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Local News Archives for 2021-10

RPD CRUISER STRUCK DURING CHASE

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man was jailed early Wednesday morning after allegedly striking an occupied Richmond Police Department cruiser during a chase.  It happened in the area of the 1400 block of North B.  Officers tried to stop 40-year-old Everett Cooper.  In an effort to flee, Cooper allegedly backed into the cruiser and fled.  He was then caught following a short foot chase.  The officer that was in the cruiser was not hurt.

INDUSTRIAL PARK WASTEWATER TREATMENT EXPANSION CAN BEGIN MONDAY

(Cambridge City, IN)--It’s been years in the making, but now construction for an expanded wastewater treatment system at the Gateway Industrial Park in Cambridge City is now just days away.  Permitting dictates that actual work can begin Monday.  Not only will it allow SugarCreek to expand, it will also allow the EDC of Wayne County to more aggressively market the industrial park to other potential tenants.  For years, there was a debate about whether to send the wastewater to Connersville or treat it locally at an expanded plant.

NON-MASKING PREBLE SCHOOLS SEE LESS COVID-19 THAN MASKING WAYNE COUNTY SCHOOLS

(Wayne County, IN and Preble County, OH)--Public schools in Wayne and Preble County have had very differing masking policies with differing results.  And those results may surprise you.  According to numbers from both the Indiana and Ohio Departments of Education, Preble County schools, which do not have a mask mandate, have generally had less or equal per capita Covid-19 infection for the 2021-22 school year than their Wayne County counterparts, which do require masking.  It’s most notable in the comparison between Richmond and Eaton schools, which are each county's largest districts.  A masking Richmond school system has reported that six percent of its students have tested positive this school year.  A non-masking Eaton school system has reported that one percent of students have tested positive for Covid-19.  The results in each county's smaller outlying districts show similar rates of infection on a per-capita basis regardless of masking policy.

MAN JAILED FOR DRIVING STOLEN RPD CRUISER 70 MILES AWAY

(Sidney, OH)--A man is in custody after allegedly stealing a Richmond police cruiser from the Richmond Mall on Monday and driving it 70 miles to Sidney.  The RPD cruiser had parked at the mall for an unrelated call.  When officers returned, they found the cruiser missing.  A tracking system inside the cruiser traced it to Sidney.  Officers there tried to stop it, but the driver, who has now been identified as 32-year-old Mitchell Gard of Richmond, fled.  He crashed and was eventually taken into custody after a foot chase.  All RPD equipment was recovered.

CENTERVILLE PREPARES FOR CONTENTIOUS MEETING

(Centerville, IN)--Centerville’s Town Council met Monday night to lay the groundwork for a special meeting Tuesday night that’s expected to result in a packed house.  Tuesday night is the night public comment will be taken about land development and usage with some serious allegations of council improprieties that center on that development.  When council met two weeks ago, it quickly evolved into a nasty exchange between Council President Dan Wandersee and Councilman James Bullen.  Tuesday night’s meeting is set for 7 o’clock at Fire Station #1.

ONE KILLED IN PREBLE COUNTY CRASH

(Preble County, OH)--One person was killed in a Preble County crash Monday night.  It happened in the area of East Lexington and Quinn Road between Eaton and West Alexandria.  The vehicle left the roadway, hit a tree, and went over an embankment into a creek.  The cause of the accident remains under investigation, including if weather played a factor.  The name of the victim has not been released.

WAYNE COUNTY'S WEEKLY COVID-19 CASES HIT TWO-MONTH LOW

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County’s weekly Monday-to-Monday Covid-19 case count continues to drop.  Listen to how the number of weekly cases has dropped in the last three weeks, beginning three weeks ago…286, 201, and, this past week, 146.  That’s the lowest weekly total of confirmed cases in Wayne County since the week ending August 16.  Reid Health had 31 Covid-19 patients Monday morning.  That’s the lowest Monday total of patients since August 23.

WOMAN LOCKS KIDS IN BATHROOM, DETAILS ALLEGATIONS ON FACEBOOK LIVE

(Cambridge City, IN)--There was a large number of first responders at an apartment on North Lee Street in Cambridge City Sunday night.  According to scanner traffic and county officials, a woman had locked herself and several children inside a bathroom and refused to open the door.  She then took to Facebook Live to make various types of accusations involving abuse.  Officers were able to make entry.  At least one person was taken to Reid Health to be checked out.

