Ohio State Fair ride accident: How common are festival ride accidents?

Published: Thursday, July 27, 2017 @ 2:40 AM

Aerial scenes above accident at Ohio State Fair

After one person was killed and seven others were injured when a ride malfunctioned at the Ohio State Fair Wednesday night, many are asking if festival and amusement park rides are safe.

>> RELATED: Ohio State Fair ride accident: 1 dead, 7 hurt, Fair open Thursday, rides to remain shut down

Amusement park and festival ride accidents in Ohio are uncommon, according to a Dayton Daily News investigation conducted last year.

>> RELATED: Regulators, reports say rides safe, but accidents happen

The only ride-related death in Ohio over the last three years happened in 2015 when a 45-year-old man was struck by a roller coaster at Cedar Point in Sandusky. Police said the man had finished riding the Raptor roller coaster and jumped a fence to retrieve a cell phone when he was hit by the ride.

>> RELATED: No major problems with roller coaster that fatally struck man

Last year, the state’s chief ride inspector said most accidents are not caused by ride operators, but from people with pre-existing conditions who ignore warnings or putting kids on a ride who aren’t ready.

>> RELATED: Ohio State Fair accident: Other serious events at fairs or on rides in Ohio


Ohio ride safety inspection program

Number of accidents

2014 - 12

2015 - 5

2016 - 3

Number of deaths

2014 - 0

2015 - 1

2016 - 0

WATCH: Local racehorse running strong after being saved from a slaughterhouse 

Published: Wednesday, October 18, 2017 @ 12:12 PM

Killean Cut Kid, who often raced at the Dayton raceway, has now made a full recovery after almost being shipped to a slaughter house.  

When Save our Standardbreds From Slaughter (SOSS) found the horse, his legs were covered in ulcers so severe that those caring for him say it was difficult for the horse to stand. 

RELATED: See more trending stories on WHIO.com

In a recent social post Kid’s new owners posted the statement, “They said I would never heal, they said I needed skin grafts, they said I should be euthanized ... Look at ME now!”


Now Kid can be seen running briskly with one of his friends and seems to be fully enjoying his new home. 

Medical helicopter called to Darke County crash

Published: Wednesday, October 18, 2017 @ 10:24 AM

A medical helicopter was requested to the scene of a crash on Weaver Ft. Jefferson Road after a vehicle crashed into a pole this morning.

Firefighters responded to the crash in the 4500 block of Weavers-Ft. Jefferson Road around 10:10 a.m.

LOCAL NEWS: Speedway: Customer rearranges sign to say ‘Free Heroin w/ Speedy Rewards’

One person was transported aboard a medical helicopter to Kettering Medical Center for treatment of injuries, officials said.  The severity of injuries was not immediately known.

Deputies said the driver lost control for an unknown reason and struck a utility pole, bringing down live DP&L wires onto the vehicle.

Power crews had take care of the downed wires before emergency crews could remove the victim from the wreckage.

Wires were brought down when the vehicle hit the pole, officials said.

The subject of the LA Times’ chilling true-crime podcast got his start in Dayton 

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 1:19 PM

John Meehan was kept alive for four days after Terra Newell stabbed him 13 times. Photograph provided by Debra Newell/TNS)
John Meehan was kept alive for four days after Terra Newell stabbed him 13 times. Photograph provided by Debra Newell/TNS)

The man at the center of a popular new crime podcast studied at two Dayton-area universities -- and saw his license to work as a nurse anesthetist suspended after an investigation here. 

>> MORE HISTORIC CRIMES: 5 of Dayton's most shocking murders

John Meehan, the subject of the “Los Angeles Times” acclaimed series “Dirty John,” got his nickname during his short time in University of Dayton’s law school in 1988.

From the Times’ story: 

“Dirty John, classmates called him. Sometimes it was Filthy John Meehan, or just Filthy. But mostly Dirty John.”

Meehan was killed by a woman he attacked with a knife on the roof of an apartment complex parking lot in Newport Beach on Aug. 24 2016, according to the another Times article. 

Debra Newell and John Meehan attend a formal event in Orange County, Calif. John arrives in his faded blue medical scrubs to the formal-dress cancer benefit. (TNS)(Handout/TNS)

The Times series explores Meehan’s life and marriage to Debra Newell, as well as his life of crime.

What Meehan did in Dayton plays a critical part in the story. He married Tonia Sells, a nurse, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Dayton in 1990. The third episode of the podcast, “Filthy,” deals with Meehan's law school days, his marriage to Sells and an police officer who investigated him here.

>> MORE HISTORIC CRIMES: How this former cop committed one of Dayton's most notorious crimes of passion — and you decide his fate

She helped put him through nursing school at Wright State University, and then the Middle Tennessee School of Anesthesia.

He lost his licence to work as a nurse anesthetist after police searched his Hamilton home and found a loaded 9 mm Ruger in his closet and 45 empty containers for six different medications from a Kentucky hospital in his attic, according to a April 1, 2002 article by Dayton Daily News reporter Larry Budd.

Before his arrest, Meehan not only used the hospital medications himself, developing an addiction, authorities said. 

He also gave medications and information about their use to his brother who died in California in September 2000 from an overdose of his own prescription medications, according to records. 

>> MORE HISTORICAL CRIMES: Honeymoon mayhem: Dayton's very own Bonnie and Clyde

John Meehan, right, then a nurse anesthetist accused of stealing drugs from hospitals in four states, appeared with his attorney before Judge Patricia Oney in 2005. Staff photo: Greg Lynch, Journal-News

More from Budd’s article:

Another nurse anesthetist reported to the Ohio nursing board that Meehan once carried a gun into an operating room and exhibited drug-seeking tendencies, according to a case summary prepared by Luken for the Indiana State Board of Nursing. And Meehan was the subject of drug theft investigations in four states, according to police. 

>> MORE HISTORICAL CRIMES: This Dayton landlady helped nab infamous bank robber John Dillinger 

>> MORE: What you need to know about the Queen of Dayton’s Red Light District

John Meehan with his father, William Meehan, in San Jose, Calif., in the early 1960s. (Photo provided by Donna Meehan-Stewart/TNS)(Handout/TNS)

Debra Newell, who had previously been married, started dating John Michael Meehan in 2014. They quickly got married, but she eventually realized he was a con artist. (Rick Loomis/Los Angeles Times/TNS)(Rick Loomis/TNS)

The kitchen knife John Meehan used to attack Terra Newell. (Newport Beach Police Department/TNS)(Handout/TNS)

John Meehan, had thick dark hair and a warm, friendly smile, but he also had a very troubling past. (Photo provided by Debra Newell/TNS)(Handout/TNS)

Nickel a pill: Mayor Whaley's prescription painkiller surcharge plan

Published: Wednesday, October 18, 2017 @ 9:48 AM

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley at Wednesday's city commission meeting. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF
Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley at Wednesday's city commission meeting. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF(HANDOUT)