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Published: Friday, July 06, 2018 @ 5:53 PM
Updated: Friday, July 06, 2018 @ 7:40 PM
WAYNE TWP., Clermont County — UPDATE @ 7:40 p.m.:
A 7-year-old boy reported missing at Stonelick State Park is safe.
The boy was reported missing around 5 p.m., and crews searched Stonelick Lake for him. However, it turns out the boy left with his mother, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources told our news partner, WCPO-TV in Cincinnati.
A water rescue is underway for a 7-year-old boy at Stonelick State Park.
Rescuers launched boats into the water in the water and are searching for the boy, who reportedly was not wearing a life vest.
Initial reports to media indicated it happened at Caesar Creek Lake.
Published: Monday, July 16, 2018 @ 4:50 PM
Updated: Monday, July 16, 2018 @ 4:50 PM
WASHINGTON — Ohio lawmakers and other U.S. leaders say Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election in the U.S. and took issue with President Donald Trump’s comments Monday during a summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin where the president declined to back his own intelligence services.
“Russia absolutely meddled in our election in 2016. Putin clearly intended to hurt (Hillary) Clinton’s campaign and expected presidency. Russia’s interference is a threat to our democracy and democracies around the world. Putin is not our friend,” Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton said.
Just last Friday, a federal grand jury indicted 12 Russian intelligence officials on charges of hacking Democratic files. The charges were a result of a year-long investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, former director of the FBI.
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, called the president’s comments “troubling.”
“He failed to stand up to Vladimir Putin on some of the most critical security issues facing our country and our allies,” Portman said.
“When given the opportunity, President Trump did not hold President Putin to task for election meddling, for the illegal annexation of Crimea, or for the continued aggression in Eastern Ukraine.
Youngstown-area Congressman Tim Ryan accused Trump of a “disheartening betrayal” to all U.S. service members when he did not challenge Putin on accusations Russian intelligence hacked Democratic e-mails to damage the 2016 presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton.
In a harshly worded statement, Ryan, D-Niles, called Trump’s performance “a disgraceful setback to the United States’ global leadership; an insult to those serving in our intelligence agencies; and a disheartening betrayal of every service member defending the U.S. government’s interests against Russian government hostility.”
Ryan said that “Trump’s appeasement of Putin with denials of Russia’s continued cyberattacks on our nation is pathetic and weak—especially coming just hours after referring to the European Union as a great ‘foe,’ and days after 12 Russians were indicted as part of special counsel Mueller’s investigation.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said “there is no question that Russia interfered in our election and continues attempts to undermine democracy here and around the world.”
“The president must appreciate that Russia is not our ally,” Ryan said. “There is no moral equivalence between the United States and Russia, which remains hostile to our most basic values and ideals. The United States must be focused on holding Russia accountable and putting an end to its vile attacks on democracy.”
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, charged Trump “missed an opportunity” to challenge Putin, adding “the intelligence experts we trust to keep America safe have said that Russia continues to threaten our democracy and our critical infrastructure, and the president missed an opportunity to do something about it.”
“The Ukrainian community in Ohio knows all too well the dangers of unchecked Russian aggression,” Brown said. “We must demand Russia turn over the spies who hacked our election and show Putin we will not put up with threats to our infrastructure that undercut our democratic institutions.”
Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican who may run for president in 2020, tweeted: “We need to be clear. Russia is our foe. Putin is actively trying to hurt our country. America needs to speak with one voice against Russia.”
Rep, Brad Wenstrup, R-Cincinnati, said “Putin's assertion stands opposite the facts from our intelligence community.”
“As the U.S. intelligence community and the House Intelligence Committee investigation concluded, Russia attempted to sow chaos and undermine our democratic institutions,” Wenstrup said. “I don’t believe that Putin will ever admit that his government has attempted to undermine our democratic institutions as well as others.”
Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 3:42 PM
Updated: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 6:48 PM
— Former Republican statehouse candidate Jocelyn Smith, 36, of Fairborn, was indicted on felony and misdemeanor counts related to alleged threats she made during her campaign against State Rep. Rick Perales, R-Beavercreek, during this year’s GOP primary, according to Greene County Common Pleas Court records.
Smith faces a third-degree felony count of extortion and a second-degree misdemeanor count of coercion, according to court records of the secret indictment filed June 15. Smith, who is a registered-nurse case manager at Sheakley Unicomp and a teacher at Fortis College, is scheduled to be arraigned in Greene County Common Pleas Court on July 6 at 1 p.m.
RELATED: Perales: My opponent is extorting me
Greene County Prosecutor Stephen K. Haller referred the case to a special prosecutor, Madison County Prosecutor Stephen J. Pronai, to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.
“The indictment against my client, Jocelyn Smith, is a politically motivated witch hunt by the Greene County ‘good-old-boys’ network and a prosecutorial abuse of discretion and power that will be vigorously defended against,” said Smith’s attorney, Ben Swift, in an email Friday. “We look forward to our day in court when all of the true facts will come out.”
Perales, a former Greene County commissioner and Beavercreek councilman, said he just wants to focus on serving his western Greene County 73rd District, which he has represented since 2013.
