Student threats disrupt school routines

Published: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 @ 9:21 PM
Updated: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 @ 9:21 PM

School shootings have forced area districts to heighten the attention they give to any threats of violence by students.

Tipp City Schools brought in an FBI agent and a local police detective Wednesday night to speak to concerned parents about multiple threats of violence made at two of the district’s schools in the last week.

Authorities said the fake threats take students out of valuable classroom time, are costly and force law enforcement off the streets. The bomb squad from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base was called twice to the Tipp City threats.

Responses such as these have been employed by local school districts for years, while others have been folded into districts’ protocols as threats and acts of violence have occurred across the country.

“We have taken more precautions than we ever have, but are we safer? I’m not sure,” said Keith St. Pierre, Bellbrook-Sugarcreek superintendent.

Local school districts — including Urbana, Xenia, Springboro, Troy, Bellbrook-Sugarcreek, Springfield, Huber Heights and Edgewood — have dealt with threats of school violence in the last year.

“People are absolutely concerned because Sandy Hook just happened, and before that there was Columbine and Chardon,” Tipp City Superintendent John Kronour said. “The media has a role in this. The more coverage there is, the more it gets our school in the news and kids know that.”

St. Pierre said communication in general has contributed to the spread of the breeding of these threats.

“There’s more attention (on school violence) because there are more ways to communicate, such as Facebook, Twitter, email, (etc.),” St. Pierre said. “And sometimes once (these threats) start, it’s hard to get it stopped. You stop it by catching these kids.”

In Tipp City on Wednesday, police arrested a middle school and high school student in connection with threats made at those schools in the last week.

The 14- and 15-year-old boys reportedly know each other, but it was unclear whether the threats were done individually. Both have been taken to the West Central Juvenile Detention Center, according to Tipp City Sgt. Detective Chris Graham.

Graham told parents Wednesday night that five notes were written and police believe the two students arrested wrote two of them. Kronour said they will continue to investigate who wrote the other three notes.

“We will continue through a heighten sense of security until we have everyone caught, but we’ll probably will never go back to the way it was. I don’t think you can,” said Kronour, adding police will continue to be present in the schools.

FBI Special Agent Tim Ferguson answered questions about dealing with threats such as these and commended the local police action.

“I think districts are being more vigilant,” Ferguson said. “The vast majority of these are school pranks and kids think it will get them out of school, but (officials) have to take them seriously.”

Troy Superintendent Eric Herman, who was dealing with two separate threats made this week at Troy High and Troy Junior High schools, said schools have to follow up on every threat until it is resolved. One student was arrested Wednesday afternoon, according to police.

“We’ve changed our security, tightened everything down even more, added more supervision,” Herman said. “When we get this type of threat, we just investigate it as fast as we can.”

Ferguson said contacting police immediately is the best route for any district. He added that getting the school resource officer and advisers together for a meeting to examine the evidence and assist police also is of great value.

Some parents at the Tipp City meeting said their children were scared and suggested the school provide some kind of counseling for students who need it.

“My son told me he didn’t want to die in school,” one woman said.

Kronour said he thinks threats of school violence such as these run in cycles, and have for many years.

“Back when I worked in Brookville (Local Schools) in the late ’80s, we had a number of bomb threats and we brought in the bomb squad,” Kronour said. “We took the threats as credible, but I don’t know if we put as much time and energy in then.

“It’s a difficult situation, but we don’t want to undue everything we have done in the district. We don’t want to live in fear.”

Bill Maher takes credit for Milo Yiannopoulos' downfall

Published: Thursday, February 23, 2017 @ 1:25 AM
Updated: Thursday, February 23, 2017 @ 1:25 AM


            Bill Maher takes credit for Milo Yiannopoulos' downfall

After booking Milo Yiannopoulos on his HBO program last week, TV personality Bill Maher was openly criticized for giving the alt-right provocateur a large platform.

Since Yiannopoulos' appearance, a video in which he seemed to condone men having sex with boys circulated online.

>> Leslie Jones on Milo Yiannopoulos: 'I was done the day I blocked him'

In the days that followed, Yiannopoulos was removed from the lineup of a conservative conference in Maryland, his book deal with Simon & Schuster was canceled, and he resigned from his position at Breitbart News.

And Maher is taking all the credit.

