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Cold Case Project: Still no trace of missing pregnant woman

Published: Tuesday, March 26, 2013 @ 10:47 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 26, 2013 @ 10:47 AM

Nikki Lyn Forrest was 4 and a half months pregnant when she vanished.

More than 2  years later, Piqua police still don’t know what happened to Forrest or the baby she was carrying. They also don’t know the identity of the people who turned Forrest’s purse in to a nearby pharmacy.

“We would like to talk to the people who found the bag,” said Piqua Deputy Chief Tom Christy. “We think that’s a critical part of an investigation that’s lacking.”

Forrest, 19, who had been somewhat transient during the previous year, disappeared Sept. 25, 2010. That day, she had two arguments in two Miami County cities, one in Piqua and one in Troy.

The first argument was with a friend of her late mother. Forrest had been staying at the woman’s home on Piqua’s Young Street. The argument was about the rules Forrest was to respect to stay there, and Forrest responded by packing her things and leaving, according to Piqua Police.

It’s unknown how she travelled the eight miles to the northern part of Troy, but she arrived there later that same evening. She stopped by a girlfriend’s place on Trade Square West, then walked to the home of an ex-boyfriend about three blocks away. That man reported that they argued about her plans for the two of them to move away from the area. Then, while the two were in his driveway, a blue car picked her up and she left, he told police.

That is the last reported sighting of Forrest, who was midway through a high-risk pregnancy that required she take daily medication.

That medication was found days — it’s not exactly clear when — later in her shoulder bag, along with her identification card, a food stamp card and some other personal items. The people who found the bag saw the prescription issued by the pharmacy at the Covington Avenue Kroger in Piqua, and took it there. The pharmacy called Forrest’s emergency contact, who then contacted police.

Police have never identified the people who dropped off the bag and still hope they come forward. They told Kroger employees that they found the bag on a covered bridge on Eldean Road, off County Road 25-A, just north of Troy and five miles from where Forrest was last seen.

But the exact location is unknown, though police have searched the areas around Eldean Road. They have contacted other states to check for birth records. They obtained Forrest’s cellular phone records, but it hasn’t been used since she vanished. A waitress at a Waffle House, Forrest never picked up her last paycheck.

Christy said that there were several people that he hoped would cooperate with police, including the ex-boyfriend, who stopped talking after making his initial statement. Thomas said that Forrest was not known to police before she went missing, but a number of her acquaintances were.

The day she vanished, Forrest also texted Tammy Weddington, her step-mother who had custody of her from the time she was 12. Weddington said Forrest indicated she was OK and that she and a friend were probably moving out-of-state.

Weddington told the Dayton Daily News last year that she persuaded her ex-husband to give her custody after Forrest’s mother died and he appeared unable to handle her. She said that Forrest was a good student involved in band, choir and other activities, but when she turned 18, in November of her senior year, she announced that she no longer wanted to live with Weddington.

Within the past month, police received what they hoped was a good tip: it was about a woman who used the names Nikki Lyn, the same first and middle names Forrest, but a different last name. She matched the general description of the missing girl, and frequented a Cincinnati-area business. But police quickly determined that it the person was not Forrest, Christy said.

Christy said police will look into any information or tip, and that hopes a new a new service on the department’s website will encourage people to come forward. By clicking on “Submit a Tip,” people can send texts or emails anonymously. Police can also respond and ask questions, though without knowing where those questions are being sent – so that the original person’s anonymity is protected, Christy said.

People can also call Crime Stoppers at 937-615-TIPS (8477).

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Kessel Run hits hyperdrive to build combat software

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:19 AM


            Maj. Gen. Sarah Zabel, the Air Force s director of Information Technology Acquisition Process Development at the Pentagon, cuts the ribbon for the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab opening in Boston May 7, 2018, with Victoria Galvin, KREL s chief business officer, Capt. Bryon Kroger, KREL s chief operating officer and Adam Furtado, KREL s chief product officer. Col. Don Hill, right, represented the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center s Battle Management Directorate, which oversees sustainment and upgrade of Air Operations Centers throughout the world. The KREL space will house teams of Airmen tasked to create software specifically for use in AOCs. (U.S. Air Force photo/Todd Maki)
Maj. Gen. Sarah Zabel, the Air Force s director of Information Technology Acquisition Process Development at the Pentagon, cuts the ribbon for the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab opening in Boston May 7, 2018, with Victoria Galvin, KREL s chief business officer, Capt. Bryon Kroger, KREL s chief operating officer and Adam Furtado, KREL s chief product officer. Col. Don Hill, right, represented the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center s Battle Management Directorate, which oversees sustainment and upgrade of Air Operations Centers throughout the world. The KREL space will house teams of Airmen tasked to create software specifically for use in AOCs. (U.S. Air Force photo/Todd Maki)

BOSTON — Thirty active duty Airmen, Air Force civilians and contractors gathered in a shared workspace downtown May 7, for the opening of the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab, where they will build the next generation of combat software.

