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Friday, June 19, 2015

The 49th annual Festival of the Fish is underway in Vermilion.

We’ll broadcast live from the Festival, between 4 and 6 today.


A Norwalk man is facing up to three years in prison, after pleading guilty to a felony charge of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

41-year-old Mark Urbine entered the plea earlier this week, in Huron County Common Pleas Court. His bond was revoked, and he was taken to the Huron County Jail, to await an August 5th sentencing hearing. Urbine was arrested in January, a month after having sex with a 15-year-old girl.One other note…After prison, Urbine will be classified as a Tier II sex offender, meaning he’ll have to register his address every six months, for 25 years.


No change, in Ohio’s unemployment rate.

According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, it was 5.2 percent in May, the same as April.


Barring intervention by the U.S. Supreme Court, it appears a four-year legal fight between Erie County officials, and former Job and Family Services Director Aaron Voltz is over.

A federal judge has denied Voltz’s appeal, in his wrongful termination suit. The Erie County Commissioners fired Voltz in July of 2011, after a woman accused him of rape. A charge against him was dismissed later in the year, after the alleged victim refused to testify. Voltz then tried to regain his old job, but was denied. He filed suit, and claimed he lost his job, because he’s Hispanic. But a federal judge disagreed, and said there were no signs of bias.


Smokey Road, north of Berlin Heights was closed yesterday afternoon, after a semi-truck got stuck on tracks at a railroad crossing.

Deputies closed the road, between Driver Road and State Route 61, while crews removed the rig from the tracks. All train traffic was suspended as well.


Sunday is Father’s Day.

And Summer, 2015 officially begins at 12:38 Sunday afternoon.


The State of Ohio’s increases to farmland enrolled in the Current Agricultural Use Value Program will be the topic of discussion, during an informational meeting hosted by Huron County Auditor Roland Tkach.

The meeting will be held at 6pm next Wednesday, at EHOVE Career Center. Representatives from Appraisal Research Corporation and Local Government Services will be on hand to discuss the program, and increases in values.


The homestand continues for the Cleveland Indians.

The Tribe will host the Tampa Bay Rays at 7:10 tonight and tomorrow night, and 1:10 Sunday. You can hear all three games on 95.3, WLKR.


Thursday, June 18, 2015

Bond is set at $100,000 for a Milan man accused of sexually assaulting a four-year-old.

21-year-old Kyle Matthew Taylor remains in the Huron County Jail, on a first-degree felony charge of rape. He was arrested Monday, in connection with the alleged early May incident at a home in Norwalk Township. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for next Wednesday, in Norwalk Municipal Court.


A Cleveland man is in the Erie County Jail, facing charges connected to a brief high-speed chase.

29-year-old Tony Bonds was arrested late yesterday morning, for DUI, driving under suspension and failure to comply. According to the highway patrol, the chase began at the Milan exit of the Ohio Turnpike, and wound along parts of routes 250, 13 and 2, with top speeds reaching 90 miles per hour. The chase ended near Applebee’s in Perkins Township, when troopers used stop sticks to flatten Bond’s tires. Troopers said Bonds smelled of marijuana and alcohol.


Houston-based NEXUS Gas Transmission filed the suit earlier this month, in Erie County Common Pleas Court.

NEXUS officials want an injunction allowing the company to finish its surveys, so it can complete its filings with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Most of the residents named in the suit live in the Berlin Heights area.


Father’s Day weekend brings with it Vermilion’s 49th annual Festival of the Fish.

Some highlights: Nashville recording artist Chris Higbee will perform tomorrow night, and fireworks will begin at dusk. Saturday’s highlights include a Sand Castle Contest, the Crazy Craft Race and the Lighted Boat Parade. The Father’s Day Parade will be held Sunday afternoon. For a complete schedule and more information, go to vermilionohio.com.


Another proposed marijuana-legalization amendment has been cleared by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.

DeWine approved the “Cannabis Control Amendment” from the group Ohioans to End Prohibition. It still needs approval from the Ohio Ballot Board, before backers can begin collecting signatures to place the issue before voters. A spokesman for the campaign said the goal is to put it on the 2016 ballot.


We’ll see if the Indians can bounce back from last night’s 17-0 loss to the Cubs.

Tonight’s game begins at 7:10, and you can hear it on 95.3, WLKR.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

As the old saying goes, there’s always next year.

Last night, the Golden State Warriors topped the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97, to win the NBA Finals, four-games-to-two. LeBron James had 32 points, 18 rebounds and eight assists, but it wasn’t enough. Vegas says, the Cavaliers are the odd-on favorite to win next season’s NBA Championship.