BRADFORD BUILDING BLOCK UNDER CONSIDERATION FOR POLICE HEADQUARTERS

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond’s Bradford Apartments building is coming down soon, with buildings around it also being removed.  The Bradford building and six others are all between North 12th and 13th and East Main and North A.  That block remains under consideration as a potential location for a new police and fire headquarters.  Earlier this year, a private company was hired to conduct a feasibility study for that potential development.  For now, though, the area will be green space once all the structures are removed.

REID TO PROVIDE AMBULANCE COVERAGE FOR ALL OF WAYNE COUNTY

(Wayne County, IN)--All of Wayne County will now have ambulance coverage from Reid Health.  For the last few years, Reid has provided coverage only to southwestern Wayne County while other companies covered the rest.  This week, though, Wayne County commissioners accepted a bid of close to $1.5 million from Reid for coverage for the entire county over the next five years.  Reid also is currently providing ambulance coverage for Union County.  Also this week, Wayne County’s 2022 budget was set.  The budget for next year comes in at $54 million and includes a three percent pay raise for all employees.

WAYNE COUNTY PHYSICIANS SAY COVID-19 CONDITIONS IMPROVING

(Richmond, IN)--A group of local physicians gathered for a special edition of In Focus Thursday night on WCTV to discuss the Covid-19 situation.  Dr. David Jetmore gave the general consensus.  "We're low compared to where we were, and things are trending downward," Jetmore said.  Wayne County added only 20 new cases Thursday.  It’s also looking a lot better at Reid Health.  "Things are getting better at the hospital in terms of volume.  We have fewer in hospital beds and fewer on ventilators," said Dr. Thomas Huth.  There were 28 Covid-19 patients at Reid Friday morning.  Three weeks ago, that number was 76.

WAYNE COUNTY'S WEEKLY COVID-19 VACCINATIONS DROP

(Wayne County, IN)--There was a big drop this week in the number of Wayne County residents who became fully vaccinated against Covid-19.  265 residents have become fully vaccinated since last Friday.  It represents a drop of well over a hundred people from the 395 people who were vaccinated the week before and the 468 the week before that.  There are now 28,381 Wayne County residents who can now claim full vaccination status.  That’s 43% of the total population.

CENTERVILLE GARAGE LOADED WITH AMMUNITION BURNS

(Centerville, IN)--Early Thursday morning in Centerville, a detached garage with between 5000 and 8000 rounds of ammunition caught fire.  It happened in the 600 block of East Main Street at around 1:30 Thursday morning.  According to scanner traffic, multiple explosions were heard as the garage became fully involved.  Main Street was shut down through Centerville and some nearby residents were evacuated.  There was no report of injury.  There’s no word yet on what started the fire.  The garage was a total loss.

EARLHAM OFFERS FREE TUITION TO STUDENTS WITH LOWER INCOME

(Richmond, IN)--Earlham College Wednesday announced plans to offer free tuition to Indiana students whose families are Pell and State of Indiana grant-eligible and earn at or below the state’s median household income, which stands now at $56,000.  President Anne Houtman said in a prepared statement that the college is doubling down on its commitment to making higher education affordable.  She added that Indiana has experienced an alarming drop in the number of students seeking post-secondary education in recent years.

FUNERAL SET FOR FRANKLIN COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER

(Brookville, IN)--The visitation and funeral for Franklin County School Board member and Union County Highway Department worker Justin Moore has been set for midday Friday at Cook-Rosenberger Funeral Home in Brookville.   He died when he was struck by a car driven by Gina Price of Richmond.  The other worker who was struck, Donald Skaggs, remained in serious condition Thursday morning.

ISP: RICHMOND WOMAN RESPONSIBLE FOR FATAL UNION COUNTY ACCIDENT

(Union County, IN)--The Indiana State Police has taken over the investigation in incident on Monday that claimed the life of Union County Highway Department worker Justin Moore, who was also a member of the Franklin County School Board.  Investigators say that 37-year-old Gina Price of Richmond struck Moore and 62-year-old Douglas Skaggs as they stood outside their work vehicle on Clifton Road.  Moore was dead at the scene.  Skaggs was flown to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton where he was in serious condition Wednesday morning.  Toxicology results are pending.  The case will be turned over to the Union County Prosecutor.  Price was not hurt.

