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Monday, September 8, 2014

What a difference a day makes.

Friday’s official high in Norwalk was 94.  Saturday’s official high in the Maple City was 72.  After 83 tomorrow and Wednesday, highs will drop to 72 Thursday, 65 Friday and just 62 Saturday.


It’ll be nice, for afternoon baseball in Cleveland.

The Indians and LA Angels will play a makeup game at 1:05 this afternoon. You can hear it on 95.3, WLKR.


A six-year-old boy is dead, the victim of an ATV accident in Bellevue.

It occurred Saturday night on Prairie Road, near Edmonds Road. A preliminary report said the boy died at The Bellevue Hospital. Huron County Sheriff Dane Howard said more information will be released today.


It’s official…

Brian Sears has been named fire chief in Bellevue.  He served as interim chief since last September.  He’s a Bellevue native and a 23-year member of the department.


A notice to all Norwalk residents: The Norwalk Fire Department will be flow testing hydrants in random locations around the city for the next two weeks.

In some areas, testing may turn the water a brownish color. Residents should let it run until it flows clear, before drinking it or doing laundry.


According to a new survey by Amusement Today, Cedar Point is the best amusement park in the U.S., but not the world.

The Sandusky park won the ‘best in the world’ title for 16 consecutive years, but was deemed second-best this year, behind Europa-Park in Germany. But, Cedar Point’s Millennium Force continued its run of Best Steel Roller Coaster. Other results from the poll show Kings Island’s Banshee came in second for best new ride. Kalahari Resort came in second for best indoor water park, behind one in Texas.


Road work continues, on U.S. Route 20 between Monroeville and Bellevue.

The highway is down to one lane of traffic each way. According to ODOT, work should be complete by late September.


Around Ohio…

Investigators are trying to find the cause of a blaze that destroyed a 19th century building in Canal Fulton.  The Exchange Building went up in flames yesterday afternoon.  It was built in 1898.

Ohio motorists are paying a little less for gas.  Today’s statewide average is $3.43, down about two cents from last week.  It’s also a penny less than the nationwide average.

Community colleges across Ohio are now facing a new state funding formula.  New rules that took effect last week will tie funding to graduation rates and course completion, instead of enrollment.



Friday, September 5, 2014

A cool-down is on the way.

After 90 today, highs will be in the low-to-mid 70’s tomorrow and Sunday.


Classes at BGSU-Firelands are canceled due to a power outage.

However, staff members should report back at 1 this afternoon.  Evening programs will proceed as scheduled, including the Carol Crane Youth Theater production of Seussical.


It’s Football Friday and tonight on sister station K96, we’ll be live in Huron as the Tigers take on Bellevue.

Pregame coverage begins at 6:30 with kickoff at 7.  On 95.3 WLKR, it’s John Hay at Norwalk, followed by Monroeville at Edison.  Tomorrow night, we’ll have Tiffin Calvert at St. Paul, and then we’ll join the Ohio State and Virginia Tech in progress.


A $500 reward is being offered, for information leading to the arrests of three suspects who broke into a Bellevue business earlier this week.

The three entered Thomas Steel on Elm Street just after midnight Tuesday. According to reports, they were there for an hour, and damaged doors, cabinets and equipment, before making off with a small amount of cash. The burglary was caught on video. You can see it, on the Bellevue Police Department’s Facebook page. Anyone with information should contact the Bellevue Police Department.


Bellevue Police are looking into an alleged stabbing involving two siblings, ages 11 and 15.

It happened Wednesday at a home on East Center Street.  A domestic violence charge is pending.


A man accused of killing four men in Bucyrus is due back in court one week from today.

41-year-old Donald Wayne Hoffman was in Crawford County Municipal Court yesterday, where bond was set at $10 million. Hoffman is charged with four counts each of aggravated murder and aggravated robbery. He reportedly confessed to killing the men earlier this week.


Huron County Auditor Roland Tkach is encouraging qualified homeowners to submit homestead applications for the next tax year.

The homestead exemption allows homeowners who are 65, or will turn 65 this year, or who are totally and permanently disabled to reduce the value of their homestead property by $25,000 of the market value from property taxes. Any homeowner currently receiving the homestead exemption does not need to re-apply this year. Applications are available online at huroncountyauditor.org.


A new TV series highlighting Huron High School’s football program is debuting today on The Weather Channel.

Last week, a production crew was in Huron, to film segments for ’12 weeks, 12 towns’. The program focuses on passionate high school football towns. Segments will air once each hour, between the :30 and :50 minute mark. It’s not known which hour Huron will be featured. Also, breaking news or weather updates could affect air times.


In terms of fundraising, August was a successful month for Governor John Kasich.

The Republican incumbent raised $1.2 million for his re-election campaign. That’s about 10 times more than Democratic challenger Ed Fitzgerald brought in.


Good news, for some Cleveland Browns fans.

Raycom-owned television stations are back on DirecTV. That includes Channel 19, WOIO in Cleveland, and WTOL, Channel 11 in Toledo. Those channels, along with WUAB, Channel 43 were blacked out earlier this week, due to a contract dispute between Raycom and DirecTV. That means Browns fans who subscribe to DirecTV will be able to watch Sunday’s opener against Pittburgh.


A federal judge has blocked state officials from cutting evening and weekend hours from early voting.

The judge said the law hurts low-income and minority voters.  Early voting would begin September 30th under the judge’s order, but state officials say they will appeal.


Thursday, September 4, 2014

Lockwood Road, between U.S. Route 250 and State Route 601 in Milan will be closed between 6:30 and 3 today, for road repaving.

Local traffic will be maintained. All others should use an alternate route.


The highway patrol continues to investigate yesterday’s fatal accident in Greenfield Township.

54-year-old Sandra Lovato of Norwalk, and 76-year-old Roger Dearsman of Green Springs died yesterday morning, after the crash at the intersection of State routes 61 and 162. Troopers said Dearsman failed to yield at a stop sign, and hit Lovato’s car. Lovato was taken to Willard Mercy Hospital, where she died of injuries suffered in the crash. Dearsman was taken to Fisher-Titus Medical Center in Norwalk, but died of severe injuries. A passenger, 71-year-old Evelyn Dearsman was taken to Fisher-Titus, then was flown to St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center in Toledo.


Two mobile home parks in Norwalk were without water for a brief time yesterday.

Midtown Manor on Milan Avenue, and Key Estates on Whittelsey Avenue had  service shut off, because of past due water bills. The two mobile home parks owed nearly $34,000 for July and August. Service was turned off around 9am yesterday, and was restored at 1, after payment was made. While the mobile home parks have different owners, a management company from Akron is responsible for paying water bills for both. Both parks had water turned off once last year, for non-payment.


Bond is set at $10 million for the man accused of killing four men in Bucyrus.

41-year-old Donald Wayne Hoffman is in the Crawford County Jail on charges of aggravated murder and aggravated robbery.  He’s accused of fatally beating the men in their homes.  Two of the bodies were discovered on Monday and the other two on Tuesday.  Hoffman reportedly confessed to killing the men.  The victims ranged in age from 55 to 65.  Hoffman’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for next Friday.  If eventually convicted of the charges, he faces life in prison or death by lethal injection.


A $500 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrests of three suspects who broke into a Bellevue business earlier this week.

The three entered Thomas Steel on Elm Street just after midnight Tuesday.  According to reports, they were there for an hour and damaged doors, cabinets and equipment before making off with a small amount of cash.  The burglary was caught on video.  You can see it on the Bellevue Police Department’s Facebook page.  Anyone with information should contact the Bellevue Police Department.


The highway patrol says there were fewer fatal accidents, over the Labor Day holiday weekend.

