The Greene evicts one of its own restaurants

Published: Thursday, February 01, 2018 @ 9:54 AM

Choe’s Asian Gourmet is subject of civil lawsuit and has “temporarily closed” sign on door.

The Greene Town Center is evicting one of its own restaurants and is attempting to return the eatery to its former owners. 

>>INSIDE LOOK: Choe’s Asian Gourmet restaurant

A lawsuit filed by The Greene’s owner seeks forcible entry into Choe’s Asian Gourmet restaurant at 4394 Juniper Way, which hasn’t served customers for several weeks and which has a sign taped to the door that says simply, “Temporarily Closed.”

>> RELATED: 4 things to know about the new Fuzzy’s Taco restaurant coming to The Greene

This notice to vacate, dated Nov. 13, 2017, was a part of the lawsuit filed against Choe’s Asian Gourmet at The Greene in Beavercreek.(Staff Writer)

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The lawsuit filed in Nov. 21 in Greene County Common Pleas Court claimed that the limited liability corporation that was operating Choe’s Asian Gourmet owed more than $49,000 in rent and utilities that had accumulated since July. A “notice to vacate” was delivered to the restaurant eight days earlier, notifying the restaurant operators that eviction proceedings could be filed unless the arrears were paid within three days. 

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“It’s an unusual set of circumstances,” Steve Willshaw, general manager of The Greene, told this news outlet Wednesday afternoon. “We took the restaurant back so the former owners could take it back over. They will be doing some remodeling and changing the name. It’s a very, very good thing.”

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The entrance to Choe’s Asian Gourmet. MARK FISHER/STAFF(Staff Writer)

Greene County Common Pleas Judge Michael Buckwalter ruled in December that the restaurant’s operators had violated the lease agreement and awarded The Greene full access to the property. The action was taken after the restaurant’s operators failed to respond in a timely manner to the lawsuit.

However, Dayton attorney Eugene Robinson has now entered the case representing the restaurant’s operators, and two weeks ago, on Jan. 18, Robinson asked the judge for additional time to respond to the lawsuit on behalf of his clients. No decision on that request has been made.

>> RELATED: Locally owned retailers helping attract shoppers to The Greene

Robinson declined to comment on the case on Wednesday afternoon.

The Greene evicts one of its own restaurants

A woman who said her first name is Ann but who declined to give her last name — and who said she was the manager of the restaurant — said in a phone interview that business was slow in part because foot traffic is down in the restaurant’s section of The Greene. Choe’s is located on the eastern side of The Greene, near the Von Maur department store. She said she attempted to re-negotiate the terms of her lease but instead was ordered to vacate.

>> RELATED: 5 restaurants that have shut down at The Greene

Greene County Public Health records show that restaurant inspectors were at Choe’s several times in the second half of 2017 and reported multiple violations of food handling, storage and cleanliness guidelines. But health department officials said the problems had not escalated to the point where the restaurant was being threatened with shutdown. 

>> RELATED: McCormick & Schmick’s shuts down abruptly at The Greene

The Choe’s manager said some of the restaurant’s problems stemmed from a disgruntled former employee.

The health department has classified the restaurant as closed, health officials said. The lawsuit is still pending in Greene County Common Pleas Court.

Have you been wondering about that “temporarily closed” sign on its door? Share the news with your friends on Facebook:

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Self-proclaimed white nationalist banned from Seattle gym

Published: Monday, February 19, 2018 @ 12:07 AM

A Seattle gym banned Greg Johnson, a self-proclaimed white nationalist. (Photo: KIRO7.com)
A Seattle gym banned Greg Johnson, a self-proclaimed white nationalist. (Photo: KIRO7.com)

A self-proclaimed white nationalist was banned from a Fremont gym after the owners learned he is a leader in the alt-right community.

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The owners of Northwest Fitness Project say Greg Johnson is longer welcome there.

“The trainer terminated his contract and we banned him from the gym,” said Kyle Davis, a co-owner of the gym.

It's a move that has some people wondering if it violates a city ordinance that says "places of public accommodation" can't discriminate based on a person's beliefs.

But the owners of the gym say that ordinance doesn't apply -- because it’s not a public space. To use the space, you must be the client of a trainer.

“There’s no open gym membership, it's not like people can come and go as they please,” Davis said. “Trainers come and run their own businesses out of this location."

“There's a right of first refusal of the independent trainer. And (the trainer) chose to not work with him anymore due to the harm it would cause his reputation, and not wanting to be associated with those views,” Davis said.

The Southern Poverty Law Center calls Greg Johnson an "international figure for white nationalism” and “one of the leading voices of the far-right.”

In September 2017, the New York Times interviewed him undercover and posted it on its website.

In the interview, Johnson says, “I would identify myself as a white nationalist. That states the goals I have politically.”

When asked about people who are Jewish, Johnson says, “The solution would ultimately (be) to expel them.”

Davis said he’s disturbed to hear Johnson’s views.

“I would feel threatened, yes,” he said. “I'm converting to Judaism, my fiancée is Jewish and we want to raise our kids Jewish.”

The owners say after Johnson was banned, a white nationalist publication told followers to post negative reviews on the gym's Yelp and Facebook pages.