>> Milo Yiannopoulos resigns from Breitbart amid controversy over pedophilia comments

“What I think people saw was an emotionally needy Ann Coulter wannabe, trying to make a buck off of the left’s propensity for outrage,” Maher told the New York Times. “And by the end of the weekend, by dinnertime Monday, he’s dropped as a speaker at CPAC. Then he’s dropped by Breitbart, and his book deal falls through. As I say, sunlight is the best disinfectant. You’re welcome.”

Maher also responded to criticism that he went easy on Yiannopoulos during their segment.

>> Milo Yiannopoulos book deal canceled following remarks on pedophilia 

“It’s not my job to hold him accountable to everything he’s ever said or done,” Maher said. “I had eight minutes with him on the show itself. Sorry I don’t have time to go over everything everybody else would want to do.”

Though Yiannopoulos' interview with Maher seemed cordial, his panel appearance later in the program was not. After insulting the other people on the panel, Yiannopoulos was hit by big criticism from writer and former "Nightly Show" host Larry Wilmore.

>> Read more trending news

Rollover crash under investigation in Huber Heights

Published: Thursday, February 23, 2017 @ 12:36 AM

Huber Heights police are working to determine who was driving a car that ended up on its top on Rip Rap Road late Wednesday night. 

Officers and medics were dispatched to a reported rollover crash at the intersection of Rip Rap and Chambersburg roads around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday. 

Police said they are working to determine the cause of the crash. Investigators said they were also unsure who was actually driving the vehicle at the time of the crash. 

No injuries were reported. 

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Video shows Brookville police officer being shot by suspect

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2017 @ 4:34 PM

Conrad Davis said he had been up for days and high on methamphetamine when he shot Brookville police officer Henry Edds in a shootout that left his fiance dead at Brookville’s Speedway gas station.

RELATED: Davis sentenced to 15 years

Grainy, far-off surveillance video from the gas station on on Oct. 31, 2016 shows Davis,27 driving around the pumps, Edds fall after being shot and Ashley Sides fall after being shot by Brookville police officer Frank Graci. Sides, 31, died at the scene after being shot three times by Graci, who thought she shot Edds.

After Sides crashed her car after being pursued by state troopers, she met up with Davis, but didn’t get into his vehicle. Davis said Sides wanted to get personal items out of the stolen Cadillac she was driving, according to the full investigative case file obtained Wednesday by this news organization.

The police reports didn’t point out what items Sides wanted to get, but an evidence list from the various scenes included “cremated remains” and marijuana.

Edds — who was wearing a body cam that didn’t capture any footage after Oct. 26 — is still on leave and recovering from a gunshot wound to his left arm. Graci is back on duty.

RELATED:Chief says officers violated no policy

Davis told a detective he was suicidal after the incident, and phone records indicated Sides had tried to break up with Davis, stating in text messages that he was abusive, ignored her and spent all his money on drugs.

“I had an issue for a year and a half with Hemi (meth),” Davis told investigators in a suspect video, and when asked if he was high when he shot Edds, Davis said, “Yes, sir.”

Davis was sentenced last week to 15 years in prison for one count of involuntary manslaughter and two counts of felonious assault of a police officer.

EARLIER: Woman shot did not have a gun

The video and investigative file was requested from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) through Ohio open records law. The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office denied the request until the sentencing entry was made in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court records.

The file indicates Davis found Sides at the Wendy’s near where she crashed the stolen Cadillac.

“Sides approached on foot and Davis said he told her to get in his car so they could leave but Sides refused and said she wanted to get personal items out of the car before they left,” MCSO detective Walt Steele wrote in an 18-page report, part of the dozens of documents obtained.

Davis told Steele he went into Wendy’s to get something to eat, but that he was nervous and left after 15 to 20 seconds. Davis said he saw several police officers and got a call from from Sides and saw Graci chasing Sides, who did not obey Graci’s commands.

RELATED: Cruiser cam footage released

Davis said he thought he shot Edds through the passenger window, but didn’t hear any return fire. He said he got back on the highway, crashed into a fence, then drove in a field until he got stuck in a pond. Davis told Steele he knew he lost the magazine from his .22 semi-automatic Ruger handgun.

“Davis relayed that he ran and found an unlocked, unoccupied trailer at a residence and entered it,” Steele wrote. “He said he took off his wet clothes and laid down.

“He said he thought about killing himself with the gun as it still had one bullet in the chamber, confirming the magazine was missing.”