MAN FOUND WITH GUNSHOT WOUND ON SOUTH 5TH

(Richmond, IN)--A man was found with a gunshot wound in Richmond Tuesday morning.  Police responded to the 600 block of South 5th and found 43-year-old Jeremy Butler lying near the sidewalk with a gunshot wound to the shoulder.  Butler had an altered level of consciousness and could not provide police with any information.  He was taken to a distant Level One trauma center and was last listed in stable condition.  Investigators would like to hear from anyone who may have seen Butler walking on South 5th between 8 and 8:15 Tuesday morning.

WAYNE COUNTY ADDS TWO COVID-19 DEATHS

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County reported two more Covid-19 deaths Tuesday.  It brings the total to 252.  The county, though, continues to trend in the right direction with all other indicators.  The seven-day rolling average of new daily cases continues to drop and is down to 27.  There were 26 cases reported Tuesday.  The county’s positivity rate also continues to come down.  It stood at 6.8% Wednesday morning.

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT WORKER KILLED IN UNION COUNTY ACCIDENT

(Union County, IN)--A tragic accident Monday in Union County claimed the life of a highway department worker who was also a member of the Franklin County School Board.  It happened on Clifton Road just north of Liberty when a vehicle went off the road and drove into four workers.  42-year-old Justin Moore was killed.  Moore was heavily involved in the Brookville area and had served as a chaplain in addition to a school board member.  One other Union County Highway Department employee, who has not been identified, was taken to a hospital.  There’s no word yet on what caused the driver to lose control, who that driver was, or whether or not he or she is facing any criminal charges.

REID COVID-19 PATIENT COUNT DROPS BELOW 40 FOR FIRST TIME SINCE AUGUST

(Richmond, IN)--The number of Covid-19 patients at Reid Health is dropping.  Reid had less than 40 patients Tuesday morning – 38 to be exact.  Reid had not been below 40 patients on any Monday since back on August 30, when it had 35 patients.  Eight patients were in the ICU and on ventilators Tuesday morning.  Seven of those patients are unvaccinated.  Wayne County reported 13 new cases Monday.

DRIVER ESCAPES IN TUESDAY MORNING CHASE

(Richmond, IN)--Police are looking for a driver who led them on a chase through Richmond streets Tuesday morning.  It happened at around 2:30 Tuesday morning when officers tried to stop a driver on North E Street.  According to scanner traffic, speeds hit 70 miles per hour as the driver turned south on 18th Street.  The driver crashed in a yard in the Reeveston area and fled on foot, but could not be located.  The truck was taken to impound.

WAYNE COUNTY HAS LOWEST WEEKLY COVID-19 CASE COUNT IN TWO MONTHS

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County has just had its lowest Monday-to-Monday Covid-19 case count in two months.  Since last Monday, Wayne County has had 201 cases.  That’s a 42% drop in cases from the week before and the lowest weekly count since it had 124 on the week ending August 16.  Most other area counties have also had their lowest counts in two months.  Reid Health had 43 patients Monday morning.  That number has held fairly steady for the last three weeks.  72% of those patients are unvaccinated.

MULTIPLE SHOTS FIRED CALLS DEEMED UNFOUNDED

(Richmond, IN)--There were several reports of shots from numerous locations in Richmond early Monday morning.  But, as of 6 a.m., all of those reports were unfounded.  It began at around midnight with a call of shots fired at in the 200 block of North West E.  Then, multiple callers to 911 reported hearing shots on South 52nd.  That was quickly followed by another report of shots from South 5th and E at around 12:30 Monday morning.  Police could not find any evidence of any shots at any of those locations and there were no reports of any injury.

COUNCIL TO DISCUSS ORDINANCE DEALING WITH CITY EMPLOYEES AND COVID-19

(Richmond, IN)--When Richmond Common Council meets Monday night, they’ll deal with an ordinance regarding Covid-19 and city employees.  That ordinance was sent to the Safety Committee two weeks ago.  It would extend Covid-19 paid sick leave for vaccinated employees through the end of the year.  Vaccinated employees would get up to two weeks of paid time if forced to quarantine or get treatment after being diagnosed with Covid-19.  Monday night’s meeting begins at 7 and can be seen live on WCTV.

