Dayton pushes police and fire recruiting

Published: Monday, March 18, 2013 @ 12:00 AM
Updated: Monday, March 18, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

With a Justice Department-mandated hiring freeze behind it, the city of Dayton has 24 firefighter recruits headed for academy training in April, a third police recruit class going to the academy in June, and another police test scheduled for June 8 to create a new pool of candidates for the next two years.

Dayton’s police and fire ranks shrank when the city was unable to hire for more than two years because of a court settlement regarding racial discrimination in civil service testing.

While it was unable to hire firefighters, the city hired dozens of civilian paramedics to handle EMS work, while moving dual-trained firefighters away from EMS duty.

Dayton Civil Service Chief Examiner Maurice Evans said Dayton has a pool of 54 eligible candidates for the fire academy.

“If the budget and the demand commands it, we’ll have another class ready to go (after the first 24),” Evans said.

Meanwhile, Dayton Police Department officials say waves of new officers will just help them keep up with retirements. Major Mark Ecton said over 10 years, Dayton’s police staffing dropped from about 500 officers to 330.

“We’re just making up for people who retire,” Ecton said. “We’re not making any real strides in getting up to the strength level we would like, which is on the other side of 360.”

This summer’s third police class will exhaust the city’s eligible candidate list, so Dayton is now advertising its next police test, which will be held June 8. Interested candidates – U.S. citizens between 20 and 34 years old who have a high school diploma or GED – must apply by April 19, either at, or by calling (937) 333-2300.

“We’re trying in our current recruiting campaign to attract applicants that will help us build the best possible police force, with an emphasis on increasing the number of African-Americans and other ethnic minority officers, so the department better reflects the Dayton community,” Ecton said.

Evans told city commissioners last week that 37 percent of early applicants were either of a minority race or female.

Dayton police officer Terry Perdue, a member of the newest class to hit the street, and one of the faces of Dayton’s recruiting effort, urged those interested in taking the test to start studying now.

“If you come out of high school at 18, work a job until you’re 20 or 21, then go to take the test … you haven’t studied in three years, and it will put you at a disadvantage,” he said.

Evans said felony convictions will disqualify people from serving as police. But Perdue said that some who have made mistakes can still make it as a police officer.

“They’re not looking for perfect people,” Perdue said. “They’re looking for a person who has the right morals, and is going to be honest on the job.”

Hit-and-run driver admits heroin use after fatally striking bicyclist

Published: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 12:52 AM

Contributed Photo/WCPO-TV

A bicyclist was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver, who later admitted to using heroin before getting behind the wheel near Cincinnati on Monday.

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The victim, 61-year-old William Rust III, of Cincinnati, was riding his bike along the shoulder of U.S. 52 in Anderson Twp., just east of Cincinnati Monday afternoon, our news partner WCPO-TV reports.

A car, driven by Steven Sickle, 33, of Feesburg, Ohio, drifted off the road and hit Rust, throwing him from the bike, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office said in a media release. Deputies said Sickle fled the scene without stopping or attempting to help.

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Rust was pronounced dead at the scene.

Another person drover Sickle back to the scene of the crash, where he admitted to ingesting heroin before driving, WCPO-TV reports.

Sickle was charged with fleeing the scene of a deadly automobile crash, and aggravated vehicular homicide.  

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Megachurch pastors Joel and Victoria Osteen criticized for throwing ‘Hook ‘Em’ hand sign

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 @ 5:16 PM

DALLAS, TX - AUGUST 30:  Pastors Victoria Osteen and Joel Osteen speak during MegaFest at the American Airlines Center on August 30, 2013 in Dallas, Texas.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Thousands of students graduated this past weekend from the University of Texas at Austin, flooding social media with photos of proud new alumni and their families.

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For most parents, documenting the occasion with a photo means throwing up the “Hook ’em Horns” hand sign, too, usually without much fuss. But when your parents are the first couple of televangelism, a spirited hand gesture can take on a whole other meaning. 

>> Photos: Longhorns arriving for UT graduation ceremony May 20 

Joel Osteen and his wife, Victoria, draw thousands every week to their massive Lakewood Church in Houston, and millions tune in from across the globe to watch. The pair also head a massive multi-million dollar empire stemming from book deals and tours. Their son, Jonathan, recently graduated from UT, and he posed with each of his parents for a pretty common photo taken during commencement weekend: the graduate and his mom and dad both making the “Hook ’em Horns” hand sign. 

Donald Trump reportedly asked NSA and director of national intelligence to undermine FBI’s investigation

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 @ 11:30 PM

Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats, National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers testifiy before the Senate Intelligence Committee in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill May 11, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Donald Trump sought to have Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers publicly discredit the FBI’s investigation into Russian ties to his campaign by denying the existence of any evidence of collusion.

That’s according to current and former intelligence officials who spoke to The Washington Post.

On March 20, former FBI Director James Comey confirmed under oath to the House Intelligence Committee that there was an ongoing FBI investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russian interests.

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That, say intelligence officials, kicked off a series of attempts by Trump to have Coats and Rogers step forward to publicly undercut the investigation. Both believed the requests to be highly improper and did not cooperate, according to intelligence.

At least one of the conversations — with NSA Director Rogers — was documented in a memorandum retained by the NSA. The Washington Post reports that NSA officials are prepared to make it available to House and Senate committees investigating the issue as well as former FBI Director Robert Mueller’s investigation.

This news comes on the same day that former White House National Security Advisor Michael Flynn invoked his Fifth Amendment rights by refusing to provide documents requested by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

When reached for comment, a White House spokesperson told The Washington Post, “The White House does not confirm or deny unsubstantiated claims based on illegal leaks from anonymous individuals.”

Manchester explosion: Here’s what we know about the victims

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 @ 11:31 PM

Armed police stand guard at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig  in Manchester, England Monday, May 22, 2017. Police says there are

Authorities continue  to sort out what happened Monday night when a man who police believe was a suicide bomber detonated an explosive device outside an arena in Manchester, England,

The explosion happened moments after the conclusion of a concert by pop star Ariana Grande.

At least 19 have been confirmed dead and nearly 60 injured as of 10 p.m. ET.

Here's what we know now about some of the victims: