Edward "Ed" Esposito is vice-president, information media for the Rubber City Radio Group. He oversees news and public affairs programs for www.AkronNewsNow.com, 1590 WAKR, 97.5 WONE and 94.9 WQMX. He is Secretary-Treasurer of the Radio Television Digital News Foundation; a former chair of the Radio Television Digital News Association and Foundation and a former president of the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Association. He's also served as a member of the Akron Press Club , Kent State University Student Media Advisory Board, Ohio Open Government Coalition, Northeast Ohio AMBER Task Force. He's lectured on broadcasting and journalism for the University of Missouri in China, as well as across the country for RTDNA and RTDNF. You can reach Ed through the newsroom at 330-864-6397 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org
UPDATE AT 10:22am: The AMBER Alert has been cancelled, as the suspect has been apprehended and the children have been recovered.
Officials have not released any details of the situation.
An AMBER Alert issued in West Virginia extending all the way into Ohio on reports the driver may be on I-77.
Police say Margel Tenney is the 57-year old man thought to be behind the wheel of a red 2003 Taurus, West Virginia plates 2LW 179 -- you're seeing that flashing on ODOT signs today. Thought to be in the car is a 16-year old and seven month old, both girls and both relatives.
Police say the driver is suspected of sexual abuse against the teenager.
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(photo above WSYX-TV Columbus)
AN AMBER ALERT HAS BEEN ISSUED:
VEHICLE WAS POSSIBLY SEEN CROSSING INTO OHIO APPROXIMATELY 9 PM VIA IR 77. SUSPECT IS BEING INVESTIGATED FOR SEXUAL ABUSE AGAINST THE MISSING 16 YEAR OLD.
BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR A MISSING OR ABDUCTED CHILD FROM COUNTY, OH. LAST SEEN ON HC 32 BOX 59 IN THE CITY OF ROCKCAVE UPSHUR AT 3/12/2013 3:00:00 PM.
INFORMATION AS OF 3/13/2013 12:06:05 AM.
THE SUSPECT IS BELIEVED TO BE DRIVING A RED 2003 FORD TAURUS 4D WITH LICENSE PLATE 2LW179 FROM THE STATE OF WV (STATUS IS ACTIVE).
THE CHILD'S NAME IS GRACE HOPE TENNEY (STATUS IS MISSING) AGE 7 MOS OLD. A WHITE FEMALE HEIGHT 2 FEET 4 INCHES WEIGHING 19 POUNDS WITH BLACK HAIR AND BLUE EYES. THE CHILD WAS LAST SEEN HC 32 BOX 59 ROCKCAVE UPSHUR WEST VIRGINIA.
CHILD2: THE CHILD'S NAME IS SHAINA NICOLE TENNEY (STATUS IS MISSING) AGE 16 YRS OLD. A WHITE FEMALE HEIGHT 5 FEET 2 INCHES WEIGHING 225 POUNDS WITH BLACK HAIR AND HAZEL EYES. THE CHILD WAS LAST SEEN HC 32 BOX 59 ROCKCAVE UPSHUR WEST VIRGINIA WEARING BLACK STRETCH PANTS, GREY SHIRT, WHITE TENNIS SHOES,BLACK OR GREY HOODIE.
THE SUSPECT'S NAME IS MARGEL F TENNEY (STATUS IS ACTIVE); SUSPECT IS A WHITE MALE APPROXIMATELY 57 YRS OLD WITH UNKNOWN HAIR BLUE EYES, LAST SEEN WEARING: UNKNOWN. HEIGHT 6 FEET 8 INCHES. WEIGHT 185 POUNDS.
PLEASE CALL 1-877-AMBER-OH (1-877-262-3764) OR DIAL 911 IF YOU SEE THE CHILD, THE SUSPECT OR THE SUSPECT'S VEHICLE
The jury hearing the Craigslist Killings case against Richard Beasley of Akron sat through weeks of testimony and evidence, weighing arguments from prosecutors who said Beasley had a "thirst for blood, a thirst for death" and defenders who tried to paint him as the target of a motorcycle gang he was snitching on.
The jury took less than a day and a half of total deliberations to find Beasley guilty, of all 26 counts, the verdicts read again and again in Summit County Common Pleas Judge Lynne Callahan's courtroom around dinnertime. Families of the victims wept as justice was declared.
The guilty counts included aggravated murder, three counts for the want-ad scheme that lured Ralph Geiger, 56 of Akron; David Pauley, 51, of Norfolk, Virginia; and Timothy Kern, 47, of Massillon to their deaths.
