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Daughter of man on trial in Hamilton firefighter death testifies

Published: Wednesday, November 08, 2017 @ 1:27 PM
Updated: Thursday, November 09, 2017 @ 2:06 PM

Day 2 of testimony in Hamilton Arson Trial

The daughter of a man on trial for arson and the murder of a Hamilton firefighter testified today that she noticed things missing from her parent’s home before they left on a trip to Las Vegas.

Lester Parker, 67, and his nephew, William “Billy” Tucker, 46, are both charged with arson and murder in the fire at Parker’s Pater Avenue home that killed firefighter Patrick Wolterman on Dec. 28, 2015.

MORE: Daughter told police family may have been part of fatal Hamilton arson

Prosecutors say Parker was “under water” financially in the winter of 2015 and hatched a plan to burn the house and collect insurance money. His nephew, they said, agreed to light the fire for payment in pills.

Cheryl Sullivan, Parker’s daughter, testified Wednesday during the third day of the trial.

Sullivan drove her parents to the airport on Dec. 27, 2015, for the couple’s trip to Las Vegas.

She testified that she noticed things missing from the house that had been there on Christmas Eve.

“Some things were moved around, some things not where they were supposed to be,” Sullivan said, adding that angel figurines had replaced family photos in the living room and a “butler” statue was gone.

Prosecutor: Hamilton man planned to burn home for insurance money

Prosecutors say Parker packed up items he held dear, including pictures of his two daughters, and removed them from the house before the fire.

Sullivan testified that her father handed her four envelopes with bills in them, including the mortgage and insurance, and told her to “hold them.”

Before boarding the plane, Sullivan said her father called her and told her: “The important papers are in the garage if something happens.”

After the fire, Sullivan said she called her father in Las Vegas. He said he couldn’t comeback right away because it would be too expensive, she testified.

Weeks later, when her parents moved to another home in Hamilton, Sullivan said she found a bag that her parents had taken to Las Vegas and in it were several framed family photos, including those that she and her sister had noticed missing from the Pater Avenue home’s living room.

MORE: Owners of home where Hamilton firefighter died refused to discuss insurance claim

“He (Parker) said they had been out in the garage and the detectives said he could get them when he was over there with them,” Sullivan said.

During cross examination by the defense, Sullivan said it was not unusual for her mother to move things around because she liked to clean.

Parker’s attorney David Washington asked her if she was aware the angel figurines that had replaced the photos were Christmas gifts from Parker to his wife. Cheryl said she was not aware.

The Parkers’ older daughter is expected to testify this afternoon.

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Spring 2018: What’s the difference between meteorological spring and astronomical spring?

Published: Friday, March 02, 2018 @ 11:51 AM

Meteorological Spring and Astronomical Spring – What’s the Difference?

Thursday, March 1, marked the first day of meteorological spring. Astronomical spring, on the other hand, won’t begin for another few weeks.

Confused? You’re not alone.

Here are some things to know about the two seasons:

What’s the difference?

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, meteorologists follow the meteorological seasons based on the annual temperature cycle, whereas climatologists follow astronomical seasons, which are defined by the Earth’s position in relation to the sun.

» RELATED: When is Easter 2018 and why does the date change each year?

What are solstices and equinoxes?

Astronomical seasons are defined with two solstices and two equinoxes.

According to the National Weather Service, the summer solstice occurs the moment the earth’s tilt toward the sun is at a maximum and when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer. The sun is at its highest point in the sky anywhere north of the Tropic of Cancer. This is the longest day of the year in those areas.

The winter solstice occurs when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Capricorn and marks the shortest day and longest night of the year.

Equinoxes, on the other hand, are times of the year when the earth’s axis is tilted neither toward nor away from the sun. On these days, there’s almost an equal amount of daylight and darkness at all latitudes. But days are a little longer at the higher latitudes.

» RELATED: It’s Lenten season: Why it’s not always good to give up things for Lent

Approximately when do the solstices and equinoxes occur in the northern hemisphere?

Summer solstice: June 21

Winter solstice: Dec. 22

Vernal/spring equinox: March 21

Autumnal equinox: Sept. 22

When does astronomical spring begin?

Astronomical spring begins on the vernal or spring equinox, around March 21. 

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Which do we typically use to define seasons?

While people have long used the sun’s alignment and other natural phenomena to mark time, meteorological seasons are more closely tied to our calendar than the astronomical seasons. For example, meteorological spring includes March, April and May. Summer includes June, July and August. Fall includes September, October and November. And lastly, winter includes December, January and February.

Meteorological seasons are also more consistent compared to astronomical seasons.

Why do we typically use meteorological seasons for our civil calendars?

The exact dates of the solstices and equinoxes can vary between 89-93 days due to the earth’s elliptical orbit and whether or not it’s a Leap Year.

Due to the consistency of meteorological seasons (each season is roughly 90-92 days long), calculating seasonal statistics from monthly numbers is much easier. According to NOAA, this data is often used to understand trends in agriculture, commerce and more.

