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5 local trending stories to read before going back to work or school

Published: Monday, January 15, 2018 @ 4:16 PM

Miami Co. man charged with murder after wife found dead inside car

While you were catching up on sleep, spending time with loved ones or marching to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. over the long weekend, you might have missed a few big stories.

Here are five stories were trending to catch up on before heading back to work or school: 

Hamilton High School coach accused of sexual misconduct

Suspended Hamilton High School teacher and coach Hilary Dattilo was hired for the current 2017-18 school year last spring and started her job teaching science and working as a girls volleyball coach in August 2017.

The alleged crimes involve a female student, and the alleged encounters occurred off school property, according to Hamilton police.

Prior, the 30-year-old Dattilo worked as a substitute instructor at Cincinnati Hebrew Day School from 2014 to 2016 and was employed at the Mayerson Jewish Community Center’s (JCC) aquatics program.

» READ THE FULL STORY: Hamilton coach accused of sexual contact worked for other schools

Flyin’ to the Hoop: A Dayton-Indiana connection

Jerome Hunter might have been the one that got away from the University of Dayton. That’s because he followed former Flyers coach Archie Miller to Indiana.

A high-flying 6-foot-7 forward, Hunter put up a game-high 23 points, five rebounds, three steals and a block on Princeton in Pickerington North’s 51-38 win during Saturday’s 16th Annual Premier Health Flyin’ to the Hoop at Fairmont’s Trent Arena.

» READ THE FULL STORY: Archie’s prized Hoosiers’ recruit shines at Flyin’

Parents scrambling to find new schools for their kids

Parents of more than 1,000 students across the region are scrambling to find new schools for their children just days away from what could be the largest charter school failure in state history.

The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, an online school, notified parents this week they could suspend operations Jan. 19 as they work out issues with their sponsor, Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West.

» READ THE FULL STORY: Charter school failure could be largest in history

Wife found shot in vehicle, husband charged with murder

Randy A. Freels, 57, was booked into the Miami County Jail after special response teams from the Miami County Sheriff’s Office, Troy police and Piqua police took him into custody around 10:30 p.m. Friday at his home.

Samantha Freels, 52, was found dead from a single gunshot wound to the chest in a vehicle that was crashed in a creek in the area of Ohio 55 and Elleman Road around 3 p.m. Friday.

Deputies believe Samantha Freels was shot to death in her vehicle very close to where she crashed, officials said. Deputies also said a blue Dodge pickup registered to Randy Freels went off the road near the crash scene.

» READ THE FULL STORY: Wife found shot, husband charged with murder

Staple of Dayton music scene dies

Mick Montgomery — a longtime staple of the Dayton music scene and former owner of the Canal Street Tavern — died Saturday morning of natural causes at Kettering Medical Center. He was 71.

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What is the UV Index and how to your protect your skin

Published: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 @ 3:58 PM

Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs explains what the UV Index is and why it's so important during the spring and summer months.

During the spring and summer months you may often hear meteorologists talking about the strength of the UV index on any particular day. The UV index is a scale used to measure the strength of sun's UV rays and how it could have an impact on the average person. The higher the UV index, the more likely someone could develop a sunburn.

 WHIO Live Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Here are a few ways to protect yourself

--Limit sun exposure during the hours of 10am -4pm

--If outdoors, seek shade and wear protective clothing, hats and sunglasses

--Apply sunblock of SPF 30+ every two hours, even on cloudy days and after swimming

--Watch out for bright surfaces, like sand and water, which reflect UV and can increase exposure

 LISTEN: Cloudy with a chance of Podcast: A podcast for weather fans 

According to the United States Environment Protection Agency there is something called the "shadow rule" that can help detect how much UV exposure you may be getting. If your shadow is taller than you are (early morning and late afternoon), your UV exposure is likely lower. If your shadow is shorter than you are (around midday), you are being exposed to higher levels of UV radiation. 

The UV INDEX will be very high to high now through the weekend. Perhaps a little lower for Sunday and Monday with more clouds cover and the chance for showers and storms at times. 

