Speakers oppose aerial surveillance

Published: Tuesday, April 09, 2013 @ 9:19 PM
Updated: Tuesday, April 09, 2013 @ 9:19 PM

Twenty-one people addressed Dayton city officials at a Tuesday night meeting about proposed aerial surveillance, and all 21 either opposed the program or called for tight controls on it.

Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl, Assistant City Manager Shelley Dickstein and University of Dayton Research Institute official Larrell Walters explained the technology to more than 50 Dayton residents.

Addressing privacy concerns, Biehl said the cameras that would be used by Persistent Surveillance Systems are not capable of identifying a car’s make, model or license plate, or identifying a person’s race, gender, age or height.

He showed the crowd sample images taken from a piloted PSS plane during last summer’s test of the technology. In those images, a suspect’s truck was a blurry white rectangle, and a person loading that truck was little more than a speck. But because police received a report of a burglary at that address, Biehl said they were able to use the aircraft camera images to track where the truck went and eventually make an arrest after stolen goods were found.

South Park resident Lela Klein said she could support the cameras if their use was narrowly limited to serious crimes and dangerous situations like natural disasters, if there was a warrant required, and if there was an independent oversight group.

University of Dayton law professor Vernellia Randall and others expressed concerns over whether the images could be acquired by the public or corporations under public records law and mined for data.

David Hurwitz was one of several people who said the money for the $120,000 contract could be better used, saying, “the crimes that we’re trying to stop come from poverty.” Maria Holt, who lives in West Dayton, said if the city wants to stop crime, it should invest in education and programs for children as young as 5.

Dickstein said Tuesday’s comments would be forwarded to Dayton city commissioners, who were not present Tuesday, and they would decide the next step. Biehl said he wasn’t sure whether the overwhelming opposition Tuesday was reflective of the city as a whole. Biehl said if a decision is not made very soon, it’s unlikely Dayton will use the technology this year.

Vote so close, local school district tax levy heads to recount

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 2:59 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 2:59 PM

Preble Shawnee School District’s combination bond issue/income tax Election Day results will be subject to an automatic recount. Final, unofficial results show the levy failed by 6 votes.

A recount will be held on the Preble Shawnee School District’s combination bond issue/income tax, which narrowly failed on Election Day.

The vote fell with in the one-half of one percent vote margin, triggering an automatic recount which will likely be held next week, according to Terri Hans, director of the Preble County Board of Elections. She said the date is still being scheduled.

The final, unofficial result on May 2 was 1,320 no votes to 1,314 yes votes.

The district is mostly in Preble County - where the tax issue passed by 28 votes - but includes small parts of Montgomery and Butler counties, where it failed.

RELATED: Preble Shawnee levy losing by tiny margin; recount next

Hans said the tally in Montgomery County was 8 yes and 31 no votes, and in Butler County 1 yes and 12 no votes.

“It was the overlap counties that defeated (it),” said Hans, noting that recounts are rare in the county.

Revenue from the combination 2.5 mill bond issue and 0.75 percent income tax would have paid to replace a 1982 high school and two elementary buildings, parts of which are 80 to 100 years old. One new elementary school would have been build in Camden and a middle/high school on the existing site of the district’s schools.

School superintendent Matt Bishop couldn’t be reached for comment, but said last week that he didn’t expect a recount to flip the results. He said the issue would not be put on an August special ballot and he would talk to the school board about what to do next.

Preble Shawnee’s earlier effort to get the combined issue approved was rejected by a 53-47 percent ratio in November.

RELATED: 24 tax levies on May ballot across the region

Riverside woman dies from Kroger pedestrian strike

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 2:50 PM

An elderly Riverside woman died from injuries sustained in a Kroger parking lot pedestrian strike, coroner officials confirmed.

Constance Duke, 76, of Robinwood Avenue in Riverside, died May 20 after being struck around lunchtime May 19 at the Beavercreek Kroger, 3165 Dayton Xenia Road, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.

Duke died at Kettering Medical Center.

Her cause of death is blunt force injury of the head and the death was ruled accidental. 

Democrat files to challenge Congressman Mike Turner

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 @ 3:38 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:50 PM

Congressman Michael Turner (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

UPDATE: The name of a first possible challenger for U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, in 2018 has surfaced. Democrat Michael J. Milisits of Riverside filed a statement of candidacy  for the 2018 10th Congressional District race.

