LOCAL NEWS FOR FRIDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2003
Grand jury eyes church leaders
Hamilton County prosecutors are preparing to convene a special grand jury to investigate how Archdiocese of Cincinnati officials responded to allegations of sexual abuse involving Catholic priests.

Don't have a cow: Beef costs up
U.S. cattle futures hit a 17-year high this week, after a yearlong rise fueled by animal illness abroad and a renewed taste for beef at home.

Bush taps DeWitt for inner circle
Cincinnati investor William O. DeWitt Jr. President Bush will be one of President Bush's advisers on just how good America's intelligence gathering is.
The Bill DeWitt File
Advisory board members

Students' college dreams in jeopardy
Federal Pell grants, an avenue for college aid, may dry up for thousands of families because of eligibility changes that begin in the 2004-2005 school year.

I-75 plan with rail passes
The region's main transportation planning agency Thursday overwhelmingly approved a mix of highway expansion and a new light-rail line as the best way to fix traffic on Interstate 75.

Tuition program: money is secure
The day after Ohio's guaranteed prepaid tuition plan was suspended, officials were fielding calls about the changes despite mailing to participants assurances that money invested in the program is secure.

Great Neighborhoods
Welcome to Montgomery and Sycamore Township, two of the Tristate's Great Neighborhoods. In the 16th installment of our series, we showcase the people, schools, businesses and cultures that make these communities special.
Previous "Great Neighborhood" reports:
Anderson Twp.Blue AshColerain Twp.Dearborn Co.FairfieldFlorence
HamiltonLebanonLoveland & Symmes TownshipMason & Deerfield Twp.
Milford & Miami Twp.NewportNorwoodWest ChesterWest Side


Election Guide 2003
Cincinnati.com provides an early look at the Nov. 4 vote with help on getting you registered, lists of area candidates and the latest campaign news. And there's more to come, including candidate profiles - as we get closer to Election Day.


IN THE TRISTATE
Blue Ash enacts bike helmet law
BLUE ASH - City Council's message to young bicyclists: Use your noggin; wear a helmet.
Charges dismissed against ex-priest
A judge threw out criminal charges of sexual abuse against former Cincinnati priest George Cooley Thursday, saying police should have pursued the case years ago if they believed the allegations were true.
Campaigners for council take it to high school
MADISONVILLE - It was candidates' forum with a twist - very few in the audience could even vote.
Ohioans in D.C. blast plan for Fernald water
Ohio congressmen sent a letter to the Department of Energy's top official involved in the Fernald nuclear cleanup, criticizing the agency for a plan that would allow it to stop treating contaminated groundwater next year. Instead, it would be dumped directly into the Great Miami River.
Debate turns to crime, race
DOWNTOWN - Issues of race and crime collided in a debate among would-be Cincinnati councilmen Thursday when a boycott leader confronted Republican Terry Deters.
Anderson to meet more of own needs
ANDERSON TWP. - As the population in this eastern Hamilton County township continues to grow, so does the need for administrative flexibility, say township leaders.
Thank-you to teacher comes with $25,000
COLERAIN TWP. - When Marti Kendinger stood up during a Colerain High School assembly Thursday in her honor she had one thought.
Man who killed young mother gets 23 years
Pete Ridder had only one question for the man convicted of killing his daughter: "Why?"
Victim protection studied
After months of talking about how to best help witnesses and victims involved in criminal cases to come forward without fear, Hamilton County Prosecutor Mike Allen is creating an assistance program.
Regional Report

On Campus

ENQUIRER COLUMNISTS
Downs: Newcomer's idea for fun: Black Movie Lounge
There are the people who sit on the couch and grumble there's nothing to do in Cincinnati.
Howard: Grandma also served country
Christopher and Katelyn Wilson won't remember the time they spent with Grandma, and what a fuss people made over them.
BUTLER, WARREN, CLERMONT
Clermont explores world cultures
BATAVIA - Diverse people, from American Indians to natives of India, will be celebrated at the first Culturefest for Clermont County residents Saturday.
For Leno, he'll go heels over head
WEST CHESTER TWP. - Joel Morgan will get his 15 minutes of fame by standing on his head and singing the books of the Bible on national television tonight.
Serial DUI driver kept in prison
LEBANON - A Warren County judge has refused the request of a notorious drunken driver to be released from prison early.
OBITUARIES
M. A. Croucher, former Eden Grove principal
COLLEGE HILL - Miriam Agnes Croucher spent her life teaching about the Christian faith, first as the daughter of missionaries and later as principal of Eden Grove Academy.
Pat Matthews, 77, was active volunteer
OAKLEY - Ann-Patton Biddle Matthews was a lifelong and prolific volunteer because she loved helping others.
Kentucky obituaries

OHIO
Blackwell group redoes tax repeal petitions
COLUMBUS - A group headed by Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell on Thursday gave Attorney General Jim Petro petitions with 247 signatures, seeking permission to pursue a repeal of the penny-per-dollar sales tax increase that lawmakers approved this year.
Overhaul of Ohio grad schools advised
COLUMBUS - Ohio's public colleges and universities have too many mediocre graduate programs and possibly too many public medical schools, said the state's top higher-education official.
Rain, prevention knock down West Nile virus
TOLEDO, Ohio - Drenching rains and floods helped dampen the number of West Nile virus cases in Ohio this year.
Ohio Moments

KENTUCKY
Officer not hit as gun fired once
TAYLOR MILL - A Northern Kentucky police officer was shaken but OK Thursday afternoon after a man he was arresting grabbed his police pistol and fired one shot, police said.
Murgatroyd penalized $1,300
FORT MITCHELL - Kenton County Judge-executive Dick Murgatroyd's 2002 reelection campaign has paid $1,300 in penalties after admitting to breaking election finance laws, state election finance officials confirmed Thursday.
NKU frowns on 2 frat bashes
HIGHLAND HEIGHTS - Two fraternities at Northern Kentucky University will be sanctioned after hosting a "safe sex party" in the campus ballroom and a Jell-O wrestling contest on the campus plaza.
Newport captain suspended pending internal investigation
NEWPORT - Longtime police Capt. Cyril Sykes has been suspended pending the outcome of an internal investigation.
Kenton has best race in town
The only local political race on the Nov. 4 ballot is for an important yet often overlooked office that even one of the candidates admits "is not all that sexy."
Lyon Co. gives nod to mask ban
EDDYVILLE, Ky. - Lyon County officials have given initial approval to a proposal to prohibit the wearing of masks in public, a measure that a civil-rights activist called a "good step."
Abuse victims plead for quick OK of payment plan
LOUISVILLE - Several plaintiffs in a $25.7 million settlement with the Louisville Archdiocese over sex-abuse claims pleaded Thursday for quick approval of a payment plan haggled over by lawyers.
SUNDAY SPOTLIGHT   (Index of Sunday's local stories)
Suspects: 'You talk, you die'
Lisa Gregory thought the worst day of her life was June 14, the day her 18-year-old son was shot dead in Over-the-Rhine. At least police had a good suspect. But the charges were dropped after one witness wouldn't cooperate and another couldn't be found.
Officials seek plan to protect witnesses

Ring suspected of stealing dogs
VERONA, Ky. - A "puppy mill" ring is suspected in the theft of more than two dozen purebred dogs in Northern Kentucky since August - including some stolen while children played nearby.

'Time to take back church,' Catholic group says
MONTGOMERY - The sex-abuse scandal that has enveloped the Roman Catholic Church for the better part of two years in the United States has brought Catholics a few gifts - along with the terrible pain and suffering to those victims of abuse.

SPECIAL
New bridge: A $750M puzzle
In a special report, The Enquirer tells why the Brent Spence Bridge is one of the most dangerous bridges in the nation, and how replacing it will be fraught with enormous problems and costs. Web readers can ride through the danger spots on WCPO video and rate the bridge's 'Fear Factor' in our online survey.
Do you drive the bridge? Rate the 'Fear Factor'
Photo gallery

Priests and Sexual Misconduct
Four priests in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and two priests who formerly served in the Diocese of Covington have been suspended and/or accused of sexual misconduct in a scandal that has swept across the country. Click here for an archive of Enquirer reports.

Erpenbeck Investigation
Bill Erpenbeck was one of the Tristate's biggest home builders before his company crumbled in a bank fraud scandal that affected lenders, subcontractors and home owners. Click here for links to all Enquirer reports.