ROBERTS PARK

(Connersville, IN)--An investigation was underway Thursday morning in Fayette County after a dead body was found near Roberts Park in Connersville Wednesday night.  Authorities were sent to an area near the shooting range behind Roberts Park and located the body of a male.  Police did not immediately say if they believe foul play was involved.  They’re also not releasing the man’s name or indicating how long he may have been there.  More details are expected to be released later Thursday.

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RCS BOARD DISCUSSES BUILDING ASSESSMENT

(Richmond, IN)--The Richmond Community School Board met Wednesday night.  Civic Hall is in line for $350,000 in upgrades.  Improvements will include upgraded lighting and sound systems.  The money is coming from a private trust.  Other buildings in the Richmond Community School system will undergo an assessment in the next month.  A consultant was hired earlier this year to look at the buildings and determine how they can best be utilized in the wake of declining enrollment and other issues.  A final report will be presented in January.

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EATON BANS MEDICAL MARIJUANA PRODUCTION

(Eaton, OH)--The production, cultivation, and sale of medical marijuana has been banned inside the city of Eaton.  New state law allows for a very limited number of marijuana grow sites, but localities can ban them.  And that what Eaton has done.  City council passed the ban with no public opposition.  The ban will actually go into effect after a 30-day waiting period to allow for any referendum petitions.

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US 27 BRIDGE OVER I-70 TO CLOSE AGAIN THIS WEEKEND

For the second weekend in a row, the U.S. 27 bridge over I-70 will be closed for maintenance. Last weekend, crews began the project, replacing bridge joints and installing a modified concrete deck overlay. The bridge will close at nine p-m Friday and re-open by 6 a-m on Monday. U-S 27 access over the interstate and left-turn motions at the Exit 151 interchange will be unavailable during construction.

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CENTERVILLE PD K-9 OFFICER PASSES AWAY

The first K-9 officer to serve the Centerville Police Department has died. The department says Kendra died this week after five years of service. Kendra was a German Shepard, and the police department says she died of complications due to an illness. She joined the department in September 2012 through a donation made by Moose Lodge number 167 in Richmond.

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MAN IN CUSTODY AFTER SWAT STAND OFF

A man is in custody after a standoff with a SWAT unit. The Wayne County Sheriff’s Department says 31-year-old Joshua Plough barricaded himself in his home near National Road West and Round Barn Road Tuesday morning. It happened after officers received a report of a domestic dispute. Plough was arrested Tuesday afternoon after SWAT officers entered the house. A one-year-old child was found unharmed.

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LOCAL OFFICIALS SEE NARCAN PARTIES

(Richmond, IN)--The group Heroin is Here and local law enforcement agencies are dealing with something relatively new as they work to prevent overdose deaths.  Officials say Narcan parties have reportedly been occurring in the Whitewater Valley.  It’s when heroin and Narcan are sold together by dealers as package deals.  Users gather and designate someone to administer the Narcan if an overdose occurs.  Narcan is readily available at most local drug stores.  Some local users are also getting tattoos noting the number of times they have been revived with Narcan.

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THANKFUL CHILDREN MAKE CAKE FOR RPD OFFICER

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond police made a post on Facebook Monday that’s garnered 500 likes.  The post shows Officer Smith surrounded by a group of seven children in the area of North 17th and Main Street.  The officer was approached by that group of children who had make him a cake and told him thanks for making them feel safe.

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EATON POLICE WARN ABOUT COUNTERFEIT MOVIE MONEY

(Eaton, OH)--Eaton police are dealing with another round of counterfeit money.  The phony money has turned up a few times this year in Preble County.  It was made specifically for the motion picture industry.  The bills even say “for motion picture use only” right on them, but look authentic otherwise.  Recently, a couple used the bills to purchase jewelry at Eaton’s Walmart.

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PRICE INAUGURATED AS EARLHAM'S 18th PRESIDENT

(Richmond, IN)--Alan Price officially became the 18th president of Earlham College on Saturday.  Price is an Earlham graduate who went on to Harvard Law School.  In his address Saturday, Price talked about improving the relationship between the city and the college.  "Earlham needs Richmond and Richmond needs Earlham.  There have been times in our history when we have forgotten this basic truth," Price said.  Before returning to Earlham, Price was appointed by former President Barack Obama to serve as the Associate Director of Management for the Peace Corps.

