5 people hurt in Champaign Co. crash

Published: Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 4:11 PM
Updated: Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 10:10 PM

UPDATE @ 10:10 p.m.

Of the five people hurt in a three-car collision this afternoon, two crash victims were flown to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton; two were taken to Mercy Memorial Hospital in Urbana; and one person was taken to Springfield Regional Medical Center.

The three cars involved were: a Ford four-door sedan, a Honda four-door sedan and a Chrysler station wagon, according to the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office.

The crash remains under investigation, and it’s not clear which driver was at fault. Deputies said they expect to release more information sometime Saturday morning.

UPDATE @ 4:50 p.m.

Five people were injured in a three-vehicle crash this afternoon, according to the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office.

Two people were taken to Mercy Memorial Hospital in Urbana and two people were taken by CareFlight to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, the sheriff’s office said. A MedFlight helicopter was called for a fifth patient, but it’s not clear which hospital the crash victim will be headed.

The crash initially was dispatched as a two-vehicle crash, but deputies said there were three vehicles involved.

We are working to learn more details about the crash and the conditions of the victims.


Two medical helicopters were called to a two-vehicle crash this afternoon in Champaign County.

The crash was reported around 3:45 p.m. in the 5600 block of Springfield-Urbana Pike at the entrance to the Harvest Square Mobile Home Park.


Man accused of ‘marrying’ 11-year-old stepdaughter, holding her captive for 19 years

Published: Monday, October 16, 2017 @ 5:18 PM

Man Accused Of ‘Marrying’ 11-Year-Old Stepdaughter, Holding Her Captive For 19 Years

An Oklahoma man was arrested in Mexico earlier this month amid allegations that he “married” his 11-year-old stepdaughter in a van, abducted her and kept her captive as his “wife” for nearly 20 years. 

Henri Michele Piette, 62, is charged with first-degree rape, two counts of lewd molestation and child abuse by injury, according to Oklahoma court records. He was taken into custody Oct. 5 in Mexico, where he lived with the victim and their children for years after her alleged abduction. 

The Oklahoman reported that the now 33-year-old victim, Rosalynn Michelle McGinnis, is speaking out about her ordeal since returning to the United States. Court records show that McGinnis escaped captivity last year with eight of her nine children and found her way to a U.S. Embassy in Mexico, where she received help. 

Her oldest child, a boy, had already run away from the remote village in which they lived. McGinnis told People magazine in August that she has since been reunited with her son. 

Piette was still at large and under investigation by federal investigators when McGinnis first detailed her ordeal and subsequent escape. 

“I knew that if I didn’t get out of there, I’d either go insane or I would end up dying and leaving my kids with that man,” McGinnis told the magazine.

She alleged in her interview that she was raped, beaten, stabbed, choked and shot during her captivity.  

Piette, who has since been returned to Wagoner County for prosecution, told Fox23 News in Tulsa last week that he’s innocent. 

“Most of it are lies,” he told the news station as he shuffled into a courtroom for a hearing, surrounded by deputies. “Ninety-nine percent are lies. I’m telling the truth.”

He also denied raping McGinnis.

“I never raped any children. I made love to my wife,” Piette said. “We were married.”

McGinnis told investigators that Piette first raped her at the age of 11 at their home in Wagoner, the Oklahoman reported. He later “married” her in the back of a van, giving her a ring.

Piette’s son told FBI investigators in January that he performed the “ceremony” for his father. The son was 15 at the time.

McGinnis told People that her “marriage” to Piette took place the day before he legally married her mother. 

McGinnis’ mother later left Piette because of abuse in the home, the Oklahoman said. She and her daughter were living at a woman’s shelter in Poteau, about 100 miles southeast of Wagoner, when Piette abducted the girl in January 1997 from her new school. 

Piette introduced McGinnis to his children as their new mother, court records obtained by the newspaper showed. In the subsequent years, they moved frequently, living in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Montana and Idaho before moving on to Mexico.

“McGinnis stated that she was sexually assaulted multiple times a day almost every day while she was with Piette,” the court documents read.

>> Read more trending news

Piette would return to Oklahoma occasionally and make McGinnis mail letters from there so authorities would believe she was still living somewhere in the state, she told investigators. He also changed everyone’s names often to stay hidden.

McGinnis told People that, at the age of 18, she was forced by Piette to get her name and photo taken off national missing persons’ lists. 

“He parked three blocks down the road from the Phoenix Police Department, and he had three of my children,” she told the magazine. “He told me what to tell them. He said that if I didn’t come back within two hours, I would never see my children again.”

McGinnis said she walked into the police station and told officers that she had run away from home at 12 because her parents were drug addicts and that “nice people” had taken her in and raised her. Police, with no evidence to the contrary, were forced to believe her. 

