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Two killed in separate crashes in Mercer County on Wednesday

Published: Thursday, September 28, 2017 @ 9:49 AM


Two people were killed in separate traffic accidents  in Mercer County on Wednesday, according to the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office. 

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The first crash was reported around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the intersection of U.S. 127 and Howick Road north of Celina, Mercer County Sheriff Jeff Grey said in a media release. 

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Grey said an initial investigation found a 2007 Pontiac, driven by Georgette Zinn, 56, of Van Wert, Ohio, was traveling north on U.S. 127 when she drove left of center and crashed into a 2007 Freightliner truck driven by Mark Cook, 57, of Cook, Ohio. 

Zinn was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Deputies did not say if Cook suffered any injuries. 

Just over two hours later, a second serious crash was reported involving a bicyclist south of Celina. 

Investigators said a bicyclist was traveling south on the Celina Coldwater Bike Path and failed to yield when he crossed St. Anthony Road around 4 p.m. 

The bicyclist, identified as Nicholas J Hemmelgarn, 67, of Coldwater, was hit by a 2001 Ford sedan that was traveling west on St. Anthony Road. 

Hemmelgarn was transported to Mercer Health in Coldwater where he was pronounced dead. 

The driver of the sedan, Wallace McGough, 32, of Celina, was not injured in the crash. 

The fatalities were the fifth and sixth fatal crashes in Mercer County in 2017. 

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Fire causes significant damage to Springfield home

Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 1:53 PM
Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 2:44 PM

Jeff Guerini/Staff
Jeff Guerini/Staff

UPDATE @ 2:45 p.m.: 

A Springfield home suffered significant damage after a fire broke out Tuesday afternoon, according to officials at the scene. 

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The occupant of the home called 911 after the returned home and saw smoke coming from the structure. 

Officials said the cause of the blaze is under investigation, but the structure suffered significant damage. 

It was not known if the house will be deemed a total loss, but investigators said the occupant will be displaced. 

No injuries were reported. 


Firefighters have responded to reports of a house fire on Allen Drive in Springfield Tuesday afternoon. 

Crews were dispatched to the home in the 900 block of Allen Drive around 1:45 p.m. and reported heavy smoke coming from the structure. 

Initial reports indicate the fire appears to have started in the attic and the occupant was able to evacuate. 

We have a crew on the way and we’ll update this page as we learn more. 

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Suspicious device report prompts shelter-in-place at elementary school

Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 2:25 PM

Contributed Photo/Clark County Sheriff's Office
Contributed Photo/Clark County Sheriff's Office

An elementary school in Clark County was placed on shelter-in-place while deputies investigated a suspicious package report Tuesday morning. 

>>Firefighters battle house fire in Springfield

Deputies responded to a report of a suspicious package strapped to a traffic control device in front of Park Layne Elementary School at 12355 Dille Road around 8:35 a.m. Tuesday, according to a media release from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office. 

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“After a visual inspection of the package, along with information gathered from the office at the school, it was discovered that the package was directly related to repair work completed by the Ohio Department of Transportation,” investigators said in the release. 

Officials from ODOT responded to the scene and confirmed it was a cover needed for “temporary repair work” on the traffic control device, according to investigators. 

The school was placed on shelter-in-place while the incident was investigated. 

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Fairfield apartment building a total loss after fire

Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 11:07 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 2:09 PM

Apartment building building destroyed by fire in Fairfield

UPDATE @ 1:55 p.m.:

The early morning fire at the Camelot East Apartments appears to be accidental, said Fairfield Deputy Fire Chief Randy McCreadie. 

But fire investigators, as well as an insurance investigator for the apartment building, are continuing their investigation as to the cause and source of the fire, he said. 

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McCreadie said they are in the process of boarding up the building to keep the weather out and put a safety fence around the building to keep people out of the area. 

The initial report indicated the fire started in a third-floor utility closet. 

“We’re leaning toward that area, but nothing definitive has been determined,” McCreadie said.Investigators will continue their work in the morning.

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UPDATE @ 9:53 a.m.: 

Investigators are now at the scene of an early morning fire trying to figure out where and why a fire destroyed at least one apartment unit.

Crews responded to Camelot East Apartments in the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive after being dispatched at 12:18 a.m. Tuesday after a resident smelled something burning and reportedly found a fire in a utility room.

“We don’t have a cause at this time,” said Fairfield Deputy Fire Chief Tom Wagner. “Fire investigators are on the scene now digging through the debris, so we don’t have a definitive cause at this time of what started it.”

Building 1450 appears to be close to a total loss, Wagner said, as the roof is completely off the building. 

Crews responded to Camelot East Apartments in the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive in Fairfield just after midnight Tuesday. A resident smelled something burning and reportedly found a fire in a utility room.(NICK GRAHAM/STAFF)

“The roof is burned away, and there’s about a foot of water (in building 1450),” Wagner said. “We immediately had to go a defensive position because it was through the roof when we go there.”

As a precaution, officials evacuated building 1452, shut the power off at the building, and removed the ceiling on the third floor to ensure the fire did not spread to that building.

Wagner said the fire was contained to building 1450.

Wagner said the Red Cross had taken care of the displaced residents, but did not know the exact number of residents living in the 24 total units in the two buildings.

Colerain and Forest Park fire departments provided mutual aid.

UPDATE @ 5:50 a.m: 

About 35 people were displaced and two dozen apartment units were damaged after a fire occurred at an apartment complex in Fairfield Tuesday morning, according to our partners at WCPO. 

Crews responded to Camelot East Apartments in the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive around 12:30 a.m. after a resident smelled something burning and found a fire in the third floor utility room.

A total of 24 units were impacted, 12 as a result of the fire, and the other 12 due to utilities in the complex being shut off, according to the American Red Cross, who assisted the displaced residents. 

Fairfield firefighters worked to control the heavy fire for over 2 hours with assistance from Forest Park and Colerain Township Fire Departments. 


Crews responded to the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive on fire reportedly coming from the third floor of an apartment building Tuesday morning, according to Fairfield police.

Initial reports indicate smoke and flames were showing around 12:25 a.m., prompting crews to evacuate the building.

We will continue to update this story as additional details become available. 

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WATCH: Crash at Hillcrest and Catalpa caught on camera

Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 10:19 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 10:38 AM

Accident at Hillcrest and Catalpa

UPDATE @ 10:40 a.m. 

At least one, possibly two, suspects have been taken into custody following a crash at the intersection of Hillcrest Avenue and Catalpa Drive in Dayton. 

Initial reports indicate at least two people fled from the scene after the crash, prompting a foot pursuit by deputies and officers. 

Man apprehended on Cherry Street

One person is in the back of cruiser at the scene of the crash. A second person was reportedly taken into custody on Cherry Street, according to scanner traffic and our crew in the area. 

We’ll update this page as we learn more. 

One man was taken into custody on Cherry Street in Dayton following a crash and foot chase. A second person was reported in custody at the scene of the crash on Catalpa and Hillcrest. (Marshall Gorby/Staff)


Police are searching the area of Hillcrest Avenue and Catalpa Drive in Dayton this morning after at least one person fled from a vehicle police were following, according to initial reports.

There is a crash in the area as well involving multiple vehicles.

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The incident was reported around 10 a.m.

We’re working to gather more information and will update this story as details emerge.

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