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RPD PREPARES FOR MORE I-70 CONSTRUCTION

(Richmond, IN)--Here comes more road construction.  Richmond Police are again preparing for lane restrictions on I-70 over New Paris Pike.  This time, eastbound I-70 will be restricted.  It’s expected to cause eastbound traffic to back up west of the U.S. 35 exit and bring some interstate traffic into Richmond.  Eastbound I-70 will be reduced to one lane starting on October 13.  The restriction will last for two weeks.

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MAN WANTED FOR HOME IMPROVEMENT FRAUD CAPTURED

(Centerville, IN)--A wanted Wayne County man was tossed into the Wayne County Jail Monday morning for charges stemming from alleged home improvement fraud.  49-year-old Gregory Keeton was located on Kellam Road in Centerville Monday morning.  Keeton had failed to show up for a pre-trial hearing.  He allegedly took money for home repairs and then failed to do the work.  Kellam has a long criminal record and has a history of failing to comply with court orders and hearings.

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MISS PREBLE RETURNS HOME

(Eaton, OH)--Miss Preble is back home in Eaton.  Miss Preble is a military tank that was placed in Eaton in 1957 to honor World War II and Korean War veterans.  But the tank was removed from the former armory five years ago.  This weekend, Miss Preble was placed into a new Preble County home at Fort St. Clair.  The tank re-entered Eaton during a parade that was attended by hundreds on Saturday.

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WAYNE COUNTY NEARS DROPPING BELOW 30,000 IN THE WORKFORCE

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County continues to shrink in relation to the number of people working and the number of people in the workforce.  According to newly released numbers, Wayne County continues to move toward having less than 30,000 people in the workforce.  Today, the number is 30,178, and that’s a drop of 95 people from last month and 643 fewer than this time last year.  The number of people actually working in Wayne County dropped by 266 last month.

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TWO ARRESTED FRIDAY MORNING IN VETERANS PARK ON DRUG CHARGES

(Richmond, IN)--Lots of drugs were recovered when a couple was arrested in Richmond’s Veteran’s Memorial Park Friday morning.  34-year-old Jesse Gross of Bath and 36-year-old Amanda Hoskins of Liberty were allegedly using drugs in the Whitewater Gorge.  Hoskins was charged with possession of drugs, syringes, and paraphernalia.  It’s Hoskins’ fourth drug arrest in Wayne County just this year, including one as recently as three weeks ago.

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HISTORICAL MARKER TO BE DEDICATED

(Randolph County, IN)--A brand new state historical marker will be placed in Randolph County on Sunday.  It’s located in a very rural area northeast of Spartanburg and will mark the location of the Union Literary Institute.  The school was a noted stop along the Underground Railroad and was one of the first in Indiana to allow black students.  When it was established in 1846, black students were excluded from public schools by state law.  It was attended by Hiram Revels, the first black U.S. Senator.

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COUNTY CONSIDERS PULLING PUBLIC NOTICES FROM PALLADIUM-ITEM

(Richmond, IN)--Wayne County is considering ending the publishing of legal ads and public notices in the Palladium-Item.  The county and other entities are legally required to publish notifications of meetings, sheriff’s sales, and a host of other issues.  Historically, that’s been done in the local newspaper.  But it’s not likely to happen any longer.  County Attorney Ron Cross told Wayne County Commissioners that the Palladium has not been responsive to requests for legal ads.  Cross added that Sheriff Jeff Cappa reported problems with advertising sheriff's sales with the Palladium-Item.  Cross also said that other municipalities in Wayne County are also switching from the Palladium to Western Wayne News.  Now, the county is considering using the Western Wayne News and Nettle Creek Gazette.  A change would mean a significant savings.  In the last four years, the county has spent $144,000 with the Palladium, but only $27,000 with Western Wayne News.

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WAYNE COUNTY RECEIVES OVER $1 MILLION IN ROAD GRANTS

(Wayne County, IN)--New grant money has been awarded for more local road projects.  State Representative Dick Hamm announced Wednesday that Wayne County would get half a million dollars.  The city of Richmond will get nearly $550,000, while Hagerstown will get $270,000.  Meanwhile, traffic on Chester Boulevard between Sim Hodgin Parkway and North C Street will be shifted Friday onto new pavement on the east side of the road.  One lane will stay open in each direction.

