Ohio News Briefs

FBI questioning into Ohio House speaker prompts call from AG

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Republican Ohio Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Mike DeWine says he urged House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger to resign if he has committed any wrongdoing but was told that’s not the case.

DeWine says he called Rosenberger on Friday about a report that Rosenberger had hired an attorney after hearing the FBI was asking questions about the legislative leader.

Rosenberger, a Clarksville Republican, has endorsed DeWine for governor.

Rosenberger told the Dayton Daily News on Friday that he hired Columbus attorney David Axelrod “as a precautionary measure.” He said the FBI hasn’t subpoenaed him or told him he’s under investigation.

The bureau declined to confirm or deny any investigation.

The Daily News reported Tuesday that FBI questioning surrounds an August trip to Europe sponsored by the Republican electoral group GOPAC.

Ohio elections chief’s video explains redistricting plan

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio’s elections chief has released a video explaining a bipartisan constitutional amendment that would restructure Ohio’s process for drawing congressional maps.

The video is among educational tools Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted makes available online.

It explains a redistricting proposal on May 8 ballots that is aimed at curbing gerrymandering, the partisan manipulation of political boundaries that’s seen as a cause of partisanship, gridlock and incivility in Washington.

Ohio lawmakers voted Feb. 6 to send the new process to the ballot. It would limit how counties are split into multiple districts and require more support from the minority party to put a 10-year map in place.

If lawmakers couldn’t agree, an existing bipartisan commission would take over. If that failed, the majority party could pass a shorter-term map.

Drug distributor to donate 80,000 doses of overdose antidote

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio-based drug distributor facing lawsuits linked to the opioid crisis is donating more than 80,000 doses of an overdose antidote for use by emergency responders in several states.

The Columbus Dispatch reports Cardinal Health has started distributing the naloxone it pledged last year as part of its “Opioid Action Program.” It comes as low funds and increased demand have left naloxone in short supply among first responders across the country.

The doses will go to first responders in Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and Tennessee.

The Dublin-based company says the initial investment will be $10 million, and the program could expand to other states.

Cardinal Health is among several drugmakers facing lawsuits in connection with the opioid epidemic. The companies have all denied wrongdoing.

Woman who faked illness to raise money must repay $640,000

CLARINGTON, Ohio (AP) — A woman has been ordered to repay $640,000 that prosecutors say she defrauded from people in Ohio and West Virginia to get money to send to a man she met online.

The Ohio attorney general’s office says 67-year-old Darlene Baldwin also was sentenced to prison Monday. She pleaded guilty to theft, attempted fraud and attempted money laundering.

Investigators say the Clarington, Ohio, woman scammed the money from people using various false stories, including that she was sick or about to lose her home. She promised to repay them but instead directed the money overseas to a man she had met online.

Monroe County Prosecutor James Peters says the sentence ensures that Baldwin won’t be able to keep taking advantage of “those who placed their trust in her.”

Woman, boyfriend indicted in death of 4-year-old girl

EUCLID, Ohio (AP) — A northeast Ohio woman and her boyfriend have been indicted on aggravated murder and other charges in the death of the woman’s 4-year-old daughter.

A medical examiner says Aniya Day-Garrett died last month in Euclid from a stroke caused by blunt impacts to her head. She was also found to be malnourished.

A grand jury indicted her mother, Sierra Day, and the mother’s boyfriend, Deonte Lewis, on Monday.

An attorney for Day declined to comment. A message was left Monday for Lewis’ attorney.

The girl’s father says he suspected she was being abused and tried to get custody before her death. He has called for an investigation into the county’s child welfare agency.

An agency spokeswoman said investigators never found enough evidence to remove the girl from her home.