11 people died in crashes between Friday and Monday. That’s down from 16, during the same period last year.


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Early morning dense fog caused a number of school delays, mainly west of us.

Monroeville was on a two-hour delay this morning.  Port Clinton schools had to close for the day.


Longtime Willard City Manager Brian Humphress is stepping down.

Humphress announced his resignation, during last night’s meeting of Willard City Council. His last day will be September 19th. He was asked to resign by city council, but neither side would provide more information. Humphress has served as Willard City Manager for 13 years. City Council will hire his replacement.


To Bucyrus, where four men were found beaten to death, in four different homes.

Two bodies were found Monday, and two more, yesterday. The victims were between the ages of 50 and 70. Bucyrus police believe the four deaths are connected, but a link or motive has not been established. An unnamed suspect has been interviewed, but no charges have been filed.


The intersection of State Routes 61 and 162 in Greenfield Township was closed this morning due to an accident.

The Highway Patrol and other emergency responders were at the scene.  A dispatcher was unable to provide more information.


The city of Norwalk is stocking up on road salt.

Through a purchasing program offered by the Ohio Department of Transportation, city officials agreed to buy 1,500 tons of salt at a cost of just over $58 a ton.  It’s about $22 more per ton, compared to last year.


Cedar Point’s big announcement yesterday: Mantis will give its last ride October 19th.

The stand-up coaster made its debut in 1996. There’s speculation the ride may be transformed into something else. Cedar Point officials said more information will be released at a later date.


Phone records show a Bellevue woman was using Snapchat, when her car crashed into a garbage truck, critically injuring her three-year-old son.

24-year-old Heather Russell is charged with aggravated vehicular assault. She’s awaiting court proceedings. Investigators learned Russell was using the picture-sharing app, when her car hit the back of a garbage truck on Mason Road, near State Route 269 in Groton Township. The accident occurred in mid-March. Russell was arrested about two weeks ago. She’s currently free on bond. Her son continues to recover.


You can no longer buy tobacco products at CVS.

The drug store chain stopped selling all tobacco products at all of its 7,700 locations at midnight Tuesday.


A contract dispute between Raycom and DirecTV could cause some Cleveland Browns fans to miss this Sunday’s season opener.

Raycom owns CBS affiliates WOIO Channel 19 in Cleveland, and WTOL Channel 11 in Toledo. Those channels are blacked out locally, because Raycom and DirecTV are involved in a dispute over fees. If the two sides don’t strike a new deal by Sunday, Cleveland Browns fans who subscribe to DirecTV won’t be able to see the game. The Browns will play the Steelers in Pittsburgh.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

If you’re a DirecTV subscriber, you currently don’t have CBS channels out of Toledo or Cleveland.

WTOL Channel 11, and WOIO Channel 19 are blacked out, because the satellite TV provider and Raycom failed to agree on a new carriage contract. Also out of DirecTV’s lineup, at least for now: Cleveland’s WUAB, Channel 43. 50 other Raycom-owned TV stations are affected by the dispute.


A memorial fund has been established for the family of a Bellevue man who died from injuries sustained in a crash.

20-year-old Anson Hupp passed away Friday, a day after his car went off State Route 547 in Monroeville. His car overturned multiple times, and Hupp was ejected. Contributions may be made at youcaring.com.


A suspected crystal meth maker from Bellevue has turned himself in.

32-year-old John Ruffing is charged with two counts of illegal possession of manufactured drugs. Ruffing had been at-large since last Thursday. That’s when Bellevue police and state agents searched his Section Line Road 30 home, and seized meth-related items. Ruffing’s arrest is part of the same investigation that led to last week’s arrest of Julie Singleton of Bellevue. She was arrested Thursday, after authorities searched her Thomas Drive apartment and found items used to manufacture crystal meth. She remains in the Sandusky County Jail.


The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office and state investigators are following up on complaints about Put-In-Bay’s police officers.

