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Kasich reverses his position on gun control, bashes Congress

Published: Sunday, February 18, 2018 @ 11:04 AM

On State of the Union, Gov. John Kasich discusses the recent shooting in Parkland, Fla. and what Congress must do in the wake of it.

In a sharp departure from the views which won him the National Rifle Association’s endorsement in 2014, Ohio Gov. John Kasich said he would support new gun restrictions such as universal background checks and perhaps a ban on the sale of some semi-automatic assault weapons.

During an interview Sunday on CNN’s State-of-the-Union, Kasich expressed support not only for background checks for people trying to buy guns, but also banning what are known as bump stocks, which allow a semi-automatic weapon to be converted into an automatic weapon.

But Kasich went even further on CNN. In the aftermath of the shooting deaths of 17 people last week at a Florida high school, Kasich raised the possibility of prohibiting the sale of semi-automatic weapons such as the AR-15, which was used in last week’s shooting.

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)(Washington Bureau)

Shortly after the CNN interview, Kasich’s aides removed from his campaign web site a page which boasted that as governor, Kasich had “signed every pro-Second Amendment bill that crossed his desk.”

Those bills included measures which made it potentially legal to carry concealed weapons in day-care facilities and college campuses.

John Weaver, an adviser to Kasich who helped direct his 2016 quest for the Republican presidential nomination, said Kasich “is a supporter of the Second Amendment, but like many Americans – if not most – his views have evolved with the dramatic increase in school shootings and mass killings.”

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“We want our leaders to be unafraid to observe, listen and learn,” Weaver said, adding “we urge” President Donald Trump to “follow suit.”

Kasich’s abrupt reversal of his opposition to gun restrictions is yet another sign he plans to seek the presidency in 2020, either as a moderate Republican or independent. But his new stance is certain to infuriate the NRA, which has a major kick in Republican presidential primaries.

Kasich’s most astonishing shift was with the semi-automatic assault weapons. Kasich asked on CNN if anyone would “feel as though your Second Amendment rights would be eroded because you couldn’t buy a God-darn AR-15? These are the things that have to be looked at. And action has to happen.”

In 1994 as a member of Congress, Kasich voted to ban the production and sale of 19 semi-automatic assault weapons. But when he ran for president in 2016, Kasich called the ban “superfluous and we don’t need laws that are superfluous. It didn’t have any impact.”

The ban expired in 2004 when Congress failed to renew it.

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)(Washington Bureau)

Kasich said he has formed a committee “on both sides of the issue” in Ohio to propose recommendations on gun safety. Neither Kasich nor his aides have said who is on the committee.

“If they don’t produce anything, I’ll put my own stuff out,” Kasich said.

David Pepper, chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party, said he was “glad” Kasich is on national TV and “speaking out” on guns.

“Hopefully he’s got some ability to work with the statehouse to find solutions and roll back some of the worst pieces of legislation they pushed through in the last seven years,” Pepper said.

Kasich, who has yet to introduce a bill restricting the sale of guns in Ohio, called on Trump to “lead on this,” adding “this is a great opportunity for commonsense steps that can be taken just in the area of background checks.”

“There should be no ability to do a casual sale without somebody having to find out who they’re selling the gun to and what is involved,” Kasich said. “The president should be for that.”

“When it comes to the issue of mental illness … we need to take a look across the country that, if somebody’s mentally ill, it needs to be reported,” Kasich said. “And if somebody becomes emotionally distraught, it must be immediately examined by local law enforcement or the FBI.”

At least half-dozen bills are already pending in the Ohio House and Senate that call for: safe storage of weapons at home, universal background checks, a prohibition on gun possession by those convicted of domestic violence or subject to a protection order, and other measures, according to Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence.

Conversely, there are at least eight bills pending that would expand gun rights, including shifting the burden of proof in self-defense cases and changing the duty to retreat – a so-called ‘stand your ground’ law, according to the Buckeye Firearms Association.

As governor, Kasich signed bills into law that expanded gun rights, including where concealed weapons permitholders may carry hidden guns.

