Tuesday, June 06, 2000

Greater Cincinnati Digest

Girl accused of attack is cleared

        MIDDLETOWN — A 15-year-old girl who had been accused of poisoning her stepmother with tainted lemonade was cleared of criminal charges Monday and was released from the Butler County Juvenile Detention Center.

        A laboratory analysis indicated there were no foreign substances in the lemonade, Middletown police said.

        The 43-year-old stepmother had told police on May 14 that the lemonade had a strong, unusual odor and caused a burning sensation in her throat. The girl was charged with assault and was placed in the juvenile detention center.

        Police suspected the girl of putting motor oil in the one-gallon can of lemonade. Family friends had told them that the girl earlier had put bleach into a liter bottle of pop because she was upset with the family.

        The girl is staying with her grandparents, police said.

Computer message evacuates school
        SPRINGFIELD TWP. — A computer message prompted the evacuation of Welch Elementary School for a short time Monday morning, but a search of the building found nothing.

        A message was sent over the school's computer system just after 10 a.m. reading, “evacuate the building, quickly,” police said. The message did not specifically imply a threat, but the building in Deerhorn Drive was evacuated and searched.

        The computer message was tracked to Northwest High School, and a student there was arrested and charged with inducing panic, police said. The case will be handled in juvenile court.

Mount picks S.C. man as new dean
        Douglas K. Frizzell has been named dean of students at the College of Mount St. Joseph in Delhi Township.


        Mr. Frizzell comes from Newberry College in South Carolina where he was vice president for student affairs. Before that, he was dean of students at the University of Findlay in northern Ohio.

        He succeeds Jeffrey Long, who took a similar job at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.

UC holds forum on defibrillators
        University of Cincinnati medical officials will hold a community forum today as part of a national study to determine the effectiveness of defibrillators in public places.

        The forum is part of the public disclosure process, which is required before UC can be granted a waiver of informed consent by its institutional review board.

        “We had to do that because the people who are going to be included in this study are going to be in cardiac arrest, and are not going to be able to sign the form,” said UC research assistant Michael Ottaway.

        By October, defibrillators will be in trial use at 20 Greater Cincinnati venues, including hotels, shopping malls and entertainment arenas.

        The study will determine “whether community lay person volunteers can be effectively trained in the proper treatment during sudden cardiac arrest,” Mr. Ottaway said. Employees at 40 participanting venues will learn CPR.

        The forum will be at 6 p.m. in Kresge Auditorium in the College of Medicine campus in Corryville. Anyone with questions about the study can call 558-1191.

Walkathon to warn of fireworks hazards
        To remind people that backyard fireworks can cause serious eye injuries, an advocacy group called Prevent Blindness Ohio has begun registration for a June 30 walkathon.

        Nationwide, an estimated 8,500 fireworks-related injuries required emergency hospital treatment. Of those injuries, about 25 percent were eye-related, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

        Cincinnati will be among 50 cities participating in a “Light the Night for Sight” walkathon to raise awareness about the risks of fireworks. The walk begins at 6:30 p.m. June 30 at Coney Island amusement park. For information, call 531-9001.

Wal-Mart aids Children's Hospital
        Customers and employees of Greater Cincinnati Wal-Mart and Sam's Clubs stores have raised $147,000 for the Ruth Lyons Children's Cancer Program.

        The local donation, to benefit Children's Hospital Medical Center, was part of $30 million raised for more than 170 children's hospitals throughout North America.

Lawyer accused of stealing from client
        A Cincinnati lawyer was indicted Monday on charges of stealing about $50,000 from a client.

        J. Andrew Keplar, 38, faces two counts of theft and up to three years in prison if he is convicted on both charges. He is accused of taking money from property sales that he handled last year for the client, Caven McLoughlin.

        Hamilton County prosecutors say Mr. Keplar skimmed $10,000 for himself from the sale of a $39,000 piece of property last January. They say he took $41,000 more after selling another property for the same client.

        Prosecutor Mike Allen said Mr. Keplar transferred the money to his own account and used it for living expenses, phone bills and ballet lessons.

        Prosecutors say Mr. Keplar, whose last business address was on Corporate Park Drive in Cincinnati, is not in custody. They say he recently left the city and may be living in Medina, Ohio.

Ohio Lottery plans to replace computers
        CLEVELAND — The Ohio Lottery has selected its current software contractor to replace a computer system linking all 7,500 sales locations statewide.

        Sandy Lesko Mounts, a lottery spokeswoman, said Monday that Gtech Corp., of West Greenwich, R.I., was notified about the new deal last week.

        The contract will be worth about the same next year as this year's deal with Gtech: about $2.2 million for managing instant games and about $16.5 million for online games like the Pick 3 and Super Lotto, she said.

        According to the company, the contract will run through June 2001 and has four two-year renewal options.

        Under terms of the contract, a new computer system will be installed by July 2001 linking touch-screen sales consoles statewide with lottery headquarters.

Death penalty asked in kidnap-slaying
        NEW PHILADELPHIA, Ohio — The state will pursue the death penalty against a hitchhiker suspected in the kidnap-slaying of a 17-year-old girl and the abduction of her friend, a prosecutor said Monday.

        Assistant Tuscarawas County Prosecutor Scott Mastin commented on the case against Matthew Vaca, 27, of New Philadelphia, after moving to have Mr. Vaca's probation revoked in another case.

        Common Pleas Court Judge Elizabeth Thomaskos scheduled a June 30 hearing on Mr. Vaca's probation status.

        Mr. Vaca was convicted in 1996 on grand theft and forgery charges. He reportedly has confessed to last month's slaying of Elizabeth Reiser, 17, and the abduction and attempted rape of her 18-year-old friend.


Sex with student nets prison
Progress against food allergies
Hospital targets food disorders
Grandparents' rights dealt a setback
Excerpts of Supreme Court decision
Archdiocese clears priest in stabbing case
Murder-for-hire sentences: 40+ years
Neighbors' dispute leaves Mason man critical
PULFER: A big gift from the graduate
DUI repeater dies in car chase
More seniors pass proficiency test
Teacher may have uncovered rare D-Day tank
Teacher training changes on deck
SAMPLES: School audit chance for fresh start
Doctors take step to save trashy house
Grads get real-world advice
Pig Parade: Piggy Max
Movie gives Leis two reasons to party
KIESEWETTER: MTV veteran on network TV Colin Mortensen from MTV's Real World is getting the last laugh.
Troupe stumbles with production of 'Threepenny'
VoiceBox effortlessly mixes musical genres
$4.1M post office opens in Mason
Clerk accused of campaign violation
Enquirer sues for stadium documents
Five up for police chief
GOP picks 2 alternates who gave to Lucas
- Greater Cincinnati Digest
Gunman, lawyer killed in shootout
Home for pregnant teens wins appeal
'Horse Mania' to strike
Kentucky Digest
Kids get free meals
New school district has its leader
Poet's visit speaks volumes
Pollution labels to last longer
Queen City's moments to shine reflected in book
Reading schools hire junior-senior principal
Report blasts city manager
Signs point to litter cleanup
Waste facility drops plan
Welfare eligibility change to benefit hundreds in Ky.