Ohio News Briefs


Ohio man tired of renting to addicts torches trailer home

CHILLICOTHE, Ohio (AP) — A man has told authorities he set a vacant trailer home on fire in southern Ohio because he’s tired of renting to drug addicts.

The Chillicothe Gazette reports Ross County sheriff’s deputies arrived at property owned by 41-year-old Robert Violette last week and found him attempting to extinguish a fire in one of his trailers with a garden hose.

An incident report says Violette told deputies he wanted to torch all the trailers on his property because of drug-addicted tenants.

A township fire department put out the blaze and issued Violette a warning.

Violette didn’t return the newspaper’s calls for comment.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine filed a lawsuit in Ross County in May against five drugmakers accusing them of helping to create the region’s opioid epidemic.

2 men struck and killed outside truck on Ohio interstate

ASHLAND, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say two men standing outside of a disabled semitrailer along an Ohio interstate have been struck and killed by a motorist who told investigators he’d fallen asleep at the wheel.

The state Highway Patrol has identified the men killed Tuesday afternoon on Interstate 71 north in Ashland County as 44-year-old Steven Garceau, of Champlain, New York, and 28-year-old Dennis McKenzie Jr., of Polk, Ohio. The patrol says the men appeared to have been working on the semi when they were killed.

The patrol says the semi had been pulling an oversized load and was parked well off the interstate onto the berm. The car’s driver told investigators he’d fallen asleep and didn’t realize he’d hit the men.

No charges have been filed yet against the motorist.

Man crushed to death by heavy equipment at Ohio factory

FRANKLIN, Ohio (AP) — A 28-year-old man has been crushed to death after a piece of heavy equipment fell on him at a southwest Ohio factory.

Authorities say Douglas Mescher, of Lebanon, was killed Tuesday at Walther Engineering and Manufacturing, a vehicle parts maker in Franklin where Mescher worked as a subcontractor.

Franklin is about 35 miles (56 kilometers) northeast of downtown Cincinnati.

A company spokesman declined to comment when contacted by the Dayton Daily News.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating Mescher’s death.

Icelandic airline announces nonstop service to Cleveland

CLEVELAND (AP) — An Icelandic airline has announced plans to start flights next year between Cleveland and Iceland’s capital city.

Officials from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport and Icelandair made the announcement Monday. Service is expected to start in May, and the airline said tickets are expected to be available soon.

Cleveland.com reports it will be the first trans-Atlantic flight originating from Cleveland since Delta canceled a London route in 2009.

Airport director Robert Kennedy says the flight represents a “big win” for the business community in Cleveland because it provides a link to Europe.

Woman claims she won $500K lottery; lottery says $500 prize

CLEVELAND (AP) — An Ohio woman claims to have won $500,000 on an Ohio Lottery scratch-off ticket, while the lottery says she won only the $500 she received.

Penelope Demetriades filed a claim against the lottery Monday in Ohio’s Court of Claims. The Northfield woman says she bought a ticket in September at a convenience store in Macedonia, about 24 miles (39 kilometers) southeast of Cleveland. She says a store employee said she won $500 and gave her that prize.

Demetriades says she later determined she won $500,000, but employees wouldn’t honor her ticket, saying it was destroyed or thrown.

She alleges breach of contract, among other things, and is seeking compensatory damages and a judgment that she won $500,000.

The lottery says investigators reconstructed the ticket, and it was a $500 winner.

Police: Shooting at party targeted; related to drug rings

CINCINNATI (AP) — Police say the shooting at a gender reveal party in suburban Cincinnati where one woman was killed and eight people were wounded was targeted and related to drug rings.

Colerain Township police spokesman James Love says investigators have found multiple connections between those who attended the party and three drug rings. He also says detectives have met with resistance from victims and witnesses.

Twenty-two-year-old Autum Garrett of Andrews, Indiana, was killed July 8 during what was supposed to be a pregnant woman’s gender reveal party. Garrett’s husband and their two children were among those wounded.

Authorities have said a 21-year-old woman who claimed she lost her child after being shot wasn’t pregnant.

Police say the continuing investigation will be lengthy and thorough, and they expect to make multiple arrests.

Man living in US illegally pleads guilty in deadly crash

OREGON, Ohio (AP) — A man who was living in the U.S. illegally has pleaded guilty in alcohol-related crash that killed three people in Ohio.

Prosecutors say Alejandro Ramirez-Jaramillo was drunk when he drove through a stop sign in March and killed a couple and their adult daughter near Toledo.

A Lucas County judge on Tuesday sentenced the 27-year-old Asheboro, North Carolina, man to 21 years in prison after he pleaded to guilty aggravated vehicular homicide.

A message seeking comment was left with his attorney.

The crash just east of Toledo killed Robin and Barbara Shellhammer, of Oregon, and their daughter, Whitney Meinke, of Curtice.

Court records show Ramirez-Jaramillo was being held on an immigration detainer after his arrest.

Young Ohio man among 10 sailors missing after ship collision

CABLE, Ohio (AP) — A young Ohio man engaged to be married next year is among 10 U.S. sailors missing since the USS John McCain collided with an oil tanker off the coast of Singapore.

Jacob Drake is 21 and graduated from Triad High School. His relatives gathered Tuesday at their home in Cable, a rural village 50 miles west of Columbus.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the family has been told Drake is among the missing but is waiting for further word from the Navy.

Drake’s 20-year-old fiancee, Megan Partlow, says she wants “him to be safe.” She says she last heard from him by text Sunday.

Boston Gregg graduated with Drake and says everyone he knows is praying for him.

The Navy says it’ll keep searching for the sailors until the probability of discovering them “is exhausted.”