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Published: Monday, October 30, 2017 @ 11:45 AM
Updated: Tuesday, October 31, 2017 @ 10:21 AM
— UPDATE @ 10:21 a.m. (Oct. 31)
The Harem has been ordered closed for 12 months after the judge granted a preliminary injunction. The local sheriff’s office will block off the parking lot.
An Ohio Investigative Unit enforcement agent detailed how he was propositioned by a dancer during an investigation of The Harem, according to testimony Monday during the resumption of an injunction hearing.
The undercover agent said a dancer offered to go to a more private area and perform a specific sex act that other smaller girls didn’t want to do, according to the agent.
The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office is asking Judge Dennis Adkins to grant an injunction declaring the business a public nuisance and closing it for a year after a 9-month investigation alleged several acts of drug sales and soliciting for prostitution.
During cross-examination, defense attorney Michael Murray noted that most of the drugs and prostitution charges were against four women and that a couple of them were terminated during the January-September 2017 time frame of the investigation.
Many of Murray’s questions to the agent were about whether he or the other undercover agent ever made The Harem’s management aware of the illegal activity.
The prosecution rested just before 11 a.m. Monday. The defense called its first witness — Buckeye Association of Club Executives executive director Greg Flaig — at 11:20 a.m.
Over a defense objection, Adkins said he would give judicial notice to the criminal indictment against the club’s personnel. Adkins also denied a defense motion for a directed verdict in favor of the club.
Heck’s office said criminal activity at the business at 5825 North Dixie Drive in Harrison Twp. between January and September 2017 included prostitution, drug trafficking and trading of food stamps for drugs or sex.
Prosecutors said undercover agents witnessed multiple liquor violations, prostitution, and felony drug trafficking, including marijuana, methamphetamines, heroin, cocaine, fentanyl, carfentanil and Oxycodone.
Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018 @ 12:53 PM
The former Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office captain charged with misdemeanor assault for pepper-spraying an inmate in a restraint chair had her trial pushed back until May 29.
A previously unscheduled hearing in Dayton Municipal Court was held Feb. 12 in which Judith Sealey’s trial was continued from March 22.
Sealey, a sergeant in November 2015, is accused of pepper spraying Montgomery County Jail inmate Amber Swink, who was strapped in seven-point harness and who had already been sprayed once before that. The county settled a federal lawsuit with Swink and her attorney for $375,000.
Also, Judge Christopher Roberts recused himself from hearing the case which will prompt the appointing of a visiting judge. No visiting judge has been named, according to the docket.
Roberts wrote that he “maintains professional relationships with jail command staff and other deputies of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office,” according to court documents. “Due to the potential for conflict or claims of bias resulting from these relationships, recusal is necessary.”
Sealey did not appear in court in a December hearing, but defense attorney Anthony VanNoy and Cincinnati Prosecutor’s Office assistant Natalia Harris met with Roberts before that pretrial hearing.
The case is being handled by the Cincinnati Prosecutor’s Office because Dayton City Prosecutor Stephanie Cook — a member of a Montgomery County Jail oversight committee — said it would be seen as a potential conflict of interest for her office to try the case.
Sealey, who took medical disability retirement, has pleaded not guilty to the charge.
VanNoy did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment. Harris has said she would not comment about an open case.
A Montgomery County grand jury in 2017 declined to indict Sealey on felony charges and findings of a federal probe into this incident and other jail issues have not been announced.
Video of the pepper-spraying came to light months after the incident when Swink’s attorney, Douglas Brannon, posted it on his website.
The video spurred the lawsuit, the ongoing federal probe, the misdemeanor criminal charge against Sealey, and contributed to calls for oversight of jail operations.
Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018 @ 12:19 PM
DAYTON — A sneaky new scam involving tax refunds is growing, and it means you need to keep a close eye on your bank account.
There are several variations of the scam: unexpected refund deposits to your bank account using compromised bank routing information, suspicious paper checks coming in the mail and, in one case reported in Maryland, it appeared a fraudulent refund check had been deposited using a smartphone.
According to the IRS, the victim will then receive a call or recorded message saying they need to return the funds to a collection agency-which is actually the scam account.
If you pay the scammers, you will get a double whammy hit to your bank account when the IRS or your bank realize that the deposit was bogus and withdraws the funds.
The number of victims jumped from a few hundred to a few thousand in just days, after more tax practitioner data breaches, according to the IRS.
The IRS has these recommendations to avoid getting scammed:
If you notice a suspicious deposit, contact your bank to have the money returned to the IRS and call the IRS at 800-829-1040.
If you receive a paper check, write “void” in the endorsement field on the back and return it to the location printed on the check.
Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018 @ 11:49 AM
MIDDLETOWN — Two Middletown High School students were charged with disorderly conduct after a disturbance Friday in the school that caused a lockdowns at multiple schools, Middletown police said.
After the fight, someone in the crowd yelled: “He’s probably going to get a gun,” according to Maj. Scott Reeve from the Middletown Division of Police.
But police don’t believe anyone “threatened” to get a gun, Reeve said.
The alleged comment was reported by students to school officials, who immediately informed police, causing a rush to the school. Police then closed down the school’s doors, keeping anyone from leaving or coming in, Reeve said.
Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018 @ 11:10 AM
MIDDLETOWN — Middletown police rarely respond to call for service at a Middletown bar where a man was punched and later died Saturday, according to police reports.
Police have been called to Old Crow Bar, 1217 Jackson Lane, three times this year, for reports of a bad check, possible OVI arrest and for Saturday’s incident.
John W. Fugate, 46, a musician who booked bands at the Old Crow Bar, died Saturday morning after an incident in the Middletown bar, according to Middletown police and friends.
Fugate allegedly was punched while he was standing on stage around 1 a.m. Saturday, said Maj. Scott Reeve from the Middletown Division of Police. Fugate fell backward off the stage and hit his head on the concrete floor, Reeve said. He was unconscious when police arrived at 1:18 a.m., Reeve said. Fugate was transported to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, where he died Saturday, police said.
Reeve said police know who allegedly punched Fugate, but no charges have been filed. After the investigation is complete, the facts will be presented to the Butler County Grand Jury for consideration, Reeve said.
In 2017, police responded to the bar once for a possible drunk patron on Sept. 15, according to police reports.
Police were called to the bar four times in 2016 for reports of domestic dispute, drugs, public disturbance and breaking and entering.
Reeve said Old Crow has changed management a few times, and while it was “a problem at times,” it’s not causing a nuisance now.
Fugate’s autopsy was performed by the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office, but results have not been released, officials said.