Learn more about the seasons at

FILE PHOTO: Working Sheep Dog, Twig, performs tricks for photographers amongst the spring daffodils.(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

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Smoke, flames from Fairfield apartment building prompts crews to respond 

Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 2:06 AM

Crews responded to the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive on fire reportedly coming from the third floor of an apartment building Tuesday morning, according to Fairfield police.

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Cause of Xenia house fire on Glen Kegley Drive under investigation

Initial reports indicate smoke and flames were showing around 12:25 a.m., prompting crews to evacuate the building.

We will continue to update this story as additional details become available. 

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Dayton traffic from the WHIO Traffic Center

Published: Friday, March 02, 2018 @ 2:52 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 1:14 AM

Traffic issues can be reported by calling our newsroom at 937-259-2237 or tweeting @WHIOTraffic .

Traffic conditions are updated every six minutes on AM 1290 and News 95.7 FM.

Major Highway Incidents

  • None to report.

Surface Street Incidents:

  • None to report.

>> RELATED: WHIO App-Winter

>> RELATED: Track the latest conditions in your neighborhood on our live WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Ongoing Construction & Other Closures 

Live look at highways on our traffic cameras here.

Latest traffic conditions are also available on our traffic map. 


  • Arlington Road between Pleasant Plain and Upper Lewisburg Salem Road, BRIDGE CLOSURE, March 5 - Sept. 30. All ramps for I-70 will remain open. 
  • Keowee Street north of Stanley Avenue, bridge closed until 2019. The official detour is: Keowee Street to Stanley Avenue to I-75 to Wagner Ford Road and back to Dixie. More information is available here.
  • Stewart Street Ramp to US 35 East, RAMP CLOSURE March 28 - Sept 30, 2018. The official detour is: Stewart Street to Edwin C. Moses Boulevard to I-75 north to US 35 west to James H. McGee Blvd. to US 35 east.
  • SR 48 between First Street and Riverdale Street, Lane closures March 19 - April 1. One lane will remain open in each direction.
  • I-75 north Ramp to US 35 west, RAMP CLOSURE, March 12 - Sept. 30. The official detour is: I-75 north to US 35 east to Jefferson/Main Street to Ludlow Street to US 35 west. 
  • I-75 north Ramp to US 35 west and east, Lane width restriction until Apr. 1, 2018. One lane will remain open on the ramp with a width of 11 feet.


  • N. Market Street between Foss Way/Kirk Lane and Stonyridge Avenue, ROAD CLOSURE March 5 at 7 a.m. - Aug. 10 at 5 p.m. 


  • SR 47 between Fifth Avenue and Wilkinson Avenue, Lane closures Jan. 21 - Nov. 27. One lane will remain open in each direction at all times. 


  • SR 121 between Washington Street and Fairview Street, ROAD CLOSURE Mar. 12 - April 13. The official detour is: SR 722 to US 127 to SR 503. 
  • SR 121 between Arnold Street and Harter Road, ROAD CLOSURE Mar. 12 - April 13. The official detour is: SR 722 to US 127 to SR 503. 


  • I-70 east Ramp to I-675 north, RAMP CLOSURE March 15 - Aug. 15. The official detour is: I-70 east to I-675 south to SR 444 to I-675 north


  • US 68 between SR 508 and Township Road 310, ROAD CLOSURE April 23 - 27. The official detour is: US 68 to SR 296 to SR 29 to SR 235 to SR 47 to US 68. 

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Kettering residents can learn about neighborhood crime with a mouse click

Published: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 11:23 PM

Lyn Grant has gotten comfortable during the nearly 40 years she has lived in Kettering.

But she's not naive enough to allow her comfort to lull her into unrealistic feelings of safety. 

"I've notice the neighborhood changing a little bit," Grant told News Center 7's Lauren Clark on Monday evening. "We had a car stolen once." 

To keep tabs on her neighborhood and its surroundings, Grant said she'll probably make use of a new online  crime-mapping tool the police department is offering in partnership with LexisNexis Risk Solutions "to be aware, to be on the lookout." 

The tool, Community Crime Map, makes information easily available for Grant and her neighbors who want to monitor crime. 

According to Kettering police officials, Grant and people like her inspired the department to partner with LexisNexis to create the crime-mapping tool. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Find out what happened to resident who shot an intruder

It's easy to use: 

 * Either enter your ZIP code or select OH-Kettering from the pull down list of communities 

 * You can also search by date range and event 

 * All incidents in the area you select will display on the map by type of crime 

 * The Data Grid tab displays crime information by incident type, date, location 

 * The Analytics tab displays graphs and charts of crimes by type, by day of the week and time of day 

 * In the top right corner of the page, you can sign up for daily, weekly or monthly crime alerts by incident type 

Residents also can sign up to receive crime alerts and neighborhood watch email reports of recent crimes from the police department. 

Miami Twp. recently contracted with LexisNexis to provide the service. Troy in Miami County and Bellbrook in Greene County are doing the same. 

If your community has partnered with LexisNexis, you too can find out crime data for where you live.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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