“We were at a five (star average review); it went down to a three,” said Matthew Holland, the other co-owner of Northwest Fitness Project.

But hundreds of people supported the gym on social media, helping it bounce back.

“Now we're to like a 4.8,” Holland said. “We have a great community and we didn't realize how awesome they all were. Going through a rough time like this, it was just so encouraging.”

The Puget Sound Anarchists first published last week that Johnson lives in Seattle. It’s also how the gym owners found out about Johnson’s beliefs.

Johnson did not comment.

The gym said it heard Johnson left the area.

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Several sinkholes open in Florida neighborhood, threaten homes

Published: Sunday, February 18, 2018 @ 11:24 PM

Several sinkholes opened in a Florida neighborhood. (Photo: WFTV.com)
Several sinkholes opened in a Florida neighborhood. (Photo: WFTV.com)

Several sinkholes opened in The Villages Thursday, threatening several homes, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said. 

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Four homes have been evacuated. Officials said the largest of the three holes is 35 feet deep and 18 feet wide. 

One of the sinkholes that opened up is outside Frank Newman’s home.

He said he heard strange sounds and wasn’t sure what was going on.

“At about 12:30 I was watching the Olympics when I heard something that I thought was thunder,” Newman said.

Hours later, he found out what was actually going on.

“My front door bell rings about 3:10. It was a policeman saying, ‘You got to get out of your house,’” Newman said.

Marion County Emergency Management was also at the scene and said that utilities to the four closest homes have been disconnected as a precaution.

The sinkholes go beneath two of the homes.

Photos: Sinkholes open in Villages neighborhood

Cracks formed outside Newman’s neighbor’s home and a hole opened up near her front door.

“In her house, she is seeing cracks inside the house on the floor and stuff,” Newman said. “She can’t get her car out of the garage because the garage door won’t open.”

Signs have been placed outside some of the homes warning the houses have been condemned.

Golf course officials are draining a lake to help the situation. Utilities officials said that if a water main break occurs, they will be able to handle it, but 20 homes could potentially lose water service if that happens.

Residents were allowed to briefly return to their homes to pick up some belongings.

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Study: Common household chore just as damaging as smoking 20 cigarettes a day

Published: Saturday, February 17, 2018 @ 10:05 AM

Household Chore Could Be Just As Damaging As Smoking A Pack Of Cigarettes A Day

Love to keep a tidy home? The chemicals in common cleaning sprays could be detrimental to your respiratory system, according to a new report. 

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Researchers from universities in Norway recently conducted a study, published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, to determine how cleaners may contribute to lung decline over time. 

"While the short-term effects of cleaning chemicals on asthma are becoming increasingly well-documented, we lack knowledge of the long-term impact," senior author Cecile Svanes said in a statement. "We feared that such chemicals, by steadily causing a little damage to the airways day after day, year after year, might accelerate the rate of lung function decline that occurs with age."

For their assessment, the researchers examined the lungs of more than 6,200 women and men from 22 health institutions, following them over a course of 20 years. During that time span, the participants were asked if they cleaned their homes and if they were professional cleaners. If so, they were also required to record how much they used typical liquid cleaning products. 

After analyzing the results, they found that women who cleaned as little as once a week had an accelerated lung decline risk. In fact, they said using cleaning products for 20 years is equivalent to smoking 20 cigarettes a day for 10 to 20 years for women. Men who cleaned did not see the same decline as women who cleaned.

The scientists said they were initially shocked by the results. "However, when you think of inhaling small particles from cleaning agents that are meant for cleaning the floor and not your lungs, maybe it is not so surprising after all," they wrote.

They believe the cleaning chemicals irritate the mucous membranes that line the airways, which causes damage. To lower the risk, the British Lung Foundation suggests looking for products that are labeled "allergy friendly" as they have fewer chemicals. 

While the researchers acknowledge their study included very few people who did not clean, they said their findings are strong. 

"The take-home message of this study is that in the long run cleaning chemicals very likely cause rather substantial damage to your lungs," they wrote. "These chemicals are usually unnecessary; microfiber cloths and water are more than enough for most purposes.”

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Broward County Sheriff visits Parkland school shooting victim in hospital

Published: Sunday, February 18, 2018 @ 8:57 PM

Victims of the Florida High School Mass Shooting

The Broward County sheriff said he was honored to visit a young student who survived the Feb. 14 South Florida school shooting that's left a community reeling. 

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The Broward County Sheriff's Office published a photo of Sheriff Scott Israel holding the hand of Anthony Borges, 15, in his hospital room.

"Fortunately, he is recovering -- but has a long road ahead with more surgeries needed," the Sheriff's Office posted. "Please join us in praying for the swift recovery of Anthony and all the other victims of this horrific criminal act."

The Sheriff's Office said in the Facebook post that Borges was shot five times during the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

Seventeen people, including students and staff, were killed in the shooting.

Nikolas Cruz, 19, who admitted to the shooting, remains in custody at the Broward County jail after being ordered held without bond on 17 counts of premeditated murder.

As memorials for the shooting victims continue, students are demanding tighter gun control and walkouts are being planned in the wake of the tragedy. 

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