The Toledo Blade says, complaints from residents and business owners include unlawful arrests and inappropriate, forceful tactics.


Kraft Foods is voluntarily recalling 7,500 cases of cheese after learning a supplier failed to store the cheese in accordance with Kraft temperature standards.

The company said it could cause premature spoilage or food-borne illness. So far, Kraft has received no consumer complaints. The recall is nationwide and includes packages of 16, 24 and 64 Kraft American singles all with an expiration date of February, 2015. If you have that cheese, it should be returned to the store for an exchange or a full refund.


A reminder that U.S. Route 6, near State Route 269 in Margaretta Township is closed until early October, for a culvert replacement.

Also, State Route 60, between Vermilion and the Erie-Huron county line is down to one lane of traffic, for paving work. The project should be complete by next June.







Friday, August 29, 2014

The 2014 high school football season kicks off tonight.

On 95.3, WLKR, we’ll be live at Whitney Field in Norwalk, as the Truckers take on the Edison Chargers. Pregame coverage begins at 6:30, with kickoff at 7. After Norwalk and Edison, we’ll head to Castalia, for Pigskin Playback action between Margaretta and Willard. On K96, you’ll hear live coverage of the first ever ‘Shoreline Showdown’, between Huron and Sandusky. Tomorrow night, it’s St. Paul and St. Mary, on 95.3, WLKR.


A Bellevue man was flown to St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center, after a rollover crash on State Route 547 in Sherman Township.

20-year-old Anson Hupp was injured late yesterday afternoon. According to the highway patrol, Hupp went off 547, hit an embankment and overturned multiple times. He was ejected from the car. Troopers said Hupp wasn’t wearing his seat belt. He was flown from the scene to St. V’s. Hospital officials had no condition update this morning.


The manager of a Put-in-Bay bar has been charged with raping a woman who was unconscious.

32-year-old Chris Blessing of Port Clinton works at Mr. Ed’s Bar and Grill. He appeared in court yesterday, and pleaded not guilty to two counts of rape. The woman told authorities she lost consciousness one night in early May, when she and Blessing were drinking together. She regained consciousness during the alleged rape, and she told investigators she believe she was drugged. Blessing is free on $100,000 bond.


The investigation continues into a garage fire in Monroeville. 

Firefighters were summoned to the Route 99 scene late Wednesday night.  The blaze did about $50,000 damage.


It’s festival time in New London and Milan.

The Firelands Festival begins today at Recreation Park in New London. The Melon Festival begins tomorrow in Milan. Both festivals run through Labor Day. The Melon Festival’s Grand Parade begins at 2 Sunday afternoon. If you’d like to go, get there early.


The Labor Day weekend is expected to be the busiest in several years on Ohio’s roads.

AAA says nearly 1.5 million Ohioans will travel by car through Monday. The auto club says it’s the highest number of people to go out of town, to wrap up the summer since the 2008 recession.


Monday is Labor Day.

Schools will be closed, along with local, state and federal government offices. Most banks will be closed as well. No mail Monday, and trash pickup will be delayed by one day.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The ban has been lifted, on Norwalk’s upper reservoir.

It was lifted late yesterday afternoon, by the Ohio EPA and city officials. The upper reservoir had been off-limits since last Monday, due to potentially harmful algae toxins.


Traffic will be restricted today, at the intersection of Norwalk’s Benedict Avenue and Elm Street, as workers continue seeding and grading the boulevard.

Motorists should use alternate routes, as traffic will be delayed.


A Sandusky man is behind bars, charged in connection with a 1987 murder in Florida.

64-year-old Carl McCauley was arrested yesterday at home, on a warrant issued by Polk County deputies. He’s accused of stabbing and killing 41-year-old Karen Watson in the Tampa Bay-area 27 years ago. McCauley has lived and worked in Sandusky for at least 15 years. He’s now facing extradition back to Florida.


Bond is set at $150,000 for a Bellevue woman accused of running a meth lab in her apartment.