Sandusky police are investigating an alleged recent sex offense that occurred at Cedar Point Commons.

It involved a 34-year-old man, and a 22-year-old woman. The victim and the alleged assailant have been interviewed, and charges are pending.


Voters in Norwalk will not see a fire station issue on the ballot this fall.

Last night, city council agreed to send proposed legislation back to a Blue Ribbon Committee, for further review. The issue: whether it’s legal to repay the money from the city’s capital improvement trust fund. The fund has $4.2 million, from the 1972 sale of the old light plant. With voter approval, city officials want to borrow $3.5 million from the account, to construct a new fire station. The issue is expected to be on the March, 2016 ballot.


A new voting system will be discussed, during next week’s special meeting of the Huron County Board of Elections.

The Board will meet at 10am next Wednesday, in the County Administration Building in Norwalk.


The Huron County Commissioners have canceled tomorrow’s 9am meeting.

The next meeting will be next Tuesday.


Tomorrow is when a local casting call will be held, for the CBS TV show “Survivor.”
The first 150 people to sign up at Mojito Bay Bar in Put-In-Bay will be guaranteed a chance to audition. The island bar will host auditions between 2 and 6:30 tomorrow. Speaking of Put-in-Bay, Country Magazine has named the village “The Most Beautiful Small Town” in all of Ohio.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

It’s do-or-die for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Tonight at Quicken Loans Arena, the Cavs will take on Golden State in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. If Cleveland loses, the season is over. But if the Cavs win, the series will be settled Friday night in Oakland, California. We’ll broadcast live “Courtside from the Q” between 7 and 8:30pm. After that, it’s the First Merit Tipoff Show, followed by game time at 9:10 on 95.3, WLKR.


A Milan man is in the Huron County Jail, in connection with the alleged sexual assault of a four-year-old.

After a lengthy investigation, 21-year-old Kyle Matthew Taylor was arrested yesterday by Huron County deputies. He’s currently charged with rape. According to Detective Sgt. Josh Querin, the alleged crime occurred in early May, at a home on State Route 601 in Norwalk Township. Querin said DNA evidence was a key part of the investigation.


Norwalk City Council will meet in regular session, starting at 7:30 tonight.

As always, the meeting will be held in the Norwalk Muni Courtroom. It’s open to the public.


Continued refinery problems are being blamed for the recent spike in gas prices.

Ohio’s current average is $2.83, or 20 cents higher than last month. But, that’s still $1.04 less than this time last year. GasBuddy.com says gas prices should start declining next week, and AAA says supply will outpace demand, which should keep crude oil prices from increasing. Also, by the end of the year, average gas prices are expected to dip to as low as $2.27 a gallon.


A Kalahari employee is facing theft and forgery charges, for allegedly altering tips on receipts.

Deonte Davis of Sandusky was arrested over the weekend. According to reports, Davis changed receipts between late May and early June. Resort officials began investigating, after a guest called to complain about an extra tip billed to her credit card.


Governor John Kasich continues to jet around the country, while he mulls a run for the presidency.

Kasich was in South Carolina yesterday. He’ll be in Michigan, New Hampshire and the state of Washington later this week. Last week, Kasich made stops in Iowa, Nevada and Utah.


The sale of one of Ohio’s largest newspapers is complete.

The deal between Dispatch Printing Company and the New Media Investment Group is worth $47 million. It includes the Columbus Dispatch, two dozen suburban weeklies and seven magazines. The Dispatch Printing Company will retain its broadcast operations.


Last night’s rained-out Indians/Cubs game will be made up August 24th, at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

Monday, June 15, 2015

A wet week is in store, with showers and thunderstorms in the forecast each day.

Some forecast models suggest 2-to-3 inches of rain Wednesday and Thursday.


The Cleveland Cavaliers are on the brink of elimination, after last night’s 104-91 loss to the Golden State Warriors.

Golden State leads the NBA Finals three-games-to-two, with Game 6 in Cleveland tomorrow night. If the Cavs lose tomorrow, the season is over. But if Cleveland wins, the series will end Friday night in Oakland, California. We’ll broadcast live from Quicken Loans Arena, “Courtside from the Q”, between 7 and 8:30 tomorrow night. After that, it’s the First Merit Tipoff Show at 8:30, followed by game time at 9:10.


It appears alcohol was a factor in Friday’s fatal crash in Wakeman Township.