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MARIJUANA RECOVERED AFTER DUI CRASH

(Richmond, IN)--Marijuana was recovered following a crash on Elks Road in Richmond early Thursday morning.  Police reports indicate a car driven by 33-year-old Lindsey Hedge of Fountain City sheared off a utility pole when she crashed near the east entrance to Glen Miller Park.  Hedge was taken to Reid Health, where she allegedly had a blood alcohol content of .213.  The amount of marijuana that was recovered has not been released.

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16 STUDENTS INJURED IN FAYETTE COUNTY BUS CRASH

(Fayette County, IN)--16 students were taken to Fayette Regional Health System when a school bus crashed just south of Connersville High School Tuesday afternoon.  The students were all members of the Sunman-Dearborn Middle School swim team who were headed to Connersville for a swim meet.  The superintendent said it was a scary sight.  "When you show up and see a bus on its side with fluid on the ground and windows broken out...you can imagine how frightened the students were."  None of the injuries were serious.  The bus driver told investigators that the brakes went out as the bus was coming down a hill.

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U.S. 27 TO CLOSE AT I-70 INTERCHANGE

(Richmond, IN)--Yet another major Richmond roadway is set to be affected by construction.  It will happen this weekend, when an INDOT contractor closes U.S. 27 at the I-70 interchange.  The good news is that it will only last for the weekend beginning at 9 o’clock Friday night, but it will prevent travel on 27 between Richmond and Fountain City.  Contractors will be replacing bridge joints and modifying the concrete deck.

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SMITH IMPLEMENTS ACQUIRED BY KOENIG EQUIPMENT

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond business is being acquired by another company.  Smith Implements sells farm and other equipment near the junction of U.S. 35 and State Road 38.  Smith Implements is being acquired by Koenig Equipment.  Keonig is based in Botkins Ohio and operates a store in Oxford.  The first day of business for the new operation is scheduled for the end of next month.  Smith Implements had operated for nearly four decades.

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ENROLLMENT STRONG AGAIN AT IU EAST

Enrollment at IU-East is strong again, even though numbers are down slightly.  The school says almost 35-hundred students are enrolled for the fall semester.  That’s down 2.6-percent from the fall of 2016, but IU East says the decline was caused by a change in how enrollment is calculated. The Indiana University system no longer counts high school students taking dual-credit classes as part of enrollment at its campuses.

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PUBLIC HEARINGS SCHEDULED ON RICHMOND SEWER HIKES

Public hearings will be scheduled on a proposed hike in sewer rates.  No vote was taken after a first reading of the rate increase during last night’s meeting of Richmond Common Council. The increase would pay for court-ordered improvements to the sewer system, and sanitation engineer Elijah Welch says the city is trying to keep costs as low as possible.  The proposal would raise sewer rates for customers by 35-percent over the next three years.

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RICHMOND COMMON COUNCIL APPROVES LOANS TO DEMOLISH OLD REID

The Richmond Common Council has approved two loans to pay for the demolition of the old Reid Hospital.  The amount of one of the loans was cut after the city got a contribution of more than 1.4 million dollars from Wayne County.  Councilman Clay Miller is among those happy that the city is also spending some cash on hand for the project.  The two loans total around eight million dollars.

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ROUND BARN ROAD TO CLOSE FOR CONSTRUCTION

Road crews are starting work on Round Barn Road today.  That means a stretch of the road from Gaar Jackson Road to Industries Road will be closed for the next 45 days.  The project will widen Round Barn Road so it can handle truck traffic from the new Blue Buffalo plant being built at the Midwest Industrial Park on the far northwest side of Richmond. 

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INDIANA AMERICAN WATER WORKING WITH INDOT ON EAST MAIN FIX

(RICHMOND)- Part of East Main Street in Richmond is still closed almost two weeks after a water main break.  Now, Indiana American Water says it will be shutting down more lanes of the street soon to make permanent repairs.  The westbound lanes of East Main near 16th Street have been impacted since a water main broke on September 5th.  The water company says it is working with INDOT on a plan to replace all five lanes of a section of East Main sometime over the next two weeks.

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COUNCIL TO ADDRESS SEWER RATE HIKE MONDAY

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond residents are facing the possibility of a substantial increase in sewer bills.  Richmond’s Common Council on Monday will address a proposal that would increase sewer rates by 35 percent over the next three years, beginning with a 15 percent increase next year.  The increase would cover $33 million in bonds for five projects that are largely court-mandated repairs to an aging sewer system.  Richmond is currently eight years into a 21-year rebuilding schedule.