Julie Singleton was arraigned yesterday in Bellevue Municipal Court.  She’s facing six felony charges with more charges possible.  A Monday search of her Thomas Avenue apartment turned up materials used to make crystal meth.  Singleton’s case is expected to be bound over to a grand jury.


U.S. Route 6, just west of State Route 269 in Margaretta Township will close on Tuesday, September 2nd for a culvert replacement project.

Work should last a month.


Ohio State University officials want former band director Jonathon Waters to go away.

A statement from the school yesterday denied Waters’ request for a name-clearing hearing saying the decision to fire him was final.  Waters’ attorney says if Ohio State won’t let him state his case, the federal courts might.


Time Warner officials continue to investigate yesterday’s nationwide internet outage.

The outage lasted several hours.


As we first told you yesterday, crews from The Weather Channel will be in Huron today and tomorrow, filming segments for a high school football-themed show called 12 weeks, 12 towns.

The series will debut September 5th. Along with Huron, the famed Massillon Tigers football program will be featured on the show.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Authorities have shut down a meth lab in Bellevue.

Police, Sandusky County deputies and state agents searched a Thomas Drive apartment Monday night, and found materials used to manufacture crystal meth. One person was arrested. 43-year-old Julie Singleton is facing six charges, including illegal possession of chemicals to manufacture drugs. Additional felony charges are possible. She’s in the Sandusky County Jail, without bond. During the raid, police and firefighters evacuated nearby apartments, after the area was deemed unsafe. They were allowed back in when investigators cleared the scene, around midnight.


The Weather Channel is coming to Huron.

Producers will be in town tomorrow and Friday, to compile footage for a new series called “12 Weeks, 12 Towns.” The program profiles communities across the country that possess a deep, citywide passion for high school football. The segment will feature interviews with local supporters of Huron football, and possible visits to businesses that support the football program. Weather Channel producers will be on the sidelines Friday night for the first-ever “Shoreline Showdown”, filming elements of the Huron-Sandusky football game. The game will be broadcast live on K96.


The ban on Norwalk’s upper reservoir MAY be lifted today.

We’ll let you know when it happens.


The city of Norwalk will soon have its own equipment to test for toxins in algae.

A $10,000 grant from the EPA will cover the cost.  The city currently has to send samples to a Put-In-Bay lab or to the University of Cincinnati.


A one-car crash on Bogart Road, near State Route 4 in Perkins Township sent a Sandusky man to the hospital for treatment of serious leg injuries.

According to reports, 21-year-old Cole Green went off the road, clipped two trees, then hit a third tree head-on. The impact threw the engine from the car, into a nearby driveway. Green was flown to a Toledo hospital for treatment. Perkins police believe speed may have played a role in the crash.


If you have internet service through Time Warner, you may have been affected by an early morning outage.

Company officials said the nationwide outage was caused by a problem that occurred during routine maintenance.


A new study finds beer is good for Ohio, in terms of jobs.

The Beer Institute says Ohio ranks sixth in the nation for the number of jobs supported by the brewing industry.  Nearly 83,000 people help brew, bottle and serve beer in the state, including farmers, truck drivers and bartenders.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A brief cool down is on the way.

Tomorrow’s high will be 80 and Thursday, 78.  By football Friday, temperatures will climb to the mid-80′s.


A state board has approved construction of a wind farm in Greenwich Township.

Approval came, despite protests by nearby residents. They voiced concerns about potential health effects, harm to wildlife and noise. Greenwich Wind Park plans to build up to 25 wind turbines across 4,600 acres, spanning from the Huron-Richland County line, to the area near U.S. Route 250.


A longtime member of the Bellevue police force has been named chief.

Mark Kaufman had been serving as interim chief since last fall. He’s a lifelong Bellevue resident, and has been with the police department for nearly 20 years.


Huron County Deputies are investigating a weekend crash that sent two boys to two different hospitals.

