Ohio News Briefs

ACLU lawyer calls county-wide homeless camp ban ‘troubling’

CINCINNATI (AP) — A member of a civil rights group says the scope of an order banning homeless encampments throughout a southwest Ohio county is “troubling.”

The ACLU of Ohio’s Joe Mead says he’s never heard of a county prosecutor arguing that homeless people are a nuisance in all public spaces. He says nuisance cases typically concern specific locations.

A judge on Thursday expanded an order prohibiting encampments in downtown Cincinnati to all of Hamilton County.

Mead calls the order unusual and says evidence he’s seen doesn’t support a ban throughout the county.

A national homeless advocate says cities across the country are zeroing in on homeless camps. Officials on Friday will order about 20 people to leave an encampment in northern Massachusetts, citing health and safety concerns.

Companies to extend broadband internet access in rural Ohio

CANTON, Ohio (AP) — Microsoft Corp. and an Ohio-based provider of telecommunications services have announced an agreement to extend broadband internet access to 110,000 unserved people in rural Ohio over the next four years.

Microsoft and Canton-based Agile Networks announced the agreement this week. They say it will help address a need for reliable broadband access in rural Ohio and provide access to digital advances in agriculture, telemedicine, and education.

Officials say the project also will support public-safety functions, including hospitals.

The project will use a mix of technologies, including the unused broadcast frequencies between TV channels known as TV white spaces.

The project is part of the Microsoft Airband Initiative. Microsoft says that initiative aims to extend broadband access to 2 million unserved people in rural America by 2022.

Family of slain Ohio man sues retailer that sold killer gun

WOOSTER, Ohio (AP) — The family of a man fatally shot with a black-powder revolver has sued the retailer that sold the weapon saying the killer’s violent past should have precluded the sale.

The Wooster Daily Record reports the estate of 21-year-old Bryan Galliher filed the lawsuit against Cabela’s and its parent company, Bass Pro Group LLC, on Tuesday in northeast Ohio’s Wayne County.

The lawsuit claims that Cabela’s should never have sold the replica of an antique firearm to Paul Claren, who used it to kill his Orrville neighbor in August 2016. Galliher testified at trial that the shooting was an accident. He was convicted of aggravated murder last August.

A detective testified that purchases of black powder guns don’t require federal background checks.

Bass Pro Group didn’t respond to messages seeking comment.

Newborn boy found inside toilet at Ohio Burger King

CHILLICOTHE, Ohio (AP) — Police say a newborn baby boy found inside a toilet at an Ohio Burger King is expected to survive.

The Chillicothe Gazette reports authorities found the baby while responding to a report about a 26-year-old man passed out in a vehicle at a Burger King in the southern Ohio city of Chillicothe last week.

The caller said a woman who was with the man had gone into the restaurant’s bathroom. Police say they found the 26-year-old woman sitting on the toilet with a baggie of suspected heroin on the floor beside her.

A medic who responded to the call looked inside the toilet and found the baby. The woman told investigators she thought she’d miscarried.

The baby was taken to a hospital.

Both the man and woman face criminal charges.

Ohio officer wounded, man killed during police confrontation

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say a man who emerged from a hotel room in Ohio’s capital city and fired shots at police has been killed and an officer has been slightly wounded.

The 28-year-old man fatally shot Thursday afternoon in north Columbus hasn’t been identified. Columbus police say one of the five officers who responded to the hotel received a graze wound to the leg and received treatment at a hospital.

A Columbus police spokesman says investigators are reviewing body camera footage to determine which officers fired shots.

Police went to the hotel after receiving a report of a fight involving a gun. Sgt. Rich Weiner says a witness told investigators the man fired at officers after stepping out of a room.

Ohio man shot be police officer acquitted of charges

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Felony charges have been dropped against one man while a jury has acquitted his brother of similar charges filed after an Ohio police officer shot them multiple times from behind on a busy city street.

WKYC-TV reports that authorities accused 24-year-old Jamon Pruiett and Latrent Redrick of threatening nightclub patrons and police last October before Akron officer John Turnure shot each man six times. Defense attorney Terry Gilbert disputes that account, saying surveillance camera footage doesn’t show them threatening anyone.

Prosecutors dropped felonious assault charges against Redrick before trial last week. He pleaded no contest to misdemeanor inducing panic at trial.

Pruiett, who fired one round after being shot, was acquitted Thursday of felonious assault.

Akron Police Chief Kenneth Ball said in a statement that Pruiett should have been convicted.