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INVESTIGATORS RECOVER SEMI'S BLACK BOX IN TRIPLE-FATAL CRASH

(Camden, OH)--Investigators in Preble County have recovered the black box from the Richmond semi that caused the death of three people and an unborn child earlier this week in Camden.  Police say Centerville’s Brian Murphy was speeding and was inattentive behind the wheel of the semi.  This investigator said the black box can confirm it.  "...how fast the truck was going...did the truck put the brakes on?...It will tell us everything that was going on in that truck."  Murphy was still in a medically induced coma Friday morning.  The company that Murphy was driving for, Family Tradition, LLC in Richmond, refused to comment Thursday.

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FIRE FORCES NURSING HOME EVACUATION

(Winchester, IN)--78 residents of the Randolph Nursing Center were evacuated in ten minutes when a fire broke out there Thursday.  The fire started because of a faulty roof ventilation unit.  Winchester firefighters saw flames shooting from the roof when they arrived.  The fire was quickly contained and caused only about $2500 in damage.  There were no injuries.  Winchester Fire Chief Gary Moore said the fire could have been much more devastating if not for the staff’s quick reaction.

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OHIO DOE RELEASES SCHOOL REPORT CARDS

(Columbus, OH)--The Ohio Department of Education released report cards for schools across the state Thursday, including those in our area.  Only a handful of schools statewide got A’s, and a small percentage got B’s.  In Preble County, National Trail, Eaton, and Twin Valley all received C’s.  Tri County North and Preble Shawnee got D’s.  Tri Village in Darke County also received a D.

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AUTOCAR TO EXPAND IN ALABAMA

(Hagerstown, IN)--Autocar in Hagerstown is expanding, but it won’t be anywhere close to the Whitewater Valley.  Autocar is investing $120 million into a facility in Birmingham, Alabama that will create 750 new jobs.  "Not just any jobs, but jobs that pay a high salary," said Alabama Governor Kay Ivey making the announcement Wednesday.  The announcement does not mean that Autocar will close its Hagerstown plant that employs 170 people, but it does mean that some production lines will be moved or decreased.  Autocar said it chose Alabama because of its great business environment and skilled workforce.

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RCS TO PUT CR RICHARDSON BUILDING UP FOR SALE

(Richmond, IN)--On Wednesday night, the Richmond Community School Board approved putting the CR Richardson Elementary building up for sale.  That building has gone unused by RCS for several years but is the current home to both the Excel Center and the YMCA.  Leases go into next year and would be honored with any purchase agreement.  An asking price for the building was not discussed.  One more RCS note…Wednesday’s postponed homecoming parade takes place Thursday night.  It goes from 10th and East Main along Main Street and ends at the high school.

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MOTHER IN TRIPLE-FATAL PREBLE COUNTY CRASH WAS PREGNANT

(Camden, OH)--The death toll has risen to four in a Preble County crash that happened Tuesday afternoon.  Family members said Wednesday that Melissa Hudson was pregnant with her first boy.  She, her husband Schon, and daughter Emeri were all killed because Centerville truck driver Brian Murphy blew through a red light.  Investigators said Murphy was speeding and was inattentive.  The Hudsons leave behind two other daughters, who are both elementary students in the Preble Shawnee system.  "The school and the community is going to do everything it can to support that family financially and emotionally...whatever it takes to get them through this terrible time," said Superintendent Matt Bishop.  Murphy remained in a medically induced coma Thursday morning.  He was driving for Richmond’s Family Tradition LLC.

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THREE KILLED; INVESTIGATORS BLAME INATTENTIVE CENTERVILLE TRUCKER

(Camden, OH)--A mother, father, and child were killed Tuesday afternoon because of the inattentive driving of a Centerville trucker.  That’s the initial conclusion of investigators in Preble County. Deputies and witnesses said 61-year-old Brian Murphy of Centerville blew through a red light and slammed into multiple cars at the intersection of U.S. 127 and State Route 725 in Camden.  34-year-olds Schon and Melissa Hudson of Camden and their three-year-old child Emerie all died instantly.  Two other people were hurt.  Murphy was also seriously injured.  Criminal charges are possible and the investigation continues.  127 was closed for more than seven hours.

