Friday, October 17, 2003

Regional Report

Compiled from staff and wire reports

Police to enforce alarm registrations

Got a burglar alarm? Better get it registered.

Starting Monday, Cincinnati police will begin enforcing the city's new rules requiring residential and commercial alarm users to register the alarms with the city. The policy is aimed at reducing the false alarms to which officers respond. Alarm companies must register and pay a fee.

Homeowners face fines for police calls on unregistered alarms and for repeated false alarms.

About half of the alarm companies known to police have registered. Those that don't can be fined $1,000 a month and face additional fees for not complying.The companies must pay a $250 annual fee and give police their list of subscribers. The policy was developed because police said they were responding to hundreds of false alarms at a cost to taxpayers in 2002 of $500,000.

Meningitis confirmed at Talawanda High

OXFORD - Two cases of viral meningitis have been confirmed at Talawanda High School.

Viral meningitis is the less serious form of the disease and is an irritation of the covering of the brain and spinal cord. It is present in fecal matter and saliva droplets of victims.

"We're looking at the possibility that the two students shared a water bottle," said Pat Burg, director of the Butler County Health Department.

Symptoms include fever, headache, lack of appetite, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting and a stiff neck. Usually the symptoms go away without permanent damage after a few days to a week.

For more information, call the health department at 867-1770.

Uranium plant likely to get tax breaks

COLUMBUS - A spokesman for Gov. Bob Taft said he is expected to sign a bill providing additional tax breaks for locating a $1.5 billion uranium enrichment plant producing 500 jobs in Piketon.

The Ohio Senate Wednesday added its approval to the tax-break amendment approved by the House a day earlier. Ohio is competing with Paducah, Ky., for the plant that will use a new centrifuge technology.

The bill authorizes a job-creation tax credit for the now-closed gaseous diffusion plant. It also adds five years to the 10-year abatement of real estate and personal property taxes for the giant operation.

No indictment issued in child's gun death

A Hamilton County grand jury did not indict a 20-year-old man prosecutors say owned the gun that killed 7-year-old Javontay Williams last month.

Four of five witnesses who prosecutors hoped would testify Wednesday before the grand jury failed to show up.

Police could not locate three of the witnesses to issue subpoenas and a fourth witness, the boy's mother, was unable to go to the hearing.

Javontay was playing with an 8-year-old friend in the basement of a Mount Airy apartment Sept. 22, when they found a loaded handgun and began playing with it, police said.

The gun went off in the hands of the 8-year-old and struck Javontay in the chest.

The 8-year-old was not charged.

Prosecutors could bring the case back to the grand jury if the witnesses are found.

Traffic stop yields 20 pounds of pot

OVER-THE-RHINE - Cincinnati police say they found 20 pounds of marijuana while making a traffic stop Thursday afternoon in Over-the-Rhine. Officer Candace Jump saw a Honda CRX turn onto Race Street without signaling, so she stopped the car. She smelled marijuana as soon as she walked up to the car, said Sgt. Philip Buccino. She found marijuana in a garbage bag in the car's luggage area. The driver was arrested on drug charges; a passenger was arrested on an unrelated warrant.

Buccino estimated the drugs' value at $20,000.

Police car injures teen-age pedestrian

NORTHSIDE - A 16-year-old girl, who was struck by a Cincinnati police squad car as she crossed the street, was treated for minor injuries.

Cincinnati police Sgt. John Rees was on patrol about 8:30 p.m. when his squad car hit Tyesha Walker of Northside. She was treated at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. Rees, 36, was turning left from Chase Avenue onto Mad Anthony Street when he hit Walker, who was crossing from west to east on Mad Anthony.

Rees remained on duty after the wreck.

Appeals court revives Soap Box Derby suit

AKRON - An appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit filed by four All-American Soap Box Derby contestants whose cars were ruled ineligible in the 2002 race.

Before the race, derby officials discovered 11 cars, including four built by the youngsters who sued, had floorboards that did not meet proper dimensions. The racers said they bought their car kits from the derby and that the floorboards had been hand-cut. The 9th District Court of Appeals in Akron on Wednesday reversed the decision.

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Daily schedule

Charges filed in boat hit-skip
Third plea deal in flipping
Ohio videoslots no sure bet

Supply of blood at very low level here
Ex-CEO at Scripps joins Xavier business school
Police look for girl, 14, as Short Vine attacker
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Volunteer groups urged on
Regional Report

Crowley: View from N. Ky. hills entices home buyers
Downs: Halloween groaners will shake you up
Howard: Good Things Happening

Flooding focus of Fairfield hopefuls
Support grows for Liberty connector
Removal of lead from yards starts next week
Oxford school mourns another
Her goal: Improve schools
Veterans tell stories for posterity

Tony Marquez was chief of surgery at Mercy-West
Kentucky obituaries

Utilities get no-blackout tips
Buckeye Egg likely to appeal state order
Officials fatal fire investigation
Ohio Moments

Jury wants 10 years for man who shook child
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Constable charged with misconduct
Chandler courts minority voters
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Kentucky to do
Kentucky News Briefs