Ohio priest in child abuse case gets 7 ½ years
Written by LISA CORNWELL, Associated Press   
Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:22

CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio priest convicted of taking a 10-year-old boy to West Virginia for sex more than two decades ago was sentenced Wednesday to seven and a half years in prison.

Robert Poandl was sentenced in federal court in Cincinnati on one count of transporting a minor in interstate commerce with the intent of engaging him in sex. Prosecutors say the priest, from the suburban Cincinnati-based Glenmary Home Missioners, took the boy to Spencer, W.Va., in 1991 and raped him while visiting a church there

Poandl, who was convicted in September, continued to maintain his innocence Wednesday.

"I have never ever abused anyone, ever," the 72-year-old priest told the judge prior to sentencing.

But Poandl also said that he believes his accuser has convinced himself and his family that the abuse occurred and they believe him.

He said he would pray for the accuser and his family.

Feds: Signups for health insurance top 60,000 in Ohio
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:21

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Federal officials say more than 60,000 Ohioans have picked health plans in the first four months of the new online marketplace created by President Barack Obama's health care overhaul law.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a report Wednesday with the enrollment numbers for Oct. 1 through Feb. 1.

Ohio is among the 36 states relying on the federal website, HealthCare.gov.

The data shows that most Ohioans who are obtaining coverage are older. Fifty-eight percent are between ages 45 and 64, while 20 percent are ages 18 to 34.

The report said close to 160,000 residents were found eligible to enroll in a marketplace plan. And about eighty-three percent of those who have signed up are getting financial help to pay their monthly premiums.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Email for help leads to three Ohio child abuse arrests
Written by AMANDA LEE MYERS, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 16:31

CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio girl's emailed plea for help led to the arrest of her mother, grandmother and stepfather for allegedly beating and tying the girl and her siblings to their beds, sometimes for weeks at a time, officials said Wednesday.

The 44-year-old man arrested in the case is also charged with repeatedly raping his two stepdaughters, ages 9 and 11, in addition to abusing their 8-year-old brother.

"It was a horrific situation for the children in this house," Scioto County sheriff's Capt. David Hall said.

Investigators learned about the alleged abuse after one of the older girls sent an email to a teacher at the children's online school on Jan. 30, according to Hall. Authorities said the girl asked the teacher to call 911 because she and her siblings were being "tied to the beds and beat."

The children later told deputies that they were restrained with ropes and chains for weeks at a time, sometimes longer, and only occasionally untied to do online schoolwork. They also described being forced to take their clothes off to be beaten with belts and paddles.

The children had marks and scars to match their stories, Hall said.

Ohio one of states to help challenge New Jersey gun law
Written by BEN NEARY, Associated Press   
Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:20

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming is leading a coalition of 19 states asking the U.S. Supreme Court to let them submit a brief supporting a New Jersey man's challenge to that state's concealed weapons law.

The Wyoming Attorney General's Office, acting as lawyer for Wyoming and the other states, on Wednesday asked the Supreme Court to grant a hearing to John M. Drake and others who are challenging a recent appeals court ruling.

A three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last summer ruled against Drake's challenge to a provision in New Jersey law that says people seeking permits to carry a concealed firearm must prove to police that they have a justifiable need.

The brief from Wyoming Attorney General's Office says that Wyoming and the other states are concerned that if the appeals court ruling stands, it could threaten their less-restrictive concealed carry laws.

Ohio proposal would let scooters park on sidewalks
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 13:33

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohioans could park certain motor scooters and motorized cycles on sidewalks under a proposal slated to be voted on Wednesday by state representatives.

Current Ohio law bans vehicles from parking on sidewalks, while allowing bicycles. The proposal would let people park motor scooters or certain motorbikes on sidewalks, as long they do not impede the flow of pedestrian traffic.

The state Senate passed an earlier version of the bill.

State Sen. Bill Seitz (syts) of Cincinnati sponsored the measure after hearing about the parking struggles of his law partner. He has said the change could encourage people to commute in more energy-efficient ways.

The measure also would let people drive their historical vehicles on public roads and highways when traveling to and from locations for maintenance.

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

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