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TAX CAPS TO COST RICHMOND, WAYNE COUNTY $7.3 MILLION IN 2018

(Wayne County,  IN)--A new state report shows how much tax caps are expected to impact Richmond in the next year.  Tax caps limit how much local governments can collect on residential and commercial property taxes.  According to the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance, the city of Richmond will lose out on $4.1 million in 2018.  The rest of Wayne County will lose out on an additional $3.2 million.  Connersville will also be hit hard.  Next year it will have to do without $3.6 million.  The effect on Liberty and Brookville is not nearly as significant.  Those two communities combined will lose a quarter of a million dollars.

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WAYNE COUNTY OD DEATHS SURPASS 2016 TOTAL

(Wayne County, IN)--49.  That’s the number of people who have died for sure in Wayne County due to drug overdoses already this year.  That number is higher than the total number of deaths for all last year.  Coroner Ron Stevens presented the numbers at a recent Heroin is Here meeting.  The number now is actually likely higher than that due to the lag time between overdose deaths and confirmation from testing.  Five of those deaths are due to an elephant tranquilizer known as carfentanil.  Drugs including marijuana, cocaine, and LSD have all been found locally laced with fentanyl of some type.

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REID HEALTH ANNOUNCES PHYSICIANS' PARTNERSHIP

(Richmond, IN)--Reid Health announced Monday an agreement between the Reid Health Physicians Associates and CareSource.  The agreement will allow people currently under the care of physicians in the Reid network to continue to receive outpatient care from that same doctor.  Before CareSource’s recent announcement that it was offering local residents a marketplace health plan option, those people were at risk of having no coverage at all.  The agreement does not extend to inpatient hospital coverage.

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MAN JAILED FOR BATTERING MULTIPLE OFFICERS

(Cambridge City, IN)--A Cambridge City man was in jail after allegedly battering several police officers Tuesday morning.  Police responded at around 12:30 Tuesday morning to the report of a drunken Amish man pleasuring himself on a bridge on U.S. 40 in Cambridge City.  Officers chased 30-year-old Paul Fisher for four blocks, then Tased him to get him under control.  None of the officers was seriously injured.  Fisher faces charges that include public indecency and felony battery on a police officer.

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TEEN CHARGED WITH CHILD MOLESTING

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond teenager was jailed late Monday night for felony child molesting.  18-year-old Justin Kegley was booked into the Wayne County Jail at 10:20 Monday night, although he was no longer listed as an inmate Tuesday morning.  Details of what Kegley is alleged to have done will become public when an affidavit is filed in Wayne Circuit Court.  That will happen in the next couple of days.

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LOCAL MAN KILLED IN CRASH NEAR DAYTON AIRPORT

(Vandalia, OH)--A Preble County man was killed in a crash near the Dayton International Airport Monday.  Investigators say that 29-year-old Mickey Soard of Lewisburg lost control and hit a tree on Airport Access Road.  The car then burst into flames.  Soard was pronounced dead at the scene.  Police do not yet know if drugs or alcohol played a role.  A passenger in the car survived the crash.  On social media, Soard listed his home as Liberty.

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U.S. 35 TO REOPEN, CLOSE IN DIFFERENT AREA

(Wayne County, IN)--More road construction changes are taking place.  U.S. 35 is expected to reopen Monday just north of State Road 38 after a culvert replacement.  But, 35 will close later this week between Carlos Road and Newman Road for about three weeks.  And, starting this Thursday, southbound 35 between I-70 and Love’s Truck Stop will also close for repairs.  INDOT had hoped to keep that area open and patch pavement, but they’ve determined it will have to be completely closed.  There’s no word yet on how long that stretch will remain closed.

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TWO INJURED IN RANDOLPH COUNTY CRASH

(Randolph County, IN)--Two people were injured, including one who was flown to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, after a crash in Randolph County late Sunday night.  Two vehicles collided at the intersection of State Road 227 and U.S. 36 just east of Lynn.  One person had to be cut from the wreckage.  While one occupant went to Miami Valley, another victim was sent to Reid Health.  Names and conditions have not been released.