The head-on accident involving two four-wheelers occurred in Collins behind a home on Hartland Center Road.  Nine-year-old Kyle Leimeister of Collins was taken by Lifeflight to Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center.  He’s in fair condition.  10-year-old Wyatt Pleska was injured as well and was taken by ambulance to Fisher-Titus Medical Center.  His condition is unknown.


A Willard man convicted of stealing thousands of dollars worth of jewelry from an 89-year-old woman is going to prison.

For how long remains to be seen. 25-year-old Tyler Branham has been sentenced to 17 months, for theft from the elderly. He’ll receive credit for roughly five months already spent in the Huron County Jail, and he may be eligible for early release from prison. Branham took the victim’s jewelry from her home in January, after shoveling snow from her driveway.


Norwalk officials are waiting for state approval before lifting a ban on the city’s upper reservoir. 

It was closed last Monday after tests showed a potentially harmful algae bloom.  Workers treated the water twice last week.


The state’s newest ‘racino’ will open this week.

Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway will open for business this Thursday. It’ll be the sixth racino in Ohio. A seventh one will open next month near Youngstown.


An investigation is underway, into a deadly plane crash east of Cleveland.

Willoughby Hills police say, four people were killed last night, shortly after the plane took off from the Cuyahoga County Airport. The plane went down, and burst into flames.


The man in charge of Toledo’s troubled water treatment plant is stepping down.

David Leffler will resign, effective Monday. According to the Toledo Blade, Mayor Michael Collins requested Leffer’s resignation.


In sports…

The Indians will begin a stretch of 30 games in 30 days tonight against the White Sox.  Game time in Chicago will be 8:10 and you can hear it on 95.3, WLKR.


Monday, August 25, 2014

The Coast Guard will resume its search today for a 33-year-old man who jumped off a boat last night near Whiskey Island in Cleveland, and did not make it to shore.

His girlfriend did, but the man went underwater and did not re-surface.


Arrests are pending, in connection with a number of pot plants recently found in Erie County.

About 40 plants were seized from a field behind the former movie theater near Wal-Mart on Milan Road in Perkins Township. 40 more were seized near the intersection of Wikel and Knight roads in Berlin Township.


Charges may be filed against a driver who hit a road construction worker in Norwalk.

45-year-old Kathryn Marchlewski of Toledo was struck early Friday afternoon near the intersection of Benedict, Norwood and Summit.  She was taken to Fisher-Titus Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.  A report has been sent to Law Director Stu O’Hara.


A Willard man convicted to stealing thousands of dollars worth of jewelry from an 89-year-old woman is going to prison.

For how long remains to be seen.  25-year-old Tyler Branham was sentenced late last week to 17 months for theft from the elderly.  He’ll receive credit for roughly five months already spent in the Huron County Jail and he may be eligible for early release from prison.  Branham took the victim’s jewelry from her home in January after shoveling snow from her driveway.  The two knew each other through church.


Two long-running festivals will be held this weekend.

The 106th Firelands Festival begins Friday, and runs through Monday at New London Recreation Park. And the 56th annual Milan Melon Festival begins Saturday. It runs through Labor Day Monday.


The state’s newest ‘racino’ will open this week.

Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway will open for business this Thursday.  It’ll be the sixth racino in Ohio.  A seventh one will open next month near Youngstown.


From the Ohio Department of Transportation…

Until the end of September, U.S. Route 20, between Monroeville and Bellevue will be down to one lane each way, for sealing work. Also, State Route 547 in Monroeville has re-opened a few days ahead of schedule. It had been closed, for culvert work.


Peach season is here, but there’s a good chance the ones you buy are from out-of-state.

The Ohio Fruit Growers Marketing Association says, this year’s brutal winter nearly wiped out the state’s peach crop.


Today’s statewide average for gas is $3.42.

Expect pump prices to rise in time for the upcoming Labor Day weekend.