COVID-19 TESTING TO REOPEN AT FORMER ELDER-BEERMAN BUILDING

(Richmond, IN)--The Wayne County Health Department on Thursday made some announcements about Covid-19 testing.  First, the testing site at the former Elder-Beerman building in Richmond is reopening.  Also, the department expanding testing into outlying communities.  Covid-19 testing will be done each Wednesday at Ace Hardware in Hagerstown, each Thursday at Northeastern schools just outside Fountain City, and each Friday at the Golay Center in Cambridge City.  The number of Wayne County residents to become fully vaccinated against Covid-19 remained fairly high this week.  Another 395 residents have become fully vaccinated since last Friday.  That comes on the heels of 468 people the week before.  There have now been 28,116 people become fully vaccinated.  43% of Wayne County residents are now vaccinated.  But, 60% of residents should now have some level of immunity because they’ve either had the virus or been vaccinated.

WAYNE COUNTY RECORDS TWO MORE COVID-19 DEATHS

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County reported two new Covid-19 deaths Thursday.  It brings the total to 247 residents.  Randolph County also had a death, bringing their total to 99.  The number of patients at Reid Health has held relatively steady this week and stood at 44 Friday morning.  Nine of the ten patients in the ICU and five of the six people on ventilators at Reid Friday were unvaccinated.

VICTIM IN FATAL FAYETTE COUNTY CRASH IDENTIFIED

(Fayette County, IN)--Details of a fatal crash that occurred on Wednesday on State Road 1 just south of Connersville were released Thursday.  Investigators say 35-year-old Bobbi Lamb of Metamora died was a passenger in a car driven by Kevin Hicks.  Hicks lost control, went off the road, and struck a tree.  Lamb was pronounced dead at the scene.  Two other passengers – Michael Lamb and Michaele Schmid were flown to Miami Valley Hospital.  Lamb was last listed in critical condition.

CRAIN SANITARIUM PORCH ORDERED REMOVED

(Richmond, IN)--Part of the historic Crain Sanitarium is coming down.  The home at the corner of 22nd and East Main in Richmond, which has fallen into disrepair in recent years, has had it porch declared a safety hazard.  This week, the Historic Preservation Commission issued two certificates approving the removal of the porches of that building and on a couple of houses to the west.  The president of Indiana Landmarks said that group is working to find a legal solution to what he called the property’s “clouded ownership” and is committed to find a solution to preserve what will be left of the property.  The city of Richmond said it will continue to monitor the condition of the house.  Private contractors have said it would cost far more to repair the house than it would be worth upon completion.  There’s no word on when work to remove the porch will begin.

WAYNE COUNTY REMAINS ORANGE ON COVID-19 MAP

(Wayne County, IN)--There was no change from the week before when Indiana’s updated Covid-19 map was released Wednesday.  It means that Wayne County remains orange along with every other Whitewater Valley county except for Franklin, which stays in the red.  Franklin County has the third highest positivity rate in all of Indiana.  Wayne County added 52 new cases Wednesday, which is above the rolling seven-day average.

CONSTRUCTION SET FOR BUSY RICHMOND STREETS

(Richmond, IN)--Drivers in Richmond will see construction on some heavily traveled streets for the next week.  According to a release Wednesday, milling work will be done Thursday and Friday on both East and West Main Streets, Fort Wayne Avenue, and North and South 5th Streets.  Then, next week, those streets will be repaved.  The release was not specific about what sections of those streets would be affected.

CENTERVILLE TOWN COUNCIL MEMBERS CLASH OVER LEGAL BILL

(Centerville, IN)--The dispute between Centerville’s Town Council President and a member continued Tuesday night.  At issue, in part, is a $26,000 bill for legal fees regarding a Main Street business.  It didn’t take long Tuesday night for things to turn nasty.

Member:  I think it was very inappropriate for you to accuse me of costing this city $26,000.

President:  Well, I could say the same thing about you right here.

 

The dispute continued.

 

Member:  So therefore, you have the right to embarrass and humiliate me in front of Centerville?

President:  Do you want all the Facebook stuff where you bashed me?

