OHIO ATTORNEY GENERAL-HOSPITALIZED
Ohio attorney general taken to Cincinnati hospital
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The office of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says he fell ill during a speaking engagement in Cincinnati and has been taken to a hospital to be evaluated.
A statement from the office on Friday said DeWine was taken to the Christ Hospital in Cincinnati as a precaution. No other details were immediately available.
The 67-year-old DeWine is a former U.S. senator and Ohio lieutenant governor. After losing his Senate seat to Democrat Sherrod Brown in 2006, the Republican DeWine ran for attorney general in 2010 and won.
One of Ohio's most publicly visible officials, DeWine has made causes of fighting human trafficking and prescription drug abuse.
Police: Ohio man walked into school, groped girl
AKRON, Ohio (AP) - Police in Ohio say a man walked into a middle school and lured a 12-year-old girl into an empty office, where he fondled her.
School officials say the man got into the Akron building Wednesday by walking through the front door as a vendor left. Police say the man took two laptop computers and two cameras before fondling the girl.
A school official tells the Akron Beacon Journal the front door can only be opened by a buzzer or from within. He says staff members and students know not to let anyone inside and that school officials will make sure that all visitors will be told that too.
Police say the 21-year-old Barberton man was charged with breaking and entering, criminal trespassing and gross sexual imposition.
2 Ohioans charged in sale of deadly heroin blend
CLEVELAND (AP) - Authorities in Cleveland say they have arrested two people accused of selling a lethal blend of heroin believed to have caused at least one fatal overdose and other suspected overdoses this week.
Prosecutors in Cuyahoga (KY-uh-HOH'-guh) County made the arrests Wednesday, shortly after the county medical examiner's office issued a public-health warning about the batch of deadly heroin laced with the powerful painkiller fentanyl.
The blend, known as "China White," has turned up recently in the Cleveland area, and authorities said it's still being sold.
Prosecutors are referring the cases to a grand jury.
It's been a bad week for heroin users in northeast Ohio.
The county medical examiner reported three suspected heroin deaths on Tuesday, and five non-fatal suspected heroin cases between Monday and Tuesday.
Libertarians await word on making Ohio's ballot
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Two Libertarian candidates for statewide office in Ohio are awaiting word from the state elections chief on whether they'll make the May 6 primary ballot.
A spokesman for Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted (HYOO'-sted) said Friday that Husted hadn't yet received a hearing officer's recommendations for resolving protests filed against gubernatorial candidate Charlie Earl and attorney general candidate Steven Linnabary.
Earl could draw votes from Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) as the governor faces a likely challenge from Democrat Ed FitzGerald this fall.
A protest seeking to disqualify Earl from the primary ballot claims signature-gatherers didn't follow proper rules and Democrats provided the candidate him help.
Earl's attorney has called the challenge an extension of Republican efforts to exclude third parties from Ohio's ballot.
Trial delayed for Ohio lawmaker charged with fraud
CINCINNATI (AP) - A southwest Ohio lawmaker charged with fraud and theft for allegedly misleading investors about a company's financial status and using their money for personal gain won't go on trial next month.
A judge in Cincinnati on Friday said the April 7 trial for Republican state Rep. Pete Beck will be rescheduled. A prosecutor said the state intends to merge the charges in two indictments against Beck. The 61-year-old lawmaker had denied all of the allegations.
He was set to go on trial next month on 16 counts. They include theft, securities fraud, making misrepresentations and selling securities in an insolvent company without full disclosure. Beck was indicted in February on 53 more counts including allegations that he lied to securities investigators.
Beck's attorney declined to comment after court.
PIZZA DELIVERER KILLED
Ohioan pleads not guilty in pizza-driver killing
CAMBRIDGE, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio man accused of raping and killing a pizza delivery driver has pleaded not guilty.
Thirty-two-year-old Adam Charles Burris appeared for an arraignment Friday in Guernsey County Common Pleas Court in Cambridge. The Cambridge man is charged with aggravated murder, rape, kidnapping, and aggravated robbery among other counts.
Authorities say 26-year-old Kayla Thompson of Cambridge, about 80 miles east of Columbus, didn't return from a delivery to Burris' home the day after Christmas. Burris was taken into custody and led authorities to Thompson's body near a boat ramp at Dillon State Park in neighboring Muskingum County.
Burris is being held with a $1 million bond. His attorney requested a competency evaluation before a trial date is set.
Attorneys have been ordered by the judge not to comment.
MOBILE HEROIN COOK
Police: Ohio man cooked heroin while driving
GIRARD, Ohio (AP) - A police officer said a northeast Ohio man admitted cooking heroin on a spoon while driving his car.
The (Youngstown) Vindicator reports that 25-year-old Aaron Repko pleaded not guilty Thursday to three misdemeanor drug charges in municipal court in Girard. He has yet to enter a plea to a felony charge of drug possession.
Vienna police said an officer stopped Repko Wednesday believing he was a drunken driver. The officer said he found a spoon on the passenger seat with a burned substance on it.
While being searched, Repko kept falling asleep and said he had injected heroin a short time earlier and had been cooking the drug while driving.
He's being held with a $20,000 bond.
Robber shot by Ohio police gets 11 years in prison
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A man who was shot by a police officer after trying to rob a central Ohio bank customer last year has been sentenced to 11 years in prison.
Two police officers said they witnessed 26-year-old Davis Cochrane hold up a man outside a Fifth Third Bank branch in north Columbus last August, threatening to shoot the customer if he didn't hand over money.
The officers chased Cochrane, and one of them shot him when he reached into his waistband. Police later discovered he was carrying a loaded handgun.
The Columbus Dispatch reports that Cochrane pleaded guilty in February to aggravated robbery.
Cochrane apologized to the judge and said he was ready to accept his punishment.
He is awaiting trial on a similar charge in northeast Ohio.
ONLINE ABDUCTION RUMOR
Central Ohio police debunk abduction email
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Authorities are working to debunk an email circulating in central Ohio that warns of attempted abductions at a popular mall.
Columbus police said an email going around last week warned that kidnappers nearly took someone's "co-worker's cousin" on a Saturday afternoon from the crowded Polaris Fashion Place mall.
Police Sgt. David Pelphrey tells The Columbus Dispatch that it's an urban myth, "right up there with Bigfoot."
Pelphrey, of the police division's sexual-assault squad, said he is not aware of any attempted kidnappings at any Columbus malls, stressing that they all have their own security and cameras throughout. Polaris mall officials also say they have no record or reports of attempted abductions.
Pelphrey said a similar email chain in 2008 falsely reported the attempted kidnappings of women with long hair at Wal-mart stores.
Ford shifting truck production from Mexico to Ohio
AVON LAKE, Ohio (AP) - Ford Motor Co. is announcing that it will build its Ford F-650 and F-750 trucks at its assembly plant west of Cleveland.
The automaker says it is shifting production from Mexico to its Avon Lake plant. Production will begin early next year.
The move announced Friday is part of a pledge Ford made with union leaders in 2011 to shift medium-duty truck production from Mexico.
The company says it's investing $168 million to make the change.
Ohio's jobless rate drops to 6.9 percent in Jan.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio officials say the state's unemployment rate dropped slightly in January to 6.9 percent.
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services said Friday that the seasonally adjusted rate in December was 7.1 percent, which was down from 7.2 percent in November.
The state's rate has been running slightly higher than the national rate, which was 6.6 percent in January.
The number of unemployed Ohio workers was 416,000 in December, or 11,000 fewer than in the previous month.
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