SOCIAL MEDIA: FOLLOW Mark Gokavi on Twitter or Facebook

At his sentencing, Davis said: “Almost every night since Oct. 31, 2016, I lay in bed sleepless, reliving the tragic events we set in motion,” he said, talking about Sides.

“When you were on the ground and you yelled for help, there was no thought process, only passion to protect the one that I loved. How misguided I was by drugs and the choices we both made.”

Documents said Oct. 26, 2016 texts showed Sides tell Davis, “We can’t be together,” “Plz leave me alone,” and “I saw a long long tunnel of light a bright light with no life at the end…”

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The file indicates some slight differences in Edds’ and Graci’s version of events.

A Nov. 9, 2016 statement by Edds said: “The female started to turn toward me with something in her hand. I then yelled out that I had been shot,” Edds said. “I then looked at the SUV and the white male driver had his arm outside the window and a gun in his hand and I heard a shot.”

Graci’s statement from the same day said that Edds yelled out, “she shot me, I’m shot, I’m shot.” Both officers relayed how Graci used a belt as a tourniquet to stop the bleeding to Edds’ arm.

Brookville police Chief Doug Jerome did not return a message seeking comment.

Video play-by-play

The report includes a description of what happened Oct. 31, 2016 at the Speedway gas station and a time code, edited for space below:

9:48.54 p.m.: Brookville cruiser pulls up to the south of pump 13 and parks as SUV pulls out and circles the cruiser, possibly bumping the cruiser

9:48.59 p.m.: Edds gets out of cruiser and runs toward pumps 11 and 10 as Graci chases Sides

9:49.01 p.m.: Graci is in front of pumps 10 and 9 with Sides to his east and the SUV approaches traveling north, appearing to nearly hit Sides as Edds runs toward Graci, Sides and the SUV

9:49.04: Edds approaches Sides to her east as the SUV rounds the pumps

9:49.07: Edds falls to the ground, appears to have been shot as SUV is near pumps 7 and 6 going southeast

9:49.11: Sides falls to the ground, appearing to have been shot as SUV exits east onto Arlington Road

$41K reward offered in unsolved killings of Indiana girls

Published: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 @ 2:48 PM

UPDATE @ 10:15 a.m. (Feb. 22)

Indiana authorities are offering a reward for information that leads to solving the slayings of 14-year-old Liberty German and 13-year-old Abigail Williams.

Indiana State Police Capt. Dave Bursten said in a news conference this morning that there is a $41,000 reward for anyone providing information that leads to solving the case.

Authorities released an audio clip during the press conference that was captured by Liberty German’s phone. Bursten played the clip and informed their suspect can be heard saying, "Down the hill."

Sgt. Tony Slocum from ISP urged anyone who has information regarding the suspect in the picture they released to call into their tip line immediately. (844) 459-5786.

UPDATE @ 7:30 p.m. (Feb. 19)

A man photographed walking along the Delphi Historic Trails on Feb. 13, the same day two girls were killed, is now considered “the main suspect” in their deaths, Indiana State Police said today.

The unidentified man previously had been considered a person authorities wanted to speak to in their investigation of the homicides of 14-year-old Liberty German and 13-year-old Abigail Williams. 

“He’s not just someone we want to talk to; we consider him a suspect in these murders,” Sgt. Tony Slocum said Sunday. “We’re officially calling him a suspect versus a subject we’re looking to speak to. He’s going to be our main suspect at this time,” he said. 

The man in the photo released by investigators was seen on Delphi Historic Trails around the same time the teens were dropped off by a relative, CBS affiliate WTTV reported.

UPDATE @ 3:10 p.m. ( Feb 15)

Indiana officials confirmed that the two bodies found in Carrol County on Tuesday were in fact the two missing teens. 

Officials said the bodies were taken to Terre Haute where a coroner conducted the autopsies that confirmed their identities.

EARLIER REPORT

Two bodies were located while authorities were searching for two missing Carroll County, Ind. teens, who were first reported missing Monday afternoon.

According to CBS 4 in Indianapolis, the bodies were found in Deer Creek in Delphi, a city located northwest of Indianapolis.

Officials have not yet released information on the identifications of the bodies, but officials did say foul play is suspected.

Authorities haven’t officially called off the search for the two missing girls, Liberty German and Abigail Williams, CBS 4 reported.

The two teens were supposed to be picked up by family members at a predetermined time and place, but when family arrived the girls were not there Monday, according to CBS 4.

Police said the teens were last seen around 1 p.m. near an abandoned railroad bridge just east of Delphi.