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Witness: Hamilton homeowner had committed arson before

Published: Friday, November 10, 2017 @ 9:00 AM

Lester Parker and William Tucker Trial - Day 4

A witness in the case of two men charged with arson and murder in the fire that killed Hamilton firefighter Patrick Wolterman says the homeowner had set fire to the Pater Avenue house once before.

Lester Parker, 67, and his nephew William “Billy” Tucker, 46, are on trial for the fire at Parker’s Pater Avenue home that killed Wolterman on Dec. 28, 2015.

MORE: Text allegedly sent by Hamilton arson suspect on morning of fire: ‘Done with the job’

James Parker (no relation to Lester Parker), who is the ex-boyfriend of one of Parker’s daughters, told the jury Thursday that Lester Parker had set fire to the Pater Avenue home once before, in the summer of 2015, in order to collect insurance money.

Tucker, he testified, was also a part of that incident.

MORE: Woman tells jury she gave ride to Hamilton arson suspect for $300 in pills

Defense attorney Tamara Sack questioned James Parker about why he never mentioned Tucker during his written statement to police.

James Parker said he just remembered that detail last week.

MORE: Prosecutor: Hamilton man planned to burn home for insurance money

Defense attorney David Washington questioned James Parker about having a possible vendetta against Lester Parker because he had once evicted him.

James Parker said he had no ill will toward Lester Parker, but contacted police after learning about the December 2015 fire.

MORE: Daughter told police family may have been part of fatal Hamilton arson

Prosecutors say Lester Parker was “under water” financially in December 2015 and hatched a plan to have the house set on fire for insurance money while he and his wife were in Las Vegas. According to prosecutors, Tucker agreed to light the fire in exchange for payment in pills.

The trial is set to resume Monday morning.

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Back on the air with Jamie Dupree 2.0

Published: Monday, June 18, 2018 @ 12:15 PM

It was just another newscast this morning for WSB Radio in Atlanta. It was just another newscast on WDBO in Orlando, WHIO in Dayton, WOKV in Jacksonville, and KRMG in Tulsa. But it was much more than that for me, as my voice – my new, computer generated voice – went on the air today, getting me back on the radio for the first time in two years, after my voice was taken away by an unknown neurological disorder.

We call it, Jamie Dupree 2.0, a voice synthesized from recordings of my past news stories, which when paired with a special text-to-speech program, will allow me to go back on the radio,

I tuned in from home to see how it would sound. It all seemed so normal. The anchor reading the intro. “More from Jamie Dupree in Washington.” And then my story played on the radio, just like up until the spring of 2016.

A few hours later, I got to work, and there was breaking news from the Supreme Court, as the Justices sidestepped a ruling on two cases dealing with gerrymandering of legislative district lines.

It all felt so normal. I typed up my story, fed it out to my stations, and it hit the air.

At home it seemed normal. But at work in the Capitol, when it played out in real time – the moment hit home.

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Heat Advisory in effect today as heat index reaches around 100 degrees

Published: Monday, June 18, 2018 @ 3:34 AM
Updated: Monday, June 18, 2018 @ 12:13 PM

A look at how hot we get and when storms return this week.

Temperatures will climb dangerously high today for anyone doing prolonged activities outside. A Heat Advisory is in effect for the entire area from noon until 8 p.m., and Butler, Clark, Greene, Miami, Montgomery and Warren counties are under a Air Pollution Advisory.

QUICK-LOOK FORECAST

  • Heat index around 100 degrees today
  • Stray shower or storm today
  • More storms this week

RELATED: The UV index explained

DETAILED FORECAST

Today:  Hot and humid afternoon! Temperatures are already in the upper 80s with heat index values in the 90s. Highs should climb to the low to mid 90s this afternoon with the heat index around 100 degrees. The UV index is a 10 which is very high. Sunshine and scattered clouds. Could see a stray shower or storm late this afternoon or tonight mainly north of I-70. Localized heavy rain will be the main threat. Hitting 90 degrees today would be the third day in a row making this stretch a heat wave.  

A stretch of warm days is needed but how warm and for how long?