40-year-old Bill Buchanan Jr. of Elyria was killed, when his Jeep hit a ditch and several trees. Buchanan was pronounced dead at the scene. The Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash.


A woman who broke into a home, stole an Ashland County Sheriff’s cruiser then fled on foot is now in jail.

She was arrested early this morning, after walking out of dense woods near Mohican, still cuffed, soaked, scratched and bitten. The woman was first caught late yesterday afternoon, after burglarizing a Loudonville home. She was handcuffed and placed in a cruiser. While deputies searched for more suspects, the woman somehow worked the cuffs to the front, then crawled into the front of the cruiser and took off. She abandoned the cruiser after a mile, and then fled on foot. She’s now facing a number of charges.


Money for a new fire station is on tomorrow night’s Norwalk City Council agenda.

Council will hear the first reading of an ordinance that would ask voters to allow the city to use trust fund money from the 1972 sale of the old light plant, to fund a new fire station. Final approval of the measure could come later this month, or in early July, meaning the issue would likely be on the ballot in November.


It’s Miss Ohio Week in Mansfield.

Various activities will take place this week, leading to the Miss Ohio Finals at the Renaissance Theater Saturday night.


And in Lorain County, the 12th annual Avon Heritage Duck Tape Festival will be held Friday through Sunday.

There will be life-sized Duck Tape sculptures, a Duck Tape fashion show and a parade featuring floats made of Duck Tape.


This Sunday is Father’s Day.

It’s also the first day of Summer, 2015. The new season will officially begin at 12:38pm.

Friday, June 12, 2015

The Golden State Warriors reclaimed home court advantage, with last night’s 103-82 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The series is now tied at two games each. Game 5 of the NBA Finals is set for 8 Sunday night in Oakland, with Game 6 Tuesday night in Cleveland. If necessary, Game 7 will be played a week from today in Oakland. All games will air on 95.3, WLKR.


The Highway Patrol has announced that tonight’s OVI checkpoint will be held from 8-10, along U.S. Route 6, in the city of Vermilion.

It’ll be manned by troopers from the Sandusky patrol post, Erie County Deputies and Vermilion police.


A scary moment, when a Milan woman was pinned between a car and a guardrail.

It happened yesterday afternoon, on State Route 2 in Huron Township. According to reports, 19-year-old Morgan Moore pulled her car off the road after it broke down, and was walking to a safer location. That’s when an SUV swerved to avoid the disabled car, but hit and pushed another stopped car into Moore. She suffered serious leg injuries, and was taken to Firelands Regional Medical Center. The driver of the SUV, Cassandra Moment of Sandusky and her three children suffered minor injuries. She was later charged with assured clear distance.


By a 93-0 vote, a bill protecting the freedom to display flags has passed the Ohio House.

House Bill 18 would prohibit condo and neighborhood associations, mobile home parks and landlords from restricting the display of American flags, service flags and P.O.W. and M.I.A. flags. The bill is now before the Ohio Senate for consideration.


Consumer Reports says when it comes to appliances, ones built in Ohio are among the best made in America.

Among the top appliances listed in Consumer Reports’ July issue: Maytag, Amana and Whirlpool washers made in Clyde. Also listed: Maytag, Amana and Whirlpool dryers made in Marion, KitchenAid dishwashers made in Findlay,  Amana and Maytag freezers made in Ottawa, Ohio, KitchenAid stand mixers made in Greenville, and high-performance blenders made in Strongsville.


A Norwalk man picked the wrong time and place to steal booze.

42-year-old David Hartman was arrested Wednesday night, after swiping a bottle of liquor from Bassett’s Market. Ottawa County Sheriff Steve Levorchick was in the store at the time, and began chasing Hartman, after hearing a store employee telling him to stop. A U.S. Army serviceman joined in the chase, as did a Virginia state trooper vacationing in the area. Hartman was quickly restrained, and taken to jail. He’s currently charged with theft.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

We’ll find out tonight if the Cavs can take a decisive three-games-to-one lead in the NBA Finals.

The Cavs and the Golden State Warriors will tip off at 9:10, at Quicken Loans Arena. You can hear all the action on 95.3, WLKR. A couple of notes…The Cavs are 9-0 at home against the West, and teams that led The Finals three-games-to-one have never lost the series.


The Highway Patrol believes alcohol was a factor in a crash that claimed a Bellevue man.

20-year-old Samuel Stokes died late Tuesday night, when his pickup truck went off York Township Road 278, struck a tree and burst into flames.


Student-athletes at Norwalk High School must earn at least a 1.5 grade point average, to be eligible to play.

