Repairs top Ohio colleges' capital budget request
Written by JULIE CARR SMYTH, AP Statehouse Correspondent   
Thursday, 23 January 2014 13:55

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio higher education leaders, instructed by Republican Gov. John Kasich to cooperate with each other when requesting state dollars, identified maintenance and repairs as far higher priorities than new construction in a 2014 capital funding request released Thursday.

Kasich praised a coalition led by presidents of Ohio public colleges and universities for identifying unique, innovative priorities through shared effort rather than competing for limited state resources.

"You know (in college) you have those slices of pizza sitting on the table there, and I remember back in the days when I was in college, you just grab as many slices of pizza as you can," Kasich said during a conference call detailing the higher education group's funding outline. "That was inappropriate, and these college presidents are acting so fantastic from the standpoint of what's good for the state is good for us."

Ohio University President Roderick McDavis, who chaired this year's Ohio Higher Education Funding Commission, noted that $166.8 million of the $404.5 million requested will be for unglamorous but important maintenance projects across the state, mostly refurbishing and upgrading existing buildings.

$5M bond for Ohio ex-con charged in girl's death
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 23 January 2014 11:50

CLEVELAND (AP) — Bond of $5 million has been set for an ex-con charged with aggravated murder in the Cleveland shooting of a 5-year-old girl.

The bond was set Thursday for 32-year-old Geoffrey Gurkovich of Cleveland during an appearance in Municipal Court. No attorney for him was listed in court records detailing the charge.

He is accused of killing Jermani Brooks, who was shot in the head Sunday while sitting in a vehicle with her mother. The woman was wounded.

Police allege Gurkovich intended to shoot a man who got into an argument with his girlfriend. They say Jermani apparently was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Relatives planned a vigil Thursday, on what would have been Jermani's sixth birthday.

Her mother has been hospitalized in fair condition.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Conflicting views of Ind. shooting suspect emerge
Written by AMANDA LEE MYERS & CHARLES D. WILSON, Associated Press   
Thursday, 23 January 2014 11:12
A path is lit for members of the Purdue All-American Marching Band during a vigil for a teaching assistant who was fatally shot on campus at Purdue University, on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, in West Lafayette, Ind. (AP Photo/The Journal & Courier, Michael Heinz)
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A Purdue University engineering student who police say fatally shot another student in a basement classroom prepared to face a judge as those who knew both men struggled to make sense of the violence Wednesday.

Cody Cousins, 23, was scheduled to make an initial court appearance Thursday afternoon in a small courtroom at the Tippecanoe County Jail, Deputy Prosecutor Kristen McVey said in a statement.

Cousins, who has addresses in Warsaw, Ind., and Centerville, Ohio, is being held without bond on a preliminary charge of murder in Tuesday's shooting death of 21-year-old Andrew Boldt of West Bend, Wis. Police have said Cousins targeted Boldt but they haven't disclosed why or how the two might have known each other.
Last Updated on Thursday, 23 January 2014 11:17
Ohioan with asbestos-related cancer awarded $27 million
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 23 January 2014 11:49

CLEVELAND (AP) — A jury in Ohio has awarded a Cleveland-area man suffering from asbestos-related cancer a $27.5 million verdict.

The man's attorney tells The Plain Dealer (http://bit.ly/1mx30MI ) that it's the largest award of its kind in Ohio.

John Panza was diagnosed in 2012 with what is usually a fatal form of lung cancer. The 40-year-old Panza got cancer after being exposed to asbestos dust on the clothes of his father, who worked at a plant that made brakes.

The December verdict means that Livonia, Mich.-based Kelsey-Hayes Co. is responsible for the $27.5 million award to Panza and his wife.

The company is the successor to the firm that made the asbestos brake pads. A message seeking comment was left with the company's attorneys.

The Plain Dealer reports an appeal is likely.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Facial recognition used to ID Ohio slaying suspect
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 23 January 2014 08:39

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Akron investigators say they identified a homicide suspect using facial recognition software made available to police last summer through Ohio's law enforcement information-sharing system.

A spokeswoman for Ohio's attorney general tells the Akron Beacon Journal (http://bit.ly/LXW8Nz ) she's not aware of other homicide cases that were closed because of the facial recognition software.

Akron police say they used the Ohio Law Enforcement Gateway database to help identify a photograph obtained during the investigation of a Monday robbery and shooting death. The database includes driver's license photos.

The 37-year-old man identified as a potential match to the photo was arrested after follow-up interviews. He is one of three suspects in the case.

Critics call the facial recognition technology intrusive. A state panel studying access to the information-sharing system recommended stricter access requirements.


Information from: Akron Beacon Journal, http://www.ohio.com

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 January 2014 08:40
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