She returned to Piette and her captivity, where she remained for another 13 years. In that time frame, she had another six children by her alleged abductor. 

Body of missing 6-year-old boy found in dumpster

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 9:33 AM

VIDEO: Body of Missing 6-Year-Old Found In Dumpster

The body of a 6-year-old boy with autism, who was reported missing near Lynnwood, Washington, was found in a dumpster early Tuesday.

The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office said Dayvid Pakko was a victim of a homicide. A 19-year-old man, who is a relative of the boy, has been taken into custody.

>> Read more trending news

Detectives were processing the crime scene Tuesday morning and are expected to be working for several hours

Dayvid was reported missing at about 5 p.m. Monday.

Crews searched for the boy in the area of 44th Avenue West between 156th Street and State Route 99, just outside Lynnwood city limits.

According to the sheriff’s office and relatives, Dayvid stayed home sick from school Monday. He was last seen at about 2:30 p.m.

The sheriff's office said Dayvid was under adult supervision while he was at home, but did not say who he was with.

Dozens of search and rescue personnel, along with civilian volunteers combed the area.

Reward offered in search for man suspected of raping, killing baby

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 2:20 AM
Updated: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 10:06 AM

Police Looking For Man Who Killed, Sexually Assaulted Baby

Police in eastern Ohio are looking for a man suspected of raping and killing a baby girl.

According to WFMJ, the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information that leads to the arrest of Joshua Gurto.

>> Read more trending news

Gurto is accused of raping and killing a 13-month-old girl in Ohio’s Ashtabula County. He is wanted by the U.S. Marshals Service and the Conneaut Police Department on aggravated murder and rape charges, WFMJ reported.

The child, identified by authorities as Sereniti Jazzlynn-Sky Blankenship-Sutley, died Oct. 7, according to WJW. Citing the Ashtabula County Coroner’s Office, the news station reported that she suffered blunt force trauma to her head and trunk.

Investigators told WJW that Gurto is the boyfriend of the baby’s mother. He has not been seen since shortly after Gurto’s death, when police in Conneaut released him from custody, WKYC reported.

“He was very cooperative through the whole initial process,” Conneaut police Det. Mike Sullivan told the news station. “We opted to release him. There were no charges to keep him at the time.”

Charges were filed against Gurto last week.

“She was a precious girl,” Sereniti’s mother, Kelsie Blankenship, told WKYC. “She brought me a reason to live.”

In an obituary, family members remembered Sereniti as a “loveable little girl who brought a smile to your face.”

“Her personality was bright and her smile was contagious,” the obituary said. “Although her time here was short, the lasting memories she brought to her family will forever be treasured.”

Police said Gurto has ties to western Pennsylvania.

He is described as:

  • 37 years old
  • 5 feet, 10 inches tall
  • 145 pounds
  • Deformed right ear
  • Misaligned jaw
  • Tattoos on right forearm

Anyone with information on Gurto’s whereabouts is asked to call the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force at 866-4WANTED or text keyword WANTED and the information to 84711.

Tipsters can remain anonymous.

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

JCPenney to hire 1,600 Ohio workers for holiday jobs on the spot today

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 9:34 AM

            JC Penney store and entrance to the Fairfield mall.
JC Penney store and entrance to the Fairfield mall.

JCPenney is hosting its first-ever national hiring day today and will hire people on the spot for holiday jobs.

The company is looking to fill around 1,600 seasonal jobs today, according to the company’s website. Managers will be holding in-person interviews and making employment offers to job candidates immediately from 2 to 8 p.m today.

The national hiring day for the department store is part of an effort to hire more than 40,000 seasonal associates at approximately 875 stores, according to the company.

RELATED: Kroger planning big changes for hundreds of stores

Candidates can apply in-store at applicant kiosks or ahead of time online at JCPenney’s career website. Applicants who are unable to attend the hiring event are still encouraged to apply online, according to the department store’s website.

JCPenney will be looking for people to fill roles in customer service and support positions, such as cashiers, replenishment specialists, beauty consultants at SEPHORA inside JCPenney and more, according to the company.

JCPenney has four Dayton-area locations including stores at the Fairfield Commons mall, the Dayton Mall, Miami Valley Mall in Piqua and Bridgewater Falls Shopping Center in Hamilton, according to the company’s website.

STORE CLOSINGS: 75 retailers expected to close on Thanksgiving Day

JCPenney also four locations in the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky area as well as three in the Columbus area.

Next week, JCPenney will host a national hiring day for its “Salon by InStyle,” according to the company. The department store will look to hire 7,000 stylists for its salons on Oct. 24 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.


Ohio colleges see increase in reports of rape and sexual assaults

JOB LOSS: Local plastics manufacturer to lay off 57 workers

Wright State again planning to cut swimming and diving teams after this season

4 restaurants, retailers coming to vacant Logan’s Roadhouse