 

And, it ended with this threat.

Member:  I'll bring it up here in a little bit.

President:  No, we're not.

Member:  Okay, thank you, sir.

President:  You're welcome.

Member:  Indianapolis will be called.

President:  Fine.

 

 Other members of council did not comment on the issue Tuesday night.

RAMP TO I-70 CLOSES FOR 45 DAYS

(Richmond, IN)--An entry ramp onto I-70 has closed and will remain closed for the next month and a half.  The ramp from State Road 227 onto westbound I-70 closed Wednesday morning for what is the third section of construction on or close to I-70 in just a few miles.  There is still construction on westbound 70 at the state line and on the approach to westbound 70 at U.S. 35 in Preble County.  No significant visible progress has been made on either of those projects in several weeks.

LEAF COLLECTION TO BEGIN MONDAY

(Richmond, IN)--The city of Richmond on Tuesday released details on leaf collection.  Five crews will be out collecting leaves across the city beginning this coming Monday.  As they do every year, the Street Department wants to make sure residents don’t include grass clippings, limbs, or any other yard waste in leaf piles.  Crews will try to pick up on each street once every two weeks.  Leaf collection will continue until a week before Christmas.

WAYNE COUNTY HAS LOWEST DAILY COVID-19 CASE COUNT IN TWO MONTHS

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County on Monday reported its lowest single-day total of new Covid-19 cases in nearly two months.  Wayne County added just 16 new cases Monday.  The last time the single-day total was lower was back on August 15 when it reported nine cases.  The day after that, the daily case count ballooned to 57.  The number of patients at Reid Health also dropped Monday and stands at 41 Tuesday morning.

RICHMOND MAN SHOT LAST WEEK ARRESTED MONDAY

(Richmond, IN)--Zachary Vansickle’s massive arrest record got a little longer Monday.  The 26-year-old Richmond man was jailed Monday afternoon after being found in the first block of South 16th – allegedly carrying a handgun without a license.  It was just last week that Vansickle reported being shot but refused to cooperate with police.   It becomes Vansickle’s 12th criminal case in his adult life.  There’s no word yet on what led to Vansickle’s arrest Monday.

NEW WAYNE COUNTY FOOD ORDINANCE GOES INTO EFFECT

(Wayne County, IN)--A new food ordinance has gone into effect in Wayne County.  There are some new regulations involving mobile food trucks.  There’s another element of the ordinance that will be a little more visible to people who visit local restaurants.  Inspection reports of restaurants will be posted adjacent to the front door of the business.  The first round of new inspections will involve educating managers and owners about new posting requirements.

REID REMAINS ON CRITICAL BED STATUS

(Richmond, IN)--Reid Health has issued a statement saying that resources remain strained and it remains on critical bed status despite the recent downward trend in Covid-19 cases.  Back on 22nd of last month, Reid had a pandemic-high 87 confirmed cases.  That had dropped to 45 by Monday morning.  Since September 1, there have been 60 deaths across Reid’s eight-county service area with the vast majority of the deaths being unvaccinated people.  Temporary overflow areas were still in use at Reid Monday.

CHASE AND CRASH TAKES OUT RICHMOND STOP LIGHT

(Richmond, IN)--An overnight police chase and crash took out a stoplight at North 12th and A in Richmond.  It happened at just past midnight Monday morning.  Police tried to stop a wanted Ohio woman in a stolen SUV.  She crashed as she began to flee at about 65 miles per hour and took out a light pole, which also brought down the actual stoplight at the intersection.  She was taken to Reid Health to be checked out.  Her name has not yet been released.

JUVENILE ARRESTED AFTER DENNIS SCHOOL THREAT

(Richmond, IN)--The threat of violence at a Richmond school on Friday has ended with the arrest of juvenile.  Earlier this week, a school resource officer became aware of a post on Instagram that said violence would take place today at Dennis Intermediate School.  The juvenile who made the post was located and said that the post was intended to be a prank among friends.  That boy or girl has now been charged with felony communication intimidation and has been released to guardians.  Dennis was the site of an intended school shooting in which the would-be juvenile assailant died nearly three years ago.