The Norwalk Board of Education approved the change this week. The previous minimum GPA was 1.3.


One pro-marijuana group says it’s good to go, while two others are postponing plans to go to voters.

Officials with ResponsibleOhio say the group has more than enough signatures on petitions to place a constitutional amendment on the fall ballot. Officials with Better for Ohio, and Ohio Rights Group say they’ll wait until 2016.


The Ohio State Highway Patrol announced this morning that an OVI checkpoint will be held in Erie County tomorrow evening in cooperation with the Erie County Sheriff’s Department and a local police agency. 

The checkpoint is designed to deter and intercept impaired drivers.The location of the checkpoint will be announced tomorrow morning.


As debate continues over raising Ohio’s minimum wage, new economic research suggests a higher wage shouldn’t hurt employment.

Critics of increasing low-end pay say it prices some workers out of the job market. Ohio’s $8.10 minimum wage is higher than the federal standard of $7.25.Senate Bill 25 was introduced earlier this year, and if passed, would increase Ohio’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour in 2016.


A new cell tower is going up, near Perkins High School.

Florida-based SBA Towers will install it near the baseball diamond. In exchange, the company will provide free lighting for the field, and will pay the Perkins Local Schools $1,000 a month.


Believe it or not, fair season has begun in Ohio. The first fair of the year, the Paulding County Fair runs through Saturday.

A look ahead…The Erie County Fair will be held August 11th-16th.The 2015 Huron County fair will be held August 17th-22nd.

Wednesday. June 10, 2015

The Cleveland Cavaliers are just two wins away from claiming their first-ever NBA Championship.

Last night at jam-packed Quicken Loans Arena, the Cavs topped the Golden State Warriors 96-91, to take a 2-1 series lead in the NBA Finals. Once again, LeBron James led the way with 40 points and 12 rebounds. Game 3 is set for 9:10 tomorrow night. You can hear it on 95.3, WLKR.


No charges have been filed yet, in connection with a crash that injured seven people.

It happened just before 7 last night on U.S. Route 20, near Sand Hill Road in Bellevue. According to the highway patrol, Floridalina Rameriz of Willard turned from a median crossover, and was hit by a semi-truck. Ramirez and a two-year-old passenger were flown from the scene to St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center in Toledo. Five other passengers in van were taken to Fisher-Titus Medical Center.


The William and Julia Reagan All-Sports Complex is now the property of the Norwalk City Schools.

Last night, the board of education accepted the donation from the athletic boosters. That means the school district is now responsible for its operation and upkeep. The complex was paid for, with private funds.


In Erie County, officials are working to make a new sports complex a reality, and they now have the support of State Senator Randy Gardner.

Gardner is in favor of a plan that would allow the county commissioners to raise the county’s so-called bed tax by one percent. The increase would generate about $17 million. It’s not a done-deal. The increase must be approved by the Ohio House and Senate, Governor John Kasich, and at least two Erie County Commissioners. If the plan comes to fruition, a youth sports complex would be built at the former Griffing Sandusky Airport site on U.S. Route 6. It would cater to various sports, including baseball, softball and soccer.


A new fire station was a big topic of discussion, during last night’s meeting of Norwalk City Council.

City officials may tap into $3.5 million of the ‘light fund’, which came from the 1972 sale of the Norwalk’s old light plant. In 40-plus years, no one has requested to use those funds. Voter approval would ultimately be required to use the money. It could appear on the ballot this fall. Norwalk’s current fire station was built in 1912. A new fire station would be built near the corner of Whittelsey Avenue and Franklin Street.


Two streets in Bellevue are being eyed for improvement.

If all goes as planned, some of County Road 302 will be widened and paved. Also set for paving—Walnut Street.


Governor John Kasich is taking his presidential exploratory campaign west.

He’ll meet with Republicans in Las Vegas tomorrow, and then will attend an economic summit in Utah Friday. Kasich was in New Hampshire last week, and is scheduled to appear in Iowa later this month. He could announce a presidential run next month.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The NBA’s championship series has come to Cleveland.

Tonight at Quicken Loans Arena, the Cavaliers will take on the Golden State Warriors in Game 3 of the NBA Finals. A couple of notes…The Game 3 winner in a 1-1 Finals have gone on to win the series 31 of 37 times. The Cavs have won 26 of their last 28 games at the Q. We’ll broadcast live, “Courtside at the Q”, starting at 7. The Tipoff Show begins at 8:30, and game time is at 9, all on 95.3 WLKR.If you’re going to tonight’s game, expect higher-than-normal prices to park, especially close to the Q.If you’re still looking for a ticket…brokers are asking $350 to $32,000.