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CONSTRUCTION RAMPS UP ON I-70, SOUTH 8TH

(Richmond, IN)--Backups as long as ten miles on westbound I-70 are expected to begin in Preble County Saturday.  That’s because 9 o’clock Friday night, crews will reduce 70 to one lane at the New Paris Pike overpass in Richmond to slide a new bridge into place.  INDOT predicts traffic on National Road East, East Main, and Chester Boulevard will see increased traffic as people look to avoid construction.  The closure will last two weeks.  The backup is predicted to go east of U.S. 127.  A new area of construction is affecting traffic in the Uptown Richmond area.  Crews began Thursday to restrict lanes and remove pavement on Eighth Street from Main Street to South C.  On Friday, they’ll dig a much deeper trench as part of a project that will continue for several months at a minimum.  Friday also marks a shift of construction on the State Road 1 bridge over I-70 near Cambridge City.  Construction will shift from the west side to the east side of the bridge.  That project should be done by November.

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THREE ARRESTED IN SEPARATE METH BUSTS

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond’s string of methamphetamine arrests continued Thursday.  It began early Thursday morning, when police caught 22-year-old Paul Farrow of Lynn at the east-side Richmond McDonald’s with meth.  During a stop Thursday afternoon on Henley Road, 37-year-old Bruce Gibbs was arrested for possessing meth, cocaine, and other drugs.  Three hours later, 42-year-old Hector Santiago was stopped at North 9th and A.  Santiago allegedly had both meth and heroin.  All three men remained in jail Friday morning.

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BARNHIZER MOVES TO FORMER BENCHMARK GRAPHICS BUILDING

(Richmond, IN)--Barnhizer and Associates is moving into the former Richmond home of Benchmark Graphics.  The 23,000 square foot building on Industrial Parkway will contain all of Barnhizer’s equipment and operations.  The future of the two buildings that Barnhizer has occupied in the 700 block of South 9th Street will be determined once the transition to the new building is complete.  Barnhizer has provided local restoration and cleaning services since 1983.

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COUNTY COUNCIL, COMMISSIONERS APPROVE OLD REID CONTRIBUTION

(Richmond, IN)--Wayne County Council and Commissioners on Wednesday both passed resolutions asking the EDC to use $1.42 million in EDIT funds to help with the cleanup of the old Reid Hospital property.  That amount represents half of the cost of environmental remediation.  The next step is EDC Board approval, and that will come Monday.  Then, the proposal to borrow a total of $8 million goes back to Richmond Common Council for a vote on the 18th.

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POLICE RELEASE PHOTO, CHARGES FOR MAN ACCUSED OF ATTACKING GRANDMOTHER

(Eaton, OH)--Eaton police have now released images of the man who they say beat up his own grandmother on Tuesday.  49-year-old Bill McClellan is wanted today on charges that include felonious assault, kidnapping, and aggravated robbery.  McClellan attacked his 90-year-old grandmother and caused serious head trauma.  She is recovering from the attack.  McClellan is known to have ties to both Richmond and Huber Heights.

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FAYETTE COUNTY GOVERNMENT TARGETED IN CYBER ATTACK

(Connersville, IN)--Fayette County government has been the target of a cyber attack.  The county’s IT director told Fayette County commissioners this week that, last month, there were more than 2100 bad log-in attempts on county email accounts from countries that include Russia, China, Rumania, and Bulgaria.  Accounts were not compromised.  The director said it was likely that hackers were trying to get access to the server to send out spam email.

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OLD REID LOAN VOTE ON HOLD AS CITY, COUNTY NEGOTIATE

(Richmond, IN)--City and county leaders discussed their partnership as it relates to the cleanup of the old Reid Hospital grounds Tuesday night.  Richmond Common Council held off on a vote to authorize the pursuit of two loans for the project totaling eight million dollars.  County Council President Pete Zaleski told city leaders that the county is still working on determining what its contribution will be and is working on a series of concessions from the city, including that the city match any county contribution.  A final vote is now expected to take place on the 18th.

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OFFICIALS ASSESSING DAMAGE AFTER EAST MAIN WATER MAIN BREAK

(Richmond, IN)--East Main Street at 16th Street in Richmond remained closed Wednesday morning as officials assess the damage and begin to repair a large water main break that occurred late Tuesday afternoon.  Water pouring from the 14-inch main forced the street, with its new pavement, to buckle and swell.  By late Tuesday night, crews had begun to pump water from underneath the street’s surface.  Indiana American could not put a time frame on complete repair.  By Friday, some interstate traffic is expected to pass through that intersection as I-70 westbound is reduced to one lane.