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Death of Huber Heights man found in Springfield park ruled a homicide

Published: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 @ 11:59 AM

A Huber Heights man's body was found in a Springfield park Tuesday morning. His death has been ruled a homicide.

Update@2:23 p.m.:

During a press conference Wednesday afternoon to discuss Holt’s killing, Springfield Police Chief Lee Graf officially ruled Holt’s death a homicide.

READ: Springfield police investigate body found in Mabra Park

Graf also reached out to the public for help in the investigation. Holt was last seen alive about 11 p.m. Monday, so anyone who may have seen him after that time or came in contact with him should contact Springfield police investigators with any information they have, Graf said. 

Graf also said investigators still have not made a direct connection with Holt’s killing and the home invasion in Huber Heights where two boys, including one of Holt’s sons, was tied up. Until such connection is made, the cases will investigated separately, he said. 

There are no suspects or persons of interests in either case, officials in Springfield and Huber Heights said.

 RELATED: Teen bound in Huber Heights, father's body found in Springfield park

First report:

Springfield police are continuing their investigation after a body was found at a Springfield park Tuesday morning.

Huber Heights police are also continuing an investigation into an incident hours before at the man’s home in that city.

Cedric Holt Jr. was found dead at Virgil Mabra Park in Springfield.

He is the father of one of two teenage boys who were tied up in a home invasion in Huber Heights on Tuesday morning. Other than the relationship between Holt and one of the boys, there’s no connection between the home invasion and Holt’s death, said Sgt. Charles Taylor of the of the Huber Heights Police Department. 

“We’re still ... just over 24 hours involved in this. So we’re still looking into everything,” he said. All stones will be looked under. And we’re going to continue to canvas the neighborhood, ask questions to anybody and anyone that’s willing to talk.”

Woman killed in hit-and-run motorcycle crash, man arrested

Both police departments are releasing limited information. Springfield police plan on hold a press conference today at 2 p.m.

Here is what we know now:

Initial phone call

Springfield police were called to the 1400 block of Oakleaf Avenue on Tuesday morning, according to a Springfield police report.

There they met a man mowing the park’s grass who said he found a body, the report says.

“The victim was found face up with his head to the north and feet to the south,” the police report says. A park employee who called 9-1-1 said the body was in a car.

Springfield Fire Division personnel told police the man, later identified as Cedric Holt Jr., was dead.

Suspicious death

The death is considered suspicious, the Clark County Coroner’s Office said. The cause and manner of death were not yet determined.

A Springfield police report describes the death as unspecified.

EXTRA: What we know: Virgil Mabra Park in Springfield

No arrests

A news release from the city of Springfield on Tuesday evening says no arrests have been made in the incident, and anyone with information is asked to call 937-324-7685.

Taylor said Wednesday that detectives are still working the case.

“As far as our home invasion we are still looking into everything,” he said.

Anyone with information about the home break-in can call the Huber Heights Police Division at 937-233-1565.

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Alcohol, tobacco more dangerous than many illegal drugs, study finds

Published: Tuesday, May 22, 2018 @ 5:30 PM

Alcohol, Tobacco More Dangerous Than Many Illegal Drugs

Legal drugs, such as tobacco and alcohol, cause significantly more harm to people globally than illegal ones, a new international study suggests. But researchers say that’s not surprising, considering the varying prevalence of each.

>> Read more trending news 

The research, which was published this month in the journal Addiction, found that combined tobacco and alcohol use cost more than a quarter of a billion disability-adjusted life-years worldwide. Illegal drugs on the other hand, only accounted for tens of millions. A disability-adjusted life year, according to the study, represents the number of years lost due to ill health, disability or early death.

"These findings are not surprising given that legality of the drugs coincides with social norms around drug use as well as use prevalence," Dr. Carla J. Berg, an associate professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education at the Rollins School of Public Health of Emory University, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

>> Related: One woman in 14 still smokes while pregnant — and these states have the highest rates

Globally, one in five adults reported at least one occasion of heavy drinking in the past month and one in seven smokes tobacco, according to the 2015 data used for the study. Conversely, fewer than one in 20 people worldwide were estimated to use illicit drugs in the past year, including amphetamines, opioids, marijuana and cocaine.

