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Paid suspension for local teacher accused in fatal hit-and-run crash

Published: Monday, November 20, 2017 @ 5:41 PM
Updated: Tuesday, November 21, 2017 @ 6:52 AM

Kristine Baggs was arraigned in Clark County Common Pleas Court.

UPDATE @ 1:00p.m. (Nov. 22):

Kristine Baggs, a Kenton Ridge High School science teacher, has been put on paid administrative suspension according to Northeastern School District officials Wednesday after making her first court appearance.

Baggs is facing charges related to a deadly hit and run pedestrian accident that killed Lawrence Mason, 45, of Medway, in September 2016.

The Ohio Attorney General prosecutor on the case against Baggs spoke about the charges filed against the educator in court Wednesday. 

Paid suspension for local teacher accused in fatal hit-and-run crash

“These are very serious charges,” prosecutor Leigh Bayer said. 

She asked the court to handle Kristine Baggs’ case like the court has handled similar cases in Clark County. 

"There was a victim who died as a result of being hit by a car driven by Ms. Baggs," Bayer said in court. "And the car was hidden from view several days afterward." 

She also asked that Baggs not be allowed in any establishment that serves alcohol as a condition of her bond. 

Baggs doesn’t admit to the allegations, her defense attorney Richard Mayhall said in court. He asked the court to release her on her own recognizance bond. 

“She has been employed as a teacher in Clark County for the last 15 years,” Mayhall said. “She’s married, she has two children, she has no prior record. Since this incident occurred nearly 15 months ago, she has had no other allegations.” 

A magistrate set Baggs’ bond at $100,000. 

UPDATE @ 12:00 p.m. (Nov. 22):

Kristine Baggs, a Kenton Ridge High School science teacher, has been put on paid administrative suspension according to Northeastern School District officials Wednesday.

Baggs made her first court appearance Wednesday morning on charges related to a deadly hit and run pedestrian accident that killed Lawrence Mason, 45, of Medway, in September 2016.

UPDATE @ 10:57 a.m. (Nov. 22):

Kristine M. Baggs appeared in court Wednesday morning for her arraignment.

Baggs pleaded not guilty and bond was set at $100,000.

UPDATE @ 6:53 a.m. (Nov. 21)

Our newsroom is working to gather more information on the arrest of Kristine M. Baggs, 40, of Springfield. She was booked into Clark County Jail Monday afternoon around 5 p.m. 

Kristine Baggs (Contributed Photo)

She is listed as a teacher in family and consumer science at Kenton Ridge High School. She made $52,788 in 2016, according to the Dayton Daily News and Springfield News-Sun Payroll Project.

EARLIER REPORT (Nov. 20)

A Northeastern School District teacher has been indicted in a deadly hit and run pedestrian accident that killed a man standing on North Tecumseh Road in Bethel Twp. last year.

Kristine Baggs is charged with failure to stop after an accident, tampering with evidence and two counts of vehicular manslaughter, according to the Clark County Common Pleas Court website. 

Lawrence J. Mason, 45, of Medway was struck and killed by a silver 2015 Dodge Durango in September 2016, according to an Ohio State Highway Patrol crash report. The vehicle and driver left the scene, according to investigators.

The vehicle was later traced to the Baggs family, and Mason’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit.

Baggs was arrested Monday afternoon, more than a year after the deadly accident.

"I'm hoping the family may have some justice for their loved one with Ms. Baggs going to jail for this indictment and charges," said Lt. Brian Aller, commander of the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Springfield post. 

Kristine Baggs is a teacher in the Northeastern School District, Superintendent John Kronour said. 

Kronour said he couldn't comment until he knows more about the situation. 

She hasn't been suspended or put on leave at this time. 

"Not yet, but I anticipate that might be forthcoming," Kronour said.

Man caught entering Manchester Inn by K-9s training fined $100

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 5:43 PM


            Nicholas Tsakeris, 18, pleaded guilty to criminal trespass and was fined $100 and court costs Friday morning in Middletown Municipal Court.
Nicholas Tsakeris, 18, pleaded guilty to criminal trespass and was fined $100 and court costs Friday morning in Middletown Municipal Court.

A Middletown man pleaded guilty to criminal trespass and was fined $100 and court costs for breaking and entering a closed downtown hotel.

Nicholas Tsakeris, 18, also was told Friday morning to stay away from the Manchester Inn, which closed seven years ago, by Middletown Municipal Court Judge James Sherron.

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Tsakeris and a 17-year-old boy allegedly entered the Manchester Inn on Wednesday afternoon. They were seen entering the hotel by Middletown’s police chief and two new city council members who were having lunch Wednesday on the fourth floor of the City Building.

Chief Rodney Muterspaw, who was meeting with council members Joe Mulligan and Ami Vitori, called police dispatch to report the suspicious activity at the hotel.

As the two suspects, Tsakeris and a juvenile, were illegally trying to enter the Manchester Inn, the police department’s K-9 team was training along with eight agencies of the Southwest Regional K-9 Training Team at the city’s K-9 training center near the Middletown Regional Airport.

“Bad timing,” Muterspaw said with a laugh. “Real bad.”

Middletown’s K-9 officers Bear, Chase and Koda, along with dogs from the other police agencies, entered the building, said officer Ryan Morgan, Chase’s handler. Morgan said there were 11 dogs stationed in and around the Manchester Inn.

“Dogs were barking everywhere,” Morgan said.

While Morgan and Chase were on the second floor, Chase, a 4-year-old German shepherd, indicated he smelled human scent, Morgan said. When they found the subjects hiding in a hotel room, Chase “showed force” and the subjects quickly surrendered, he said.

The incident showed there is “no better training than real-life scenarios,” Morgan said.

Deputies: Florida man tries to order burrito from bank, gets charged with DUI

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 5:28 PM

Authorities arrested Douglas Jon Francisco, 28, on Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2018.
Hernando County Sheriff's Office
Authorities arrested Douglas Jon Francisco, 28, on Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2018.(Hernando County Sheriff's Office)

Police in Florida arrested a 28-year-old man on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol after authorities said he attempted to order a burrito from a Bank of America after confusing it for a Taco Bell, according to multiple reports.

>> Read more trending news

Records from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office show authorities arrested Douglas Jon Francisco, 28, on Wednesday.

The manager of the Bank of America branch on Mariner Boulevard in Spring Hill, Martin Claussen, called authorities Wednesday afternoon after he said he found a blue Hyundai in the bank’s drive-up bank lane with a man who appeared to be passed out inside, WTSP reported.

Claussen said he had to bang on the car window several times before Francisco awoke, according to the Tampa Bay Times. When Francisco saw the bank manager, deputies said he tried to order a burrito.

>> Read more Floridoh! stories 

Claussen told Francisco that he was not at a Taco Bell and Francisco drove the Hyundai to the bank’s front parking lot, according to the Times. Deputies said he was in the front parking lot, the car still idling, when authorities arrived.

In an arrest report, a deputy wrote that Francisco “made several statements that were differing from reality” and denied asking Claussen for a burrito. Deputies said his responses during a field sobriety test “were slow in a way that was consistent with someone on prescription narcotics,” WTSP reported. He was given a drug test, the results of which were pending.

During a search of the Hyundai, deputies said they found prescription medication that had been made out in Francisco’s name, according to the Times.

Jail records show Francisco was booked into the Hernando County Detention Center around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday and released Thursday afternoon on a $500 bond.

Indiana man charged with robbery with BB gun waives hearing

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:04 PM

He allegedly robbed a Middletown Rite Aid pharmacy of $280

An Indiana man charged with aggravated robbery waived his preliminary hearing on Friday afternoon in Middletown Municipal Court, and his case was bound over to the Butler County Grand Jury for consideration.