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U.S. MARSHALS CAPTURE ESCAPEE IN LIBERTY

(Liberty, IN)--A work release escapee from Logansport was captured in Liberty Tuesday night.  U.S. Marshals received a tip that 59-year-old Vonny Craw was hiding out at the Liberty Motel.  Marshals surrounded the motel at 6 o’clock Tuesday night and found Craw, a stolen car, and some cash.  Craw had been serving 20 years for armed robbery when he escaped.  Craw is suspected of having robbed a bank in Linton a couple of weeks ago and committing other crimes recently across southern Indiana.  Charges in Union County are also possible.

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POLICE IN EATON, RICHMOND SEARCH FOR MAN WHO BEAT HIS OWN GRANDMA

(Eaton, OH)--Police in Eaton are searching for a man who they say tied up and beat his own 91-year-old grandma before stealing her van and fleeing the area.  William McClellan has ties to Richmond, and RPD is aware of the search.  McClellan assaulted his grandma at her home on North Street in Eaton Tuesday afternoon.  She was taken to the Preble County Medical Center to be treated for head injuries and was last listed in stable condition.  Police are on the lookout for a 1991 grey GMC Safari van.

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RPD SEEKS TO IDENTIFY ARMED ROBBERS

(Richmond, IN)--RPD investigators are asking for the public’s help in identifying three residential armed robbers.  Surveillance images were released Tuesday from an incident that occurred last week in the 400 block of North 14th.  The three men forced three women who were standing outside to enter a home.  The victims were then tied up with electrical cord.  Y

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ACCUSED CHILD RAPIST FACES MORE CHARGES

(Winchester, IN)--Five more new sex crimes have filed against a Randolph County man who has been in jail since last December for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl.  22-year-old Brandon Kolc now faces five new counts of child solicitation.  Court documents say Kolc engaged in explicit conversations with a 14-year-old girl by phone from the Randolph County Jail, including discussions of how he was going to meet her when he was set free.  That’s not likely to happen any time soon.  He’s set to be sentenced on the original charges in two weeks.

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OUTAGE FORCED REID TO DIVERT E.R. PATIENTS TO EATON UNTIL 6 A.M. TUESDAY

(Richmond, IN)--By 7 o’clock Tuesday morning, Reid Health’s emergency room was again accepting patients after an overnight power outage.  Firefighters were sent to Reid at just before 1 o’clock Tuesday morning after what is assumed to have been a lightning strike.  Power went out and backup generators also failed in at least a part of the hospital.  No patients were moved out of their rooms, but multiple patients had to be diverted to the Preble County Medical Center in Eaton.  The most recent confirmed patient went to Eaton at 5:50 Tuesday morning.  That was for a possible stroke that was occurring on University Boulevard – just a few blocks from Reid.  Reid sent a short message to Kicks 96 and the Point Tuesday morning saying that patient care has continued uninterrupted.

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FIREFIGHTERS RESPOND TO HENNY PENNY

(Eaton, OH)--Firefighters were called overnight to one of Eaton’s largest employers.  Crews were sent to Henny Penny on U.S. 35 at around 11:20 Monday night.  By about midnight, the fire was declared contained.  Officials have not yet elaborated on what caught fire, what caused it, or the extent of the damage.  There was no immediate report of any injuries.  More details are expected to be released a little later Tuesday morning.

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WILDFIRE SMOKE PROMPTS LOCAL CALLS TO 911

(Whitewater Valley)--Did you notice the sunset Monday night or the odd-looking, orange moon?  That occurred because smoke from the wildfires in the western United States and southern Canada made it all the way to the Whitewater Valley.  The ensuing rain led to the smell of smoke in our area, prompting many local calls to 911 last night.  Smoke in the upper atmosphere can also intensify lightning.

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TWO ARRESTED FOR ARMED ROBBERY

(Richmond, IN)--Two alleged armed robbers were jailed Thursday.  25-year-old Christopher Fluhr was booked into the Wayne County Jail Thursday afternoon at 5 o’clock.  He was located in the 800 block of South E.  42-year-old Jeremy Parker was also jailed Thursday afternoon.  He was captured at his home on South 11th.  Investigators have not yet said which armed robbery or robberies the two are suspected of committing or if their cases are tied together.  Both were still behind bars Friday morning.

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