Ohio News Briefs

Backers say there’s still time to save Ohio’s nuclear plants

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A group of community leaders backed by the owner of Ohio’s two nuclear plants say there’s still time to save the plants from closing.

But the newly formed coalition called the Ohio Clean Energy Jobs Alliance also says time is running out.

They’re trying to convince state lawmakers to come up with a lifeline for the two plants that produce 14 percent of Ohio’s electricity.

So far, the Republican-led legislature has been resistant to providing any aid.

FirstEnergy Solutions has said it plans to close the two nuclear plants by 2021 unless the government helps ease the high costs of operating them.

Backers of the plants say they have only eight or nine months to persuade state lawmakers to help before final decisions about the plants must be made.

Ohio Republican candidate protests state GOP campaign mailer

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A Republican candidate for the Ohio Legislature is protesting a mailer from the state GOP party, calling it inaccurate and not reflecting his values as a candidate.

Erik Yassenoff is competing against Democrat Allison Russo in the 24th House district. The Columbus Dispatch reports the state GOP sent a mailer supporting Yassenoff that attempts to link the first-time candidate Russo to past job losses and state budget struggles.

Yassenoff sent a letter to Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken Wednesday protesting the mailer’s content — calling it inaccurate and distracting from his “positive, policy-focused campaign.”

Party spokesman Blaine Kelly says “the mailer is fair and we stand by it.”

Democratic candidate for the 6th District Phil Robinson says an identical mailer with his name on it was also sent out.

Ohio Supreme Court rejects killer’s request for DNA testing

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A judge said additional DNA testing wouldn’t change the outcome of a condemned killer’s conviction and death sentence, and the Ohio Supreme Court has agreed.

At issue was testing requested by death row inmate Melvin Bonnell, sentenced to die for killing Robert Bunner in Cleveland in 1987.

Attorneys for the 61-year-old Bonnell argue that if DNA testing of his clothes failed to detect the victim’s blood it would rule him out as a suspect.

But the court noted in Wednesday’s decision that Bonnell already unsuccessfully argued that point at trial because the state said then the victim’s blood was not on the jacket.

The court also said other evidence against Bonnell was overwhelming, including eyewitness identification of him as the shooter.

Bonnell’s attorneys called the decision disappointing.

Man charged in crash that killed wife of 4 months

HAMILTON, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio man who police say was drunk and had fentanyl in his system when the car he was driving crashed and killed his wife of four months has been charged with aggravated vehicular homicide.

A grand jury in Hamilton on Wednesday also indicted 38-year-old Kenneth Cyrek, of Trenton, on a vehicular manslaughter charge in the death of 26-year-old Kayla Cyrek. She was a passenger in the car that crashed Aug. 4.

Fairfield Township police say the vehicle veered off the road and struck a metal utility pole.

Police said tests indicated Kenneth Cyrek’s blood-alcohol level was over the legal limit and he had fentanyl in his system. Authorities say he also was driving under a license suspension.

Butler County court records on Thursday didn’t show an attorney for Cyrek.