WAYNE COUNTY VACCINATIONS RISE SIGNIFICANTLY

(Wayne County, IN)--There’s been a big increase in the number of Wayne County residents who have become fully vaccinated in the last week.  Two weeks ago, 289 people became fully vaccinated for the week.  But, this week, the number has jumped to 468.  It means that 27,721 local residents are now fully vaccinated.  That’s 42% of the population.  Combining those that have been vaccinated with those that have knowingly already had the virus means that at least 58% of residents should have some level of immunity.

WAYNE COUNTY JOBLESS CLAIMS CONTINUE TO DROP

(Wayne County, IN)--The number of weekly jobless claims in Wayne County continues to drop.  When the extra $300 in federal benefits ended early last month, the number of Wayne County jobless claims was immediately cut in half.  Now, it’s dropping even further.  Only 27 claims were filed last week.  By comparison, there were 473 claims in just one week in Wayne County in July.  That’s when an announcement was made that the $300 benefit would be extended into September.

WAYNE COUNTY RECORDS TWO MORE COVID-19 DEATHS, INCLUDING RCS BUS DRIVER

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County’s daily number of Covid-19 cases continues to come down, but the recent string of deaths is continuing.  Two more deaths were reported Wednesday, bringing the total to 239 overall and 30th since the first of last month.  One of the deaths in the last week was a Richmond Community School bus driver in her 60’s.  She had been hospitalized for several weeks.  A graveside service for her will take place Thursday.  Wayne County reported 35 new cases Wednesday.

RICHMOND MAN UNCOOPERATIVE FOLLOWING SHOOTING

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond man who said he was shot Wednesday did not cooperate with police.  Officers located Zach Vansickle in the 100 block of North 18th Street.  He had a wound to the arm and said that he had been shot on South 6th.  He was taken to Reid Health but was not willing to provide any other information.  Vansickle has a massive criminal record that includes three open felony cases for drug dealing, burglary, and carrying a handgun as a convicted felon.

HELLCAT BECOMES AIRBORNE AND STRIKES RICHMOND HOUSE

(Richmond, IN)--A young driver escaped serious injury when the 400-horsepower Hellcat he was driving became airborne and struck a Richmond home.  It happened at around 3 o’clock Thursday morning on South 14th across from Merle Henderson Apartments.  "It just hit the foundation.  It didn't get into the house.  Structurally, the house is still sound but it did push the engine back into the car," said Battalion Chief Eric Holmes, who added that the car went airborne when it went up a steep embankment.  No one inside the home was hurt.  "They had him out on the street doing a sobriety test when we got there," Holmes added.  The driver’s age and identity have not been released.

MAN WHO DUMPED BOY'S BODY SENTENCED TO 15-19 YEARS

(Hamilton, OH)--The man who demanded his girlfriend get rid of her three children and then dumped the body of one of them into the Ohio River was sentenced Tuesday.  James Hamilton received 15-19 years for his role in the abuse and death of James Hutchinson at Rush Run in Preble County.  Hamilton did apologize Wednesday.  "I'm terribly sorry about what happened to all three children."  But he then shifted all blame.  "That night, I felt she was taking the kids someplace safe.  When I found out what was going on, I told her to bring them back home and she would not listen to me." Hamilton claimed.  It dumbfounded a prosecutor.  "Are you kidding me?" he said in response.  The boy’s body has never been found.  It does not border on the Ohio River, but Preble County remains the lead agency in the search for the body of James Hutchinson.  James was murdered at Rush Run in Preble County earlier this year, and his body was tossed off a bridge into the river near Lawrenceburg.  Sheriff Mike Simpson said Wednesday that there are no plans to end the search for James and there is still hope that his remains will be recovered.

WAYNE COUNTY RECORDS 237th COVID-19 DEATH

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County reported another Covid-19 death Tuesday.  It brings the total to 237.  There have now been 29 Covid-19 deaths since the first of September.  The county’s positivity rate has dropped further and was down to 8.5% Wednesday morning.  At Reid Health, there are now 53 patients.  All eight patients that were in the ICU Wednesday morning and all six that are on ventilators are unvaccinated.

