Ohio News Briefs

Cousin: Sailor killed in crash near Japan was to retire soon

ELYRIA, Ohio (AP) — The cousin of a U.S. Navy sailor from Ohio says the 37-year-old man was three months shy of retiring when he was killed this weekend in a collision between a destroyer and a container ship off Japan.

Fire Controlman 1st Class Gary Leo Rehm Jr. was among seven sailors killed aboard the USS Fitzgerald on Saturday. He was from Elyria, roughly 25 miles west of Cleveland.

Brad Rehm tells The Chronicle-Telegram in Elyria that word of his cousin’s death was shocking.

Gary Rehm is survived by his wife, Erin.

He was part of a crew of nearly 300 aboard the destroyer when a Philippine-flagged container ship collided with it early Saturday. Authorities declined to speculate on a cause.

A delay in reporting the collision is under investigation.

Ohio gas prices drop again, to average of $2.12 for regular

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Gas prices around Ohio have dipped further ahead of the official start of summer this week.

The state average for a gallon of regular fuel was about $2.12 in Monday’s survey from auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. That’s significantly lower than the average of $2.23 last week and $2.52 a year ago.

The national average was higher than the state’s at $2.29 on Monday. That is down about a nickel compared with the prices a week ago and at this time last year.

AAA says high gasoline production, lower demand and an unexpected buildup of crude oil contributed to decreasing prices earlier in June, but it predicted that drivers won’t see prices fall much lower.

Man killed by falling tree limb

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A man has been killed by a tree limb in Ohio after trying to cut it down with a chain saw.

Police say the man was cutting the limb at a Columbus home Sunday afternoon. Police Sgt. Patrick Shaffer says the man was likely killed on impact after a limb swung and hit his head from behind.

Officers and paramedics were called to the scene around 1 p.m., where the man was pronounced dead.

Family members tell WCMH-TV the man was Ronnie Booker.

Boy, 15, stabbed in confrontation dies at NE Ohio hospital

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say a 15-year-old boy died after being stabbed during a confrontation in northeastern Ohio.

Police were called to a neighborhood southwest of downtown Akron and found the teen stabbed on Sunday evening. He was taken to a hospital, where he died.

Akron police and the medical examiner didn’t immediately release his name or any details about the altercation that led to his death, including whether a suspect has been identified. The stabbing remained under investigation Monday as a homicide.

3 injured after explosion in Ohio apartment building

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Officials say three people were hospitalized with minor injuries after an explosion at an Ohio apartment building.

Fire Battalion Chief Steve Martin says the explosion blew out a garage door, another door and a window Sunday at a six-unit complex in northeast Columbus. Martin says there was very little fire due to the explosion.

Two adults and one juvenile were injured.

The building has since been evacuated, and Martin says there is structural damage. He says it is not safe to live in.

Columbia Gas has issued a statement saying they are investigating the explosion. The company says so far there has been no conclusion as to whether natural gas was involved.

The company says it is inspecting all of their lines in the neighborhood.

Proposal expands placing low-level offenders in community

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The current version of the Ohio budget expands a program allowing low-level felony offenders to remain in their communities under supervision without going to prison.

At issue are efforts to ensure public safety while reducing the number of people sent to prison.

The Ohio Senate’s two-year budget proposal would spend $19 million next year on grants to counties to provide treatment and supervision options to help fight opioid addiction.

The proposal would spend $39 million in 2019 when fifth-degree felons from Ohio’s ten largest counties would no longer be eligible for prison.

Offenders are typically guilty of drug possession or theft. People convicted of violent crimes or sex offenses don’t participate.

Ohio has just over 50,000 inmates, down from 51,000 a year ago.

Small-plane pilot killed by propeller during start-up

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say an Ohio man has been killed after being struck by the propeller of his plane after starting its engine.

The state Highway Patrol says 79-year-old Larry Hoover was struck by the propeller of the single-engine plane around 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Wynkoop Airport near Mount Vernon in Knox County. Hoover was from Millersport in Fairfield County.

The airport is about 45 miles northeast of downtown Columbus.

The patrol says Hoover was flown to Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus where he was pronounced dead shortly before 6 p.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating along with the Highway Patrol and Knox County Sheriff’s Office.