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Kettering officer shot passenger from stopped vehicle who refused to drop gun

Published: Thursday, June 21, 2018 @ 9:00 PM
Updated: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 3:30 PM

Kettering police officer-involved shooting in Dayton wounds 1

One man was shot and injured in a police officer-involved shooting Thursday night in Dayton:

  • The passenger ran from a traffic stop at Smithville Road and Ewalt Avenue
  • A Kettering police officer chased the armed passenger; the driver was released
  • The officer shot and wounded the passenger when he would not drop the gun 

UPDATE @ 3:30 p.m.: 

The passenger, identified as 31-year-old Wayne Morgan, was shot when he refused the Kettering police officer’s order to drop a handgun he was holding, Kettering Police Chief Christopher “Skip” Protsman said at a news conference held at Kettering Fire Department Headquarters.

Morgan had run from the stopped vehicle, and then broke away from the officer during a confrontation with the officer a short distance from the stopped vehicle.

Protsman said the officer, while giving chase on foot, saw that Morgan had a handgun and ordered him to drop it. Morgan ran into an alley and turned quickly toward the officer, who fired at least once when he thought he was forced to defend himself.

Morgan, hit in the arm and side, remains in a hospital. His injuries are believed to be non-life-threatening.

The driver of the car police stopped was not charged and has been released, the chief said.

The officer’s name is not being released, the chief said.

The city of Dayton will handle the criminal investigation. Kettering police are doing an administrative review of this case. The Kettering officer who shot Morgan is on paid administrative leave.

UPDATE 11:30 a.m.: 

Kettering police Lt. Michael Gabrielson said he’s working on downloading the cameras and radio traffic from the shooting and there might be video and audio available of what happened available later today.

The Dayton Police Department is conducting a separate investigation into the incident, he said.

A Kettering police officer tried to pull over a vehicle at Smithville Road and Ewalt Avenue on Thursday night. Within one minute, at 8:45 p.m., the officer reported shots fired. A call for officer needs assistance was issued to surrounding agencies, according to information from the Kettering Police Department.

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“We can confirm a Kettering officer was involved in an officer-involved shooting as a result of this traffic stop. No further details are being released at this time,” Lt. Gabrielson stated in the release.

The traffic stop was initiated in Kettering, but the shooting happened in Dayton.

“A passenger fled. There was an altercation about a block down the street and a Kettering officer fired at the suspect, wounding him,” said Mark Ecton, Dayton assistant police chief and deputy director.

The driver is in custody, he said.

It’s not clear how many shots were fired or whether the suspect fired at the officer but a weapon was recovered, Ecton said.

>> WATCH: Police shocked during scuffle in Dayton, officers injured

(MICHAEL BURIANEK / STAFF)

The man was taken to a hospital. We’re working to learn more on his condition. The officer was not injured.

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The investigation has not mentioned whether the incident was connected to a hit-and-run crash nearby.

Nick Kauffman of Kettering said he was on his way to a motorcycle ride when his path was blocked by all the police activity.

“It’s pretty wild. You don’t expect to see this stuff outside your back door,” he said.

There were officers from at least three police departments.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com

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ODH issues statewide community outbreak of hepatitis A

Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 5:34 PM

Thirty one cases have been reported in Ohio.

The Ohio Department of Health declared a statewide community outbreak of hepatitis A Friday evening, with 79 hepatitis A cases associated with the outbreak so far this year.

As of June 1, there were 11 cases of hepatitis A in Montgomery County. In 2017 there was one case, and none were reported in 2016, Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County reported.

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Hepatitis A is a vaccine-preventable liver disease that usually spreads when a person ingests fecal matter — even in microscopic amounts — from contact with objects, food, or drinks contaminated by the stool of an infected person. Hepatitis A also can spread from close personal contact with an infected person, such as through sex, according to the ODH.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include fatigue, low appetite, stomach pain, nausea, clay-colored stools and jaundice. People with hepatitis A can experience mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months.