“I want the average person to have a voice in Washington,” Milisits said.

His filing with the Federal Elections Commission sets up his campaign committee, but Milisits has not started gathering signatures on nominating petitions necessary to get his name on the ballot.

He also has raised no money for the race.

Turner, who has held the seat since 2003, has $302,202 on hand, according to the FEC website.


For the first time in more than a dozen years, the congressional seat now held by U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, is being targeted by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which has named 79 seats of more than 130 it plans to focus on in 2018.

Turner was one of 20 new targets the DCCC announced Monday. He is one of only two that voted against the recent Republican legislation to replace Obamacare.

Mark Owens, chairman of the Montgomery County Democratic Party says the DCCC sees the 10th District as winnable for a Democrat in part because of the district makeup and also because of the current political climate.

RELATED: Look back at Turner’ 2016 race

The district includes all of Montgomery, Greene and part of Fayette County.

Turner’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

“I think it’s because even though it is a gerrymandered district it is less gerrymandered than some others around the country,” Owens said.

Owens said two potential candidates are already interested in challenging Turner in 2018 but he would not name them as he did not have their permission to do so.

RELATED: With protesters outside Republicans at local GOP dinner stress unity

“One is a West Point grad, Afghan/Iraq vet” and the other is a a local businesswoman, Owens said. He said one of the two “has some wealth and is going to put some money into” the race, which Owens expects will require $1 million to $1.5 million to be competitive.

Blaine Kelly, spokesman for the Ohio Republican Party, said Turner won by a large margin in the Nov. 2016 over teacher Robert Klepinger, a Democrat, and Huber Heights Mayor Thomas McMasters, an independent.

“The only explanation for the Democrats’ decision to target Congressman Turner, or any Republican seats in Ohio, is that they are gluttons for punishment. Congressman Turner’s constituents gave him a giant stamp of approval last November by reelecting him with sixty-four percent of the vote,” Kelly said. “Democrats can manufacture outrage when Republicans keep campaign promises, but they can’t fake votes.”

Turner’s seat is one of four in Ohio the DCCC believes can be taken from Republican incumbents in 2018. The others are U.S. Reps. Steve Chabot, R-Cincinnati, Bob Gibbs, R-Avon, and Dave Joyce, R-Russell Twp. Nearly all the targeted seats are held by the GOP and the others are open.

RELATED: Groups hold town hall without Rep. Mike Turner

Owens said a Democratic candidate can get logistical and fund-raising support from the DCCC in a targeted race. He thinks the last time Turner’s district was targeted was the year he won it in a 2002 battle against Democrat Rick Carne to replace longtime U.S. Rep. Tony Hall, D-Dayton.

“We’re incredibly excited that our national partners are expanding the map and targeting races like Ohio’s 10th Congressional District,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper.

The DCCC raised more than $9 million in April, beating previous records for the month, according to The Hill. However that’s about $1 million less than what was raised last month by Republicans.

Ariana Grande back in Florida hometown after concert bombing

Published: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 5:36 PM

Ariana Grande has reportedly returned to her hometown of Boca Raton, Florida, after her Manchester, England, concert was the site of a terrorist bombing on Monday night.

According to E News, Grande and her mother Joan Grande were greeted at Boca Raton Airport earlier today by boyfriend and musician Mac Miller. Sources from People magazine reported that as she departed the private jet, the 23-year-old singer “looked distraught and like she has been crying. They hugged for a while before they headed to a waiting car.”

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The Daily Mail reported that she was taken to the home of a family member in a gated community.

Grande, who had just finished her set at the Manchester Arena before the explosion that killed at least 22 people and injured more than 50, had previously tweeted her disbelief at the situation, saying,“Broken. From the bottom of my heart, I am so sorry.”

According to TMZ, Joan Grande, who was at the Manchester show with her daughter, helped get some scared young fans sitting near her in the front row backstage to safety.

Related: Manchester explosion: Ariana Grande's mother reportedly helps fans to safety

The suspect who detonated a suicide bomb near one of the exits has been identified by police as Salman Abedi, 22. The ISIS state has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Shortly after Monday’s explosion, Grande reached out to longtime friend Misha Lambert, whose father, songwriter Dennis Lambert, said, “No sooner had I heard the first reports when my daughter Misha called to say she was in touch with Ari and all of her people are safe and unhurt.”