WeWork’s shared innovation space in Boston’s North End is usually home to constantly shifting startup companies, but listen closely to the T-shirt-and-jeans-wearing Airmen now milling around its fully stocked kitchenette. Instead of compound annual growth rate, or return on investment, they use terms like kill chain integration and battle damage assessment. This shared space, occupied by a smattering of startups, will also serve as the Air Force’s KREL.

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“It’s one thing to say you’re going to do business differently,” said Maj. Gen. Sarah Zabel, the Air Force’s director of Information Technology Acquisition Process Development at the Pentagon. “But look around and you can see that these Airmen are learning. They’re building actual products, and they’re writing the book on how to be combat engineers for the information age.”

Zabel cut the ribbon for the 90-seat facility, complete with open floor plans, paired workstations and small, private offices where teams tackle technological hurdles faced by warfighters. Some of the Airmen now working in KREL served in air operations centers, where at the time complex plans for refueling operations were written by hand, transcribed into common office applications not designed for the task, or shouted across a busy room.

“I’ve never seen anything like this project in 16 years with the Air Force,” said Tech. Sgt. Steven Wingrove, an analyst with the 324th Intelligence Squadron at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, who is on temporary assignment to KREL. “Purposely designing applications, so that systems work for us, is so important. I volunteered to come here because I really think there’s an opportunity to impact combat. That’s at the center of what we’re doing.”

Wingrove, like many at KREL, has a technology background. He codes on the side, and applied his HTML and Javascript knowledge to improve his unit’s SharePoint site. In the Air Force, where he’s a valuable asset, only about 300 Airmen are dedicated software engineers.

Project Kessel Run is managed by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Battle Management Directorate at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts. AFLCMC oversees sustainment and upgrade of the Air Operations Center.

The AOC weapons system consists of a series of applications, computer functions and Airmen who orchestrate combat airpower. The AOC 10.1 team sustains the fielded baseline and keeps existing systems functional, which allows Kessel Run personnel to focus on modernization. Project Kessel Run’s initial focus was improving the AOC that oversees most air combat in the Middle East. Now they are expanding to the entire AOC Enterprise across the globe, to include an eight-region cloud platform and the stand up of 10 additional application teams by the end of the year.

“We’re all consumers of this software,” said Michael, a government civilian intelligence analyst at the 15th Intelligence Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia, on his first day at KREL. “Sometimes your job is just to make a system that is 15 years old work for you today. Hopefully, we’re starting down the road of building better systems that we can go forward and use ourselves.”

Michael and Wingrove are both on six-month temporary assignments to Project Kessel Run. They’ll spend a short time in Boston, orienting themselves at the KREL space. Then, they’re paired off with software professionals in Washington D.C., San Francisco, or Cambridge, Massachusetts, who are on contract to train Airmen how to build custom programs. Finally, they’ll come back to KREL to work with fellow trained Airmen at a type of Air Force software factory.

Three Hanscom AFB contracting and program specialists worked a series of Other Transaction Authorities, sole source contracts and small business contracts to get Project Kessel Run off the ground. KREL is the latest step. The space in which Kessel Run Airmen will ply their knowledge includes resources and facilities rivaling the fastest growing software startups, giving Air Force developers access to the tech sector culture that has revolutionized modern life.

The OTA with Pivotal, Inc., which paired Airmen and leading commercial practitioners, began in August 2017. Then, with Airmen ready to “graduate” from Pivotal Labs, the team worked with a software development company called TDMK Digital, which set up the turnkey software development environment at KREL. TDMK subcontracted WeWork’s Boston space, and provided the hardware, digital connections and resources necessary for 90 workspaces at one-year cost to the government of $1.6 million. There is an option to exercise next year for $1.5 million.

“Bottom line is we’ve proved the acquisition side of the house can keep pace with the technology side of the house,” said Kevin Dolan, a Battle Management program manager assigned to Kessel Run. “We’re exclusively supporting this effort, and it’s a real-startup feeling. A year ago there was one product. Since then, we’ve scaled to eight product teams, looking at supporting 18 by the end of the year and more than 30 by the end of 2020.”