>> How to prevent heat-related and life-threatening illnesses during extreme heat

RELATED: Cloudy with a chance of podcast

Tuesday: We’ll see passing showers and storms across the far north. It will be another hot and humid day with highs in the upper 8-s with Heat Index values in the mid-90s. There will be sun and scattered clouds. More storms will develop in the afternoon and early evening. A strong storm with wind and hail can’t be ruled out. Localized heavy rain is possible.

RELATED: Live Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Wednesday: There will be some dry time early. It will still be warm and muggy with highs in the mid-80s. It will be partly cloudy as more showers and storms develop in the afternoon and evening. Localized heavy rain is possible.

Thursday: It won’t be as muggy and it will be cooler. We’ll see some sun and scattered clouds with highs around 80. A few showers or storms are possible in the southern Miami Valley.

Friday: It will heat back up as highs reach the mid-80s. It will be muggy. Scattered showers and storms for the afternoon and evening again.

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Cooling centers beginning to open in response to relentless heat 

Published: Monday, June 18, 2018 @ 12:13 PM

Jim Noelker/Staff
Jim Noelker
Jim Noelker/Staff(Jim Noelker)

A number of people are taking advantage of Dayton's designated cooling centers to beat the relentless heat and humidity that has hit the region.

In Dayton, the Greater Dayton Rec Center, the Northwest Recreational Center and Lohrey Recreational center are places where people can beat the heat. 

Download the free WHIO Weather App 

"We have a lot of people that don't have air conditioning or fans, " Nicole Burger, Greater Dayton Rec Center, told News Center 7's Malik Perkins on Monday morning. "When the weather gets hot like this, we need to give them some relief." 

Heat Advisory remains in effect

City of Dayton 

Greater Dayton Recreation Center, 2021 W. Third St., Dayton, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday 

Lohrey Recreation Center and Belmont Pool, 2366 Glenarm Ave., Dayton, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday 

Northwest Recreation Center, 1600 Princeton Drive, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday 

We'll keep working to update this story throughout the day. 

Call our 24-hour monitored line, 937-259-2237, or send your information to newsdesk@cmgohio.com

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Area security firm files $50K lawsuit against Wilberforce University

Published: Monday, June 18, 2018 @ 12:11 PM

A Dayton-area security firm has filed a lawsuit against Wilberforce University.
A Dayton-area security firm has filed a lawsuit against Wilberforce University.

A local security service has filed a lawsuit against Wilberforce University, alleging the school has not paid for services agreed to in a contract.

In the lawsuit, filed on May 29 in the civil division of the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court, Moonlight Security Inc. claims that Wilberforce University breached a contract and owes it $50,350 plus interest.

Moonlight, which is based at 2710 Dryden Road in Moraine, provided the historically black college with security officers and equipment and uniforms to those employees. Each security officer received a salary of $16.90 per hour, according to a copy of the contract attached to the lawsuit.

» RELATED: Wright State pilot program saves students thousands on textbooks

The university and security service entered into a contract on Aug. 15, 2017, according to the lawsuit. Moonlight sent 10 bills to the university but they remained unpaid at the time the lawsuit was filed last month.

This news organization has reached out to a Wilberforce University spokeswoman for comment on the lawsuit.

Wilberforce University is the oldest private historically black college and in recent years the school has had a history of financial problems.

Last year, the university implemented layoffs, furloughs and a 20 percent pay cut for employees. In November 2016 the school slashed $750,000 from its payroll budget in an attempt to right-size itself, then-president Herman Felton said at the time.

In January 2017, Wilberforce University put 10 acres of campus — including two buildings — up for sale for $7 million. The university wanted sell and then lease back the property, senior vice president for finance William Woodson said at the time.

» RELATED: Wilberforce president on MLK and ‘pivotal’ moment that changed America

The school wanted to use money from the possible real estate sale to pay off some of its debt. No sale has been announced since the property was put on the market.

The university was at risk of losing its accreditation from mid-2014 through most of 2015, due to declining enrollment.

The school was issued a “show cause” order from the Higher Learning Commission that was later lifted in November 2015 after enrollment increased by more than 85 percent to around 650 students. If the college had lost its accreditation, its students would not be eligible for federal financial aid.

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