WANTED WOMAN ARRESTED FOR METH POSSESSION

(Richmond, IN)--A Richmond woman who failed to show up for a court hearing on Monday was taken into custody Tuesday and now faces a more serious charge.  31-year-old Tomycia Allen had failed to show after being arrested for criminal trespass last month.  When she was found Tuesday in the 100 block of Richmond Avenue, she was allegedly in possession of an undisclosed amount of methamphetamine.  She was in the Wayne County Jail Wednesday morning.

WEIR DAM TO BE REMOVED

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond Common Council Monday night heard about plans to remove the Weir Dam.  If you don’t know it by name, that’s the ten-foot dam that creates a sort of waterfall in the Whitewater Gorge near the swinging foot bridge.  Beth Fields with the city told Council MOnday night that it would mean more use of the river.  "Part of that includes the revealing of our water and utilizing our water.  Removing that dam is one step in that large process," Fields said.  An ordinance to cover the $165,000 cost of removal through grant money claims it will result in increased safety, increased water quality, and better fish passage.

HILL'S PET NUTRITION ANNOUNCES EXPANSION

(Richmond, IN)--A big expansion for a Richmond manufacturer was announced Monday by the Economic Development Corporation of Wayne County.  Hill’s Pet Nutrition in investing $17.5 million to expand production capacity at their location on Union Pike.  It will happen in two phases.  The first phase transitions the company to seven-day-a-week operation and creates 44 new jobs.  That phase will be complete early next year.  The second phase adds a packaging line and creates 20 new jobs.  A $200,000 EDIT grant will help with the expansion.

CITY PASSES 2022 BUDGET, SALARY ORDINANCES

(Richmond, IN)--The budget is set for the city of Richmond for next year.  Last night, Richmond Common Council unanimously approved several ordinances that set the budget for 2022 as well as the salaries of city employees including police and firefighters.  Also included were salaries for elected officials.  The city’s budget for 2022 totals about $53 million.

MONDAY-TO-MONDAY COVID-19 CASES IN WAYNE COUNTY DROP

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County’s Monday-to-Monday Covid-19 case total is the lowest it’s been in several weeks.  Wayne County has reported 276 cases since last Monday.  It’s the first time since the last week of August that the weekly case total has dropped.  And, it’s less than half of the weekly total that was reported in the first week of last month.  Reid Health had 45 Covid-19 patients Monday morning.  That’s a big drop from the 76 patients that were there a week ago.  All ten patients in the ICU Monday and all seven patients on ventilators are unvaccinated.

MAN TO BE SENTENCED MONDAY FOR ROLE IN BOY'S PREBLE COUNTY DEATH

(Hamilton, OH)--Monday is the day that James Hamilton will be sentenced.  Hamilton took part in the disposing of the body of six-year-old James Hutchinson after the boy’s mother killed him at Rush Run in Preble County early this year.  Hamilton also admitted to abusing James and his siblings shortly before his death.  Hamilton faces up to 19 years in prison.  The boy’s mother was recently sentenced to life.

WAYNE COUNTY SEES DRASTIC DROP IN PEOPLE BEING VACCINATED

(Wayne County, IN)--There’s been a big drop in the number of Wayne County residents who have become fully vaccinated in the last week.  Last week, 469 people became fully vaccinated.  This week, only 289 people can make that claim.  It’s a one-week drop of 62%.  There are now 27,253 fully vaccinated Wayne County residents.  That’s 41 percent of the population.  Wayne County reported 45 new cases Thursday.  That’s on par with daily averages this week.

MAN JAILED FOR SIX COUNTS OF CHILD MOLESTING

(Richmond, IN)--Five years of alleged sexual attacks against a young girl has a Richmond man in jail Friday morning facing six counts of child molesting.  32-year-old John Ashcraft was taken into custody Thursday.  According to court documents, the girl suffered abuse for a five-year period from age seven to 12.  Recently, she began marking a calendar with an “R” for rape each time an assault occurred.  There were 26 R’s on the calendar.  Ashcraft denies the allegations.

MAN JAILED AFTER PANORAMIC APT. STANDOFF

(Centerville, IN)--The SWAT Team was called in to help take a man into custody at the Panoramic Apartments in Centerville Thursday afternoon.  30-year-old Charles Clayton was wanted for being a felon in possession of a firearm.  Clayton had been charged with dealing meth back in April.  After negotiations and a brief standoff, Clayton was taken into custody.  An undisclosed amount of methamphetamine was recovered.

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