The Boston space is modeled after the Pivotal Labs training locations in Cambridge, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., which are home to similar innovation hubs. The Air Force in the Boston offices share space with startups. Major tech firms also deploy small teams to these types of shared workspaces to cross-pollinate with the type of innovation occurring.

“No matter where these Airmen are working, they’re working for combatant commanders and warfighters,” said Zabel. “You can count on these Airmen to be in contact with the warfighter’s edge, and to see where a difference can be made. They can see and articulate what needs to change, and they have the will, and now the experience, to see it done.”

Note: Michael’s last name is withheld for operational security reasons

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2 injured, 1 in custody after shooting at Indiana middle school

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:18 AM
Updated: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:18 AM

Shooting at Indiana Middle School

Two people were injured Friday morning in a shooting reported at Noblesville West Middle School in Indiana.

>> Read more trending news

Update 10:20 a.m. EDT: Indiana State Police confirmed two people were taken to a hospital after authorities responded Friday morning to reports of an active shooter at Noblesville West Middle School.

Officials said a suspect was in custody after the shooting. Authorities were expected to provide additional details at a news conference later Friday.

Original report: Authorities confirmed around 9:40 a.m. that police had a suspect in custody after responding to a report of an active shooter situation at the middle school.

Check back for updates to this developing story.

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WATCH: This new $600M facility is Middletown’s largest project to date, and you need to see how MASSIVE it is

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:07 AM

New natural gas-fueled electric plant in Middletown small compared to older coal facilities

The ribbon was just cut for the new $600 million NTE Energy Middletown Energy Center on Oxford State road.

The new electric generation plant stands in stark contrast the hulking steel plant across the road. The fuel to run this new plant does not need to be stored or processed on site, which allows for a much smaller foot print and much less infrastructure.

RELATED:  FIRST LOOK: Massive energy plant opens in Middletown

Construction has finished on NTE Energy’s Middletown Energy Center. The natural gas-fueled power plant represents more than a $600 million investment for the city. The facility will be able to generate 475 megawatts of electricity, enough energy for 400,000 homes, according to company officials. TY GREENLEES / STAFF(Ty Greenlees)

The Middletown Energy Center is fueled by natural gas and is said to be among the cleanest and most efficient natural gas fired power plants in the United States, according to company officials. 

RELATED: Middletown’s largest development in history opening

Construction has finished on NTE Energy’s Middletown Energy Center. The natural gas-fueled power plant represents more than a $600 million investment for the city. The facility will be able to generate 475 megawatts of electricity, enough energy for 400,000 homes, according to company officials. TY GREENLEES / STAFF(Ty Greenlees)

But don’t let the small size fool you. This power plant puts out 475 megawatts which is enough to power 400,000 homes.

RELATED:  Downtown development, new construction marked Middletown’s 2017

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Kings Island is getting a new restaurant AND a new reality TV star chef

Published: Thursday, March 29, 2018 @ 4:30 AM
Updated: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:12 AM

Kings Island shows off new food items available at the Park this season.

Kings Island is getting two new culinary additions for the 2018 season, which began on April 14.

A new restaurant is being added to the park’s line-up: Coney Bar B Que. This new, fast casual restaurant will feature barbecue favorites including smoked St. Louis-style ribs, pulled pork, rotisserie chicken and Queen City Sausage along with a fresh selection of side dishes.

MORE: Mason’s first craft brewery — 16 Lots Brewing — makes it debut

The location is included in the Coney Mall area of the park, next to the Scrambler. The restaurant’s architecture and theming will pay tribute to the early days of Kings Island and Coney Mall.

Covered outdoor seating areas will feature views of Coney Mall and the Grand Carousel.

Also, taking the executive chef position at Kings Island is James Major, a two-time winner of the Food Network’s “Chopped” reality TV cooking contest and contestant on Alton Brown’s “Cutthroat Kitchen.”

Major is a Culinary Institute of America Certified Pro Chef II, a U.S. Navy veteran and Ohio native. He previously served as executive chef at Great American Ball Park and Funky’s Catering.

MORE: This new restaurant spent nearly a year renovating a former Bob Evans, and it will open soon

“Kings Island has always been a place where family memories are made,” Major said. “It’s an honor for me and my team to have the chance to be creative and provide great food experiences that add to those memories and the fun guests have during their visit.”

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