But study co-author Dr. Robert West of University College London pointed out that the United States and Canada had among the highest rates of dependence on opioids (650 cases per 100,000), cocaine (301 cases per 100,000) and marijuana (749 cases per 100,000 people), according to U.S. News and World Report. Overall, the rates of marijuana and opioid dependence were about three times higher than the rest of the world.

>> Related: This common household chore is as damaging as smoking 20 cigarettes a day

"The U.S. has major research agendas moving forward to advance our knowledge-base in order to inform policy and practice regarding how to best address this problem," Berg said. "Surveillance is a key part of monitoring the problem, informing interventions, and evaluating policies and practices that are adopted and implemented."

Berg said that broad international studies, such as this one, help researchers better understand differences in drug use across countries.

"Not all countries regulate alcohol and tobacco in similar ways nor have policies or practices in place that aim to address specific aspects of behavior related to alcohol and tobacco use," Berg said.

>> Trending: Air pollution during pregnancy tied to high blood pressure in kids, study suggests

"Social norms are also quite different in relation to the use of these substances, particularly among different genders within a country or within other sub-populations," she explained. "Understanding these different multilevel factors and their impact on alcohol- and tobacco-related consequences are key to informing how countries like the U.S. should address this critical issue."

Berg adds that this kind of study is "critical" in helping researchers and governments understand the societal and individual costs of substance abuse. It also gives a better picture of how legalization and regulation impact usage and dependence.

"There could be a great deal to be learned from countries or areas of the world with lower prevalence of opioid dependence and areas of the world that have combated opioid dependence successfully," she said. "This speaks to how critical international research is to informing policy and practice."

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School deregulation bill gets dozen amendments, but no vote

Published: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 @ 4:14 PM

            The Ohio House Education Committee is considering both a broad deregulation bill, and a proposal to change the school report card system. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF
The Ohio House Education Committee is considering both a broad deregulation bill, and a proposal to change the school report card system. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF

Wednesday’s expected Ohio House vote on a bill supporters claim will reduce red-tape for local schools did not happen, as the House session was canceled amid Republicans’ continuing struggle to choose a new Speaker of the House.

The House Education Committee did meet Wednesday morning and added a dozen amendments to the bill, but did not yet vote to send it to the full Ohio House.

Senate Bill 216 is meant to eliminate some regulations governing Ohio’s schools, and give districts more flexibility in how they operate.

One amendment affects state testing. Instead of allowing schools to do any mix of paper and online for testing in grades 3, 4 and 5 - as the bill originally suggested - the amendment would allow schools to offer third-grade testing totally on paper (not a mix) if the school board passes a resolution.

RELATED: Bullet-point details of school deregulation bill

Another amendment would require more detailed test-score reporting for subgroups of students based on race, economics, special education status and more. The bill originally said schools with fewer than 30 students in a given category would not have that data on their report card. But some analysts suggested that could lead schools to ignore those groups, so the amendment puts the standard for reporting achievement and progress data back at the original 10-student threshold.

The amendments included several changes to teacher licensure — exempting certain teaching fields from the new “grade-band” rules, expanding a “supplemental license” procedure for teachers outside their licensed grade or subject area, plus tweaks to substitute, career tech and early college teaching rules.

RELATED: State board, proposed law seek changes to school report card

And the amendments push the effective dates of several provisions back to 2019-20, rather than 2018-19 — information requirements for test vendors, district reading improvement plans, teacher evaluation changes, and College Credit Plus textbook changes.

It is unclear when the House will address the bill, which has already been approved by the Senate. House Education Committee Chair Andrew Brenner had said on Tuesday that the bill needed to move quickly if there was any chance of passing it before the legislature leaves for its summer/fall break.

Brenner’s office said the House Education Committee on Wednesday also discussed amendments to House Bill 591, to revise the school report card system, but did not vote on the amendments or the bill itself.

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