“There are no winners in this situation. Justice just needs to take its course,” Perales said. “People have to be held accountable for their words and deeds. I remain focused on winning in November.”
See the Facebook Live of Smith’s March 27 news conference
On May 8 Perales defeated Smith 80 percent to 20 percent after bitter primary campaign. Perales faces Kim McCarthy, a Sugarcreek Twp. Democrat, in the Nov. 6 General Election.
During the campaign, Smith alleged that Perales had choked, forcibly kissed, fondled and sexted with her in 2015.
Perales, who is married, admits sending inappropriate sexually oriented text messages to Smith during a brief consensual relationship in early 2015 but denies that he choked, kissed or touched her in any intimate way. Perales said Smith sent him topless photos of herself but that he did not send any sexually oriented photos to her.
Smith denied sending the pictures and said that because she refused to have sex with him Perales would not sponsor a pancreatic cancer specialty license plate bill she supported. State records show Perales did co-sponsor and vote for a bill establishing the specialty plate.
The indictment stems from a complaint accusing Smith of extortion that Perales filed with Fairborn Police in April after Smith held a March 27 news conference in Fairborn. At the news conference, Smith said that if Perales did not resign from the state legislature and withdraw from the Republican primary, she would release texts and other documentation she said proved her allegations.
“Please don’t force me to release the rest of the text messages and other mountains of evidence,” Smith said at the news conference. “I think you know the honorable thing to do is to step down.”
In a May 2 interview Smith called Perales’ extortion complaint “a bogus charge. Perales is very good at writing these false reports.”
Smith ultimately released some sexually oriented texts to local news media but there was no way to verify that they came from Perales, nor did they contain any proof that he had choked, forcibly kissed or fondled her.
Perales questioned Smith’s credibility, saying her story changed multiple times and pointing to court cases involving her.
In 2014, a Warren County judge placed Smith in a pre-trial diversion program on three counts of telephone harassment of a man, according to court records. She completed the program and the case was dismissed in November 2014.
In September 2017 Smith successfully petitioned the court to expunge the case, according to Warren County court records.
In 2015 she obtained a temporary civil protection order against the man in the telephone harassment case, and that protection order was later dismissed at her request, according to Greene County court records.
In a separate court case, a civil protection order was issued in 2009 against Smith by a Clark County Common Pleas Domestic Relations Court magistrate after a former boyfriend accused her of harassing him after they broke up, Clark County court records show. That temporary order was dismissed 17 days later after a hearing in which a Clark County Common Pleas magistrate warned Smith against escalating her behavior.
In 2008 Smith was fired as a Clark County deputy after being accused of showing photos of her nude breasts to male co-workers, pointing pepper spray at an inmate as a joke and having an inappropriate relationship with a former inmate. Smith denied all the charges except the pepper-spray incident but lost her 2009 lawsuit and 2012 appeal alleging race and gender discrimination, and wrongful termination.
Ohio Democratic Party spokeswoman Kirstin Alvanitakis responded to the indictment of Smith by saying, that Democratic Party “candidates are focused on fixing the GOP culture of corruption in Columbus, rather than the unseemly details of their opponents' private lives. That said, we hope Representative Perales has taken the time over the past few months to reflect on how he should interact with constituents moving forward."Tweets by LynnHulseyDDN
Published: Friday, July 13, 2018 @ 9:03 PM
COLUMBUS — Nearly a year after her teenage son was killed in a ride on opening day of the Ohio State Fair, his mother said she will make sure he did not die in vain.
Tyler Jarrell was 18 when he was thrown to his death from the Fireball.
His mother, Amber Duffield, said she is determined her son’s legacy will be saving others.
The 18-year-old had already pledged to serve the U.S. Marine Corps. He’d trained with Columbus police officers, and on July 26, 2017, his mom said he very well could have saved someone else’s life.
“And he would have still taken that seat had he known the outcome,” Duffield said.
The ride passed an inspection that morning, though investigators later learned the arm had major corrosion.
“Really right now, it’s not a blame game. It’s more about what are we going to do to make it better?”
Her solution is House Bill 631: Tyler’s Law.
This would require more training for ride inspectors and assign a minimum number of inspectors to every ride.
“It’s really, truly about getting that trust back we lost,” Duffield said.
The next couple weeks will be busy as Duffield works to honor her son. She is certain that in his memory she can help spare others the pain she has felt.
Duffield will be at the opening day of the fair this year.
Published: Friday, July 13, 2018 @ 12:57 PM
Updated: Friday, July 13, 2018 @ 12:57 PM
CINCINNATI — A Democrat seeking to flip Ohio’s 1st Congressional District in November says he won’t support U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi for Speaker if the party regains control of the House of Representatives.
Cincinnati’s Aftab Pureval, who grew up in Beavercreek, has joined a growing list of Democratic congressional candidates who are distancing themselves from the House minority leader from California. Pureval told The Cincinnati Enquirer that he believes there should be a new generation of leadership as “Washington is broken.”
The 1st District includes all of Warren County and part of Hamilton County.
The 35-year-old former lawyer for Procter & Gamble is challenging incumbent Republican Rep. Steve Chabot in the November election. Chabot is seeking a 12th term in the traditionally Republican district.