Brenden Parker, 27, of Aurora, Ind., was charged with aggravated robbery, a felony, and two misdemeanors (resisting arrest and obstructing official business) after he allegedly robbed a Middletown pharmacy on Jan. 10. Parker allegedly showed a female clerk a gun — that later was determined to be a BB gun — and demanded cash. He allegedly left the Rite Aid with about $280 in cash, according to Middletown police.

Brenden Parker, 27, of Aurora, Ind., was charged with aggravated robbery, a felony, and two misdemeanors, resisting arrest and obstructing official business, after he allegedly robbed a Middletown pharmacy on Jan. 10.(Staff Writer)

Parker appeared Friday with his court-appointed attorney, James Calhoun, before Municipal Court Judge James Sherron. Sherron kept Parker’s bond at $256,000 — $250,000 for aggravated robbery and $3,000 each for the misdemeanors.

At Parker’s arraignment last week, Sherron set the bond that high because of the “serious nature” of the charges, he said.

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Last week, during his arraignment, Parker seemed confused and disorientated while standing before Sherron. Middletown police said after Parker was arrested on Jan. 10 he was acting “strange,” so he was examined at Atrium Medical Center before he was transported to the city jail.

Police believe Parker may have family in the Middletown, though there didn’t appear to be any friends or relatives in the courtroom during his preliminary hearing. Franklin police said Parker was charged with petty theft there in 2009, and he was arrested two years later for a failure to appear.

Parker allegedly pulled out what the clerk thought was a black handgun and told the female clerk: “Give me the money in the cash register and I will not harm you,” according to the Middletown police report.

The cashier told Parker she couldn’t do that and he repeated: “I do not want to hurt you. Give me the money.”

During the foot pursuit that followed, a Middletown police officer deployed his taser, but the taser was ineffective because both probes missed the suspect, the report said. Once the subject was caught, he refused to be handcuffed and two “baton strikes” were used to “gain compliance” on him, the report said.

After he was apprehended, he was found to be in possession of the stolen money. Canine officer Bear found a black BB gun near where the suspect was located.

2 arrested in armed robbery at Springfield Verizon store

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:11 PM


            Anthony Dorone Edwards, 18, appeared in court Friday on charges relating to the Verizon Wireless store robbery on Thursday in Springfield. Jeff Guerini/Staff
Anthony Dorone Edwards, 18, appeared in court Friday on charges relating to the Verizon Wireless store robbery on Thursday in Springfield. Jeff Guerini/Staff

Two teenagers are now in custody and three others remain at large in connection with the armed robbery of a Springfield cell phone store.

Anthony Dorone Edwards, 18, of Springfield, was charged with aggravated robbery and carrying a concealed weapon. Javon Lashawn Reid, 18, of Dayton, also was charged with aggravated robbery.

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Both appeared in Clark County Municipal Court on Friday and pleaded not guilty. Their bonds were set at $100,000 each.

Five men with their faces covered and holding guns entered Verizon Wireless on North Bechtle Avenue about 10:20 a.m. Thursday, according to court records.

The men entered the store shortly after it opened and allegedly yelled for everyone to get down, court records say. They allegedly threatened to shoot people inside of the business and demanded money and items of value.

Two employees allegedly were taken to the stock room at gunpoint, according to court records, and the suspects took an unknown amount of merchandise and an undisclosed amount of money.

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The suspects left in a gold Chevy Impala and were last seen traveling down Ohio 4. An officer saw the vehicle some time later and chased it, according to court records, but then lost sight of it in the Dayton area.

Springfield police were later contacted by Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents who were observing a house in Trotwood. Three men arrived at the location, according to court records, and Edwards and Reid were taken into custody and the other got away.

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Edwards allegedly was found with stolen phones and a handgun, court records say, and Reid allegedly admitted to police he was involved in the robbery.

Police are actively looking for the other suspects.