Ohio News Briefs

City councilor pushes for more electric scooter oversight

CINCINNATI (AP) — A few days after an electric scooter rider injured a pedestrian and fled the scene, a Cincinnati city councilor is pushing to make the scooter company responsible for such crashes.

California-based Bird Rides Inc. launched their scooter program in Cincinnati in July. Councilman David Mann said he has filed a motion requiring Bird to cover damages resulting from misuse of the scooters, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

That would include riding on sidewalks, running red lights or leaving scooters on their sides, a tripping hazard for pedestrians. Bird has already agreed to protect the city from lawsuits pertaining to such misuse.

“Because otherwise, they don’t have any real incentive to make sure this stuff doesn’t happen,” Mann said, citing the hit-and-run a few days prior.

The company said in a Wednesday statement that “we are constantly evolving our service, and want to work with the City to provide comprehensive rider education and technology tools that encourage the responsible and safe use of our sustainable transportation option.”

Nationwide, Bird’s ride-share model and lack of advance warning before launching have given city leaders headaches. Recently in Milwaukee, the company was required to remove its scooters until a regulatory framework was put in place.

Cincinnati set up a pilot program for Bird, but officials were blindsided by the company initially. Emails among city officials showed they were not aware ahead of time that Bird was coming and were unsure how to respond.

Mann said he is approaching the situation as a lawyer. “How can Bird be required to assume serious responsibility that will cause them to take serious steps? I’m all for having fun, but let’s understand that the sidewalks are a shared space,” he said.

The motion will be circulated among other city council members this week for discussion, Mann said.

30 days in jail for Ohio teen who brought gun to school

LORAIN, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio teen who brought a gun to school earlier this year for what he said was self-protection has been sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Eighteen-year-old Codsh’e Berger of Lorain pleaded guilty in July to carrying concealed weapons and illegal conveyance or possession of a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance in a school safety zone.

Lorain County Common Pleas Court Judge Chris Cook on Friday sentenced Berger to 12 months on each count, but told Berger he would grant judicial release after 30 days.

The Morning Journal reports that defense attorney Robert Forestall said Berger has no criminal record and had brought the gun to Lorain High School in May for protection.

Cook said the teen could have accomplished that without bringing a gun to school.

Ohio zoo to release sturgeon to restore fish in Lake Erie

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio zoo is planning to release thousands of young lake sturgeon in hopes of restoring a fish species in Lake Erie that is nearly extinct.

The Blade reports the Toledo Zoo will release about 3,000 juvenile sturgeon into the Maumee River on Oct. 6.

The river that runs through Toledo is one of Lake Erie’s largest tributaries.

The zoo says many people who come to the release party will be able to release the fish themselves.

The fish are expected be 6 to 7 inches long when they’re released.

Lake sturgeon can live 100 years or more. The species was once abundant in Lake Erie but nearly disappeared by the early 1900s because of overfishing.

Ohio troopers: semi-truck driver’s leg amputated after crash

VANDALIA, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio State Highway Patrol says a semi-truck driver’s leg had to be amputated after he was impaled by metal in a crash into an interstate ramp’s wall in western Ohio.

The Dayton Daily News reports that Patrol Sgt. Frank Simmons says the Interstate 70 roadway in Vandalia was wet from rain Saturday night and the driver was going too fast on the curved ramp.

Fire crews were unable to extract the driver from his cab, and an emergency surgical team was called to the scene.

The Daily News reports the driver was flown a local hospital, where he was in stable condition. His name wasn’t immediately made public.

Police: 25-year-old man killed in motorcycle crash

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Authorities in central Ohio have identified a man who was killed in a motorcycle crash.

Police say 25-year-old Bradley Bethel died Sunday morning in Columbus when he ran a stop sign, hit a curb and then struck a building. The Canal Winchester man was pronounced dead at the scene.

Witnesses say Bethel was travelling at a high rate of speed before he crashed.

Columbus police are investigating the crash.

Reports on alleged charity scam provided to Ohio AG, police

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Complaints alleging a rider in a popular cancer charity bike ride may have faked his illness and pocketed donations have been filed with police and the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.

The annual Pelotonia charity ride in central Ohio has collected more than $170 million over 10 years for cancer research at Ohio State University.

Pelotonia president and CEO Doug Ulman tells The Columbus Dispatch that the organization is aware of the allegations and will take appropriate action as it continues to gather information.

The newspaper says a report filed with Columbus police alleges the suspect received money from a garage-sale fund raiser two years ago that was never collected by Pelotonia, and used a $1,000 donation for living expenses.