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“Good hand-washing and vaccination are the best ways to prevent hepatitis A in at-risk individuals,” said Sietske de Fijter, state epidemiologist and chief of the ODH Bureau of Infectious Diseases. “If you or someone you know has one or more risk factors for hepatitis A, call your local health department to see about getting vaccinated.”

ODH has provided more than 5,000 doses of hepatitis A vaccine to local health departments.

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Declaring a hepatitis A outbreak ensures ODH access to additional hepatitis A vaccine through the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the ODH said.

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Retired Troy firefighter, and now a co-defendant, accused in rape case

Published: Thursday, June 21, 2018 @ 7:08 PM
Updated: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 10:50 AM

Retired Troy firefighter arrested for rape, son arrested hours later

UPDATE @ 10:20 a.m. (June 22): A retired Troy firefighter and a co-defendant remain in jail on a rape charge, while the former firefighter's son also remains in jail on a weapons charge. 

Jeffrey Paul Covault, 48, had his bond set at $200,000 cash on a single count of rape. His plea of not guilty was taken this morning. 

Thomas Perkins Jr., 54, identified as a co-defendant in the rape case, had his bond set at $200,000 as well. According to authorities, Perkins worked for Jeffrey Paul Covault's lawn care business. 

Aaron Jacob Covault, 24, had his bond set at $22,000 cash during his court appearance via video in Miami County Municipal Court. 

He is detained in the Miami County Jail on charges of weapon possession as a felon (a felony) and weapons possession while intoxicated (a misdemeanor).

Aaron Jacob Covault, left, and Jeffrey Paul Covault

The elder Covault and Perkins are accused of engaging in sexual conduct with an intoxicated 21-year-old woman on March 2, in the parking lot of The Vault, on North County Road 25A, county Prosecutor Tony Kendell said. According to the indictment, the victim was impaired because of a mental or physical condition and the alleged perpetrators had cause of know of that impairment.

Common Pleas Judge Christopher Gee issued a “no contact order” for the elder Covault and Perkins, meaning they are to have no contact with the alleged victim or with each other.

The elder Covault worked as a Troy firefighter/paramedic from May 1996 until he retired April 1, according to city personnel records.

A criminal records check shows he has been convicted for operating a vehicle under the influence in 2011 and for disorderly conduct in 2012.

The father and son were arrested hours apart Thursday from the same home, a residence in the 700 block of County Road 25A, north of Troy.

Aaron Jacob Covault, was arrested at the same address hours after his father was taken into custody. Police said the younger Covault was upset over the arrest of his father and discharged a gun.

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There were no report of injuries.

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Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com

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Woman accused of leaving 8-week-old puppy in hot car in Springfield

Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 1:21 PM

A collection of crime stories from SNS.

A Fairborn woman is charged in Clark County with leaving an 8-week-old puppy in a hot car for about an hour.

April Booth, 41, was charged Thursday with cruelty to companion animal in Clark County Municipal Court. The case was continued until next month, according to court records.

Clark County Dog Warden investigator Beth Hollingsworth began her investigation on June 8 when she was called to Sally’s Beauty Supply on North Bechtle Avenue in Springfield. There, she spoke with witnesses who said a puppy was left in a hot car.

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“(A witness) stated that she and some co-workers were informed of a dog in a hot car,” the affidavit says.

The employees were able to get the dog out of the car using a cracked window, but Hollingsworth said she took the temperature reading and the car was 132 degrees in the backseat.

“(The witness) stated that they had removed the dog from the back seat of the car after noticing the dog for over 20 minutes in the vehicle,” an affidavit says. “She stated that the puppy was panting heavily and after taking her out of the car and bringing her into the store she had been given a bowl of water which she drank the entire bowl.”

The puppy, a gray pit mix named Skye, was taken to the Clark County Dog Shelter, the affidavit said. Booth contacted the shelter to get her dog back and told authorities she was only gone for about 20 minutes, the affidavit says.

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However, law enforcement was able to collect surveillance video of the parking lot that showed she had left the parking space at around 2:50 p.m. and did not return to the car until about 4:12 p.m., the affidavit says.

Hollingsworth said Skye didn’t appear to suffer long-term effects from the incident.

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