Ohio News Briefs

Kroger mulls possible sale of Turkey Hill business unit

CINCINNATI (AP) — Kroger says it is exploring the possible sale of a business unit that produces ice cream and beverages.

The Cincinnati-based company says it has hired Goldman Sachs to evaluate a “potential sale” of the Turkey Hill business unit, which employs almost 800 people. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports Turkey Hill produces a variety of ice creams, milk and fruit drinks at its facility in Conestoga, Pennsylvania.

The Kroger Co. owns 38 food manufacturing plants — including 19 dairies — which produce the supermarket company’s portfolio of house brands.

The potential divestiture comes after Kroger announced last year that it planned to sell off its convenience store business.

Kroger Manufacturing official Erin Sharp says Turkey Hill’s products “have the potential for greater growth outside of our company.”

Veteran who spoke out about voter purge resigns as mayor

OAK HARBOR, Ohio (AP) — An Army veteran who found himself in the middle of a U.S. Supreme Court case about whether states can purge voters has resigned as mayor of a village in Ohio.

Joseph Helle (hehl-EE’) stepped down as Oak Harbor’s mayor after a complaint about his residence. Helle says he’s been staying with his fiancee in another city because of ongoing renovations at his home.

He says village council members asked for his resignation. One member says they were only looking into the issue of residence.

The Democrat is running for a state House seat this fall.

Helle spoke out about the legal fight over Ohio’s efforts to remove inactive voters from its rolls after he was removed while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Supreme Court sided with Ohio in June.

Police: Officer tased 11-year-old girl stealing from market

CINCINNATI (AP) — A Cincinnati police officer tased an 11-year-old girl who police say was stealing from a supermarket.

Police say the incident happened around 9:30 p.m. Monday at a Kroger in Cincinnati. Authorities say the officer suspected the girl was using a backpack to shoplift when he approached her. Police say the girl resisted and fled before she was tased.

The girl was taken to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and released to a guardian.

Police have charged the girl with theft and obstruction of justice.

Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac has opened an investigation. According to the department’s policy, Tasers can be used on people who are at least 7-years-old.

Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman says there should be a “complete investigation.”

Governor swears in new director of mental health services

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio’s governor has sworn in the new director for the state agency that oversees mental health services.

Gov. John Kasich administered the oath of office on Tuesday to Dr. Mark Hurst as director of the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Hurst replaces Tracy Plouck. She left the position of department director for an opportunity in the private sector.

Hurst had served as the department’s medical director since 2012. He joined the Ohio Department of Mental Health in 1993.

As medical director, the Zanesville native provided clinical leadership for the department. That included supervision of Ohio’s six regional psychiatric hospitals and all drug and alcohol recovery services in the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections.