Saturday, May 29, 2004

Public safety briefs

Two men arrested in '03 bank robbery

The Cincinnati Enquirer

MORGAN TWP. - Butler County sheriff's investigators arrested two men Thursday in a bank robbery that occurred last July.

Andrew Gau, 21, of Hamilton, was charged with aggravated robbery and Kenneth Combs, 37, of Oxford, was charged with complicity to aggravated robbery.

Police allege Gau is the man who entered Lebanon Citizens National Bank in Okeana the morning of July 8, 2003, pulled out a handgun and demanded money. Combs is accused of driving the getaway car, police said.

Police received a tip Thursday that led them to the arrests.

Court backs insurer in festival accident

It's correct for an insurance company to consider as one incident a 1999 Oktoberfest drunken-driving accident in which 23 people were hurt, the Ohio 1st District Court of Appeals has ruled.

The court Friday upheld an earlier ruling that the Progressive Insurance Co. should pay $25,000 to the Greater Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce, which sponsored the event.

Driver Michael Cowperthwaite, of Union Township in Clermont County, admitted he was drunk the night he plowed into the festival crowd on Main Street.

He pleaded guilty in 2000 to 18 charges, including inducing panic, felonious assault and aggravated vehicular assault. He received 141/2 years in prison.

Drug find leads to police chase

NORWOOD - A New Richmond man fought with officers during a traffic stop before leading them on a chase through several communities Friday.

Ronald Cross, 52, is charged with two counts of felonious assault, felony drug possession and felony fleeing and eluding, according to Norwood Police Lt. Tom Williams.

The chase began after a traffic stop at Lawn Avenue and Silver Street in Norwood, during which police found a small amount of cocaine.

Williams said Cross became aggressive with officers and managed to get behind the wheel and speed away even after being subjected to a Taser device.

The pursuit took police through Pleasant Ridge and Silverton, and, at one point, Cross hit a vehicle at Montgomery and Woodmont in Pleasant Ridge.

Police were able to catch him shortly before 9:30 p.m. when Cross pulled into Madisonville Park and started to get out of his car.

Police searching for robbery suspect

NEWPORT - Local police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation were looking for a man who entered PNC Bank Friday, handed a teller a note and left with an unspecified amount of cash.

The incident happened at about 12:30 p.m. Friday at the branch at Monmouth Street and Carothers Road.

The suspect is described as a white male, between 30 and 40 years old, about 5'10," with dark hair and a tanned complexion. He was wearing a dark-colored business suit and a tie.

Anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

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