Police in Sandusky and Perkins Township are investigating the theft of six motorcycles and one car, all stolen during Ohio Bike Week.

None of the bikes have been recovered.The car was found, partially submerged in a pond near Vermilion.


The Sandusky Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol has announced plans to conduct a DUI checkpoint.

More details will be released later this week.


A Bellevue woman is going to prison, for running a meth lab in her home.

38-year-old Kara Hale was convicted of illegally manufacturing drugs, and child Endangerment. Last week, she was sentenced to four years behind bars. Hale was arrested last October, after Bellevue police raided her Hamilton Street home. Her three children, ages 9, 12 and 14 were removed from the home and placed in foster care.


Huron County Veterans Service Office employees will be in Willard this week, to explain various benefits available to veterans.

They’ll be at American Legion Post 514 Thursday, between 1 and 5.Veterans should bring their DD 214 form or discharge papers, and information about their time in the service.


The Ohio Supreme Court has set execution dates, for five Death Row inmates.

Those dates range from October of 2018, to May of 2019.Ohio has not had a lethal injection since January of 2014, when Dennis McGuire struggled and gasped for air during the procedure.


The Norwalk Board of Education’s regular monthly meeting will begin at 7:30 tonight, at Norwalk High School.

Norwalk City Council will meet in work session at 7:30, at Norwalk Municipal Court.

Monday, June 8, 2015

It was the first NBA Finals win in franchise history.

Last night, the Cleveland Cavaliers used overtime to top the Golden State Warriors, 95-93…The victory evened the series at one win apiece. LeBron James scored 39 points, pulled down 16 rebounds and had 11 assists. The championship series moves to Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland for games three and four, tomorrow and Thursday nights. Tomorrow, we’ll broadcast live, “Courtside from the Q”, starting at 7, followed by tip-off at 9.


A weekend crash near Shiloh left one person dead, and injured four others.

72-year-old Karl Kinstle of Greenwich was killed Saturday night, at the intersection of State Routes 13 and 603. His car was hit by a pickup truck driven by 46-year-old Billy Collins of Willard. According to the highway patrol, Collins failed to stop at the intersection. A 69-year-old female passenger in Kinstle’s car was flown from the scene to Akron City Hospital. Collins, a 46-year-old female passenger and a three-year-old male passenger were taken to Med Central in Mansfield.


Two Wyandot County teens wanted in connection with a one-week, three-state crime spree have surrendered.

A 15-year-old girl from Sycamore and a 16-year-old girl from Upper Sandusky gave up Saturday, after trying to swim across the Ohio River, between Ohio and West Virginia. Before that, the two stole a truck and shotgun shells in Ohio, then stole a car in Pennsylvania, then tried to rob a convenience store. Later, the two led West Virginia police on a 12-mile chase, injuring an officer in the process.


Authorities have released the name of a man who fell from a boat, and drowned over the weekend.

65-year-old Glen Reeck of Florida died after falling overboard from a sailboat. His body was recovered early Saturday morning, near East Harbor State Park. Reeck apparently drowned, while participating in the Mills Race regatta.


A former Milan man is facing life in prison without parole, after being found guilty of repeatedly raping a young girl.

Friday afternoon, an Erie County Common Pleas Court jury found 42-year-old Andrew Schnee guilty on eight of 17 counts of rape. Because some of the attacks occurred when the girl was under 10, Schnee is facing a mandatory life sentence, with no chance of parole. He remains in the Erie County Jail, pending formal sentencing. His estranged wife, Kimberly Schnee is facing complicity charges. Prosecutors claim she knew of the sexual abuse, but did nothing to stop it. She’s scheduled to stand trial later this year


Nighttime road work is underway on U.S. Route 250, between Outback Steakhouse and Perkins Avenue.

Crews are repairing curbs, driveways and drainage. Two lanes of traffic will be maintained at all times during daylight hours. The majority of work will take place between 8pm and 8am. It’s all part of the U.S. Route 250 Corridor Improvement Project, which is scheduled for completion in September of 2016.


State Route 60, between the village of New London and State Route 18 is down to one lane, for paving work.

The project will be complete in July.


The area’s final graduation ceremonies took place yesterday.

Edison, New London and Western Reserve seniors received their diplomas. Margaretta seniors graduated Saturday.


It’s a rather dubious distinction, one held by Cuyahoga County for nine consecutive years.

But now, new figures show Richland County has the highest number of foreclosures.