Beasley was also found guilty of attempted murder for trying to kill Scott Davis, the lone survivor wounded in the elbow who hid out in the woods of the Noble County farm where he thought he was in the running for a farmhand job. In reality, he was running for his life but was able to hide for hours until finally making his way to a nearby home for help.
The jury never bought the defense argument and Beasley's contention nearly every prosecution witness was lying. (VIDEO below from WEWS NewsChannel 5)
Davis provided key testimony that now has Beasley, who at one time was a street preacher in Akron, facing sentencing that could land him a date with a needle on Ohio's Death Row.
Brogan Rafferty, the Stow teenager already convicted of helping Beasley, is serving a life sentence for his role in the killings. Rafferty was never called to the stand, even though he was being held in the nearby Medina County Jail on the chance he might be summoned.
Judge Callahan set March 20 for the sentencing phase; the same jury that found Beasley guilty of the heinous murders of three and attempted slaying of a fourth will recommend to Callahan whether the death penalty should apply. Callahan has leeway to accept the jury recommendation or impose a life in prison sentence.
The Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Angels played to a 9-inning scoreless tie this afternoon at Goodyear Ballpark. Today's affair marked the Erie Warriors' first deadlock of the spring, as Cleveland is now 11-6-1 in Cactus League play.
(Cleveland Indians) The Tribe's pitching staff held the Halos to just 6 hits, 5 of which were singles. Lefty SCOTT KAZMIR fanned 4 batters across 4.0 shutout innings against his former team, surrendering just one walk and 3 singles. Kazmir has now tossed 8.0 scoreless IP across 3 starts overall (5 H, 1 BB, 8 SO). JOE SMITH (1.0), DAISUKE MATSUZAKA (1.0), MATT LANGWELL (2.0) and PRESTON GUILMENT (1.0) also helped hold the Angels offense in check, while starter JERED WEAVER (4.0 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 6 SO) and JEROME WILLIAMS (5.0 IP, 5 H, 1 BB, 6 SO) experienced similar returns for Los Angeles.
MICHAEL BOURN had the lone multi-hit effort for Cleveland. The two clubs combined to go 0-for-20 w/ RISP.
Cleveland will have the club's first of just 2 true off days this spring on Tuesday before heading to Camelback Ranch in Glendale on Wednesday to take on the Chicago White Sox at 4:05PM ET. Right-handers UBALDO JIMENEZ and ANDRE RIENZO are scheduled to take the bump for their respective clubs.
Mayor Don Plusquellic may have just found the "smoking gun" in a case that had Akron in an uproar a few weeks back, and critics wondering why the City of Akron was tearing down the house of an Army veteran.
Plusquellic will push tonight for City Council approval for the government to work on Modic's behalf, even though his lawyer earlier turned down the offer, to be made whole. He also wants the City to recoup it's costs of $8399 for tearing the house and the asbestos abatement that came with it.
It turns out the paperwork from a required state disclosure form may be just what the City needs to help Larry Modic get his money back, and the city reimbursed for the money they spent tearing down the house Modic purchased at 1480 Manchester Road. Modic said he was unaware the house had a considerable history with building inspectors and was on the short list for demolition.
The story made headlines in January when appeals to stay a demolition order on property Modic purchased for $10,000; Modic appeared twice before a building appeals board but missed a third meeting and the City went ahead with demolition of the property. The case had plenty of twists and turns, including the bureaucracy of real estate but also the spectacle as Modic himself threatened harm against anyone who came on his property to enforce the order, a threat that eventually led to police oversight of his removal of items from the property before it was torn down. It also had the politically-charged back-and-forth between Akron's administration and frequent Plusquellic critic Warner Mendenhall, who took up Modic's cause.
While the political debate centered on whether it was legal for the City to demolish substandard houses and buildings, the basic question of just how Modic came to buy property he thought was cleared for renovation was never adequately answered. During a conversation with this reporter, Mendenhall said they were aware state disclosure laws put the responsibility of honestly selling the property on the former owner, John Hufnagel. But he stopped short of saying he would file suit against Hufnagel for not disclosing the condition of the house when Modic purchased it, even on a direct question on why they weren't pursuing a legal remedy against the former property owner. Instead, Mendenhall pursued the direction of challenging the City's legal power to demolish the house.
AkronNewsNow even posed the question again when the City Council considered a proposed local regulation to require disclosure, even as the State of Ohio already had existing language and forms available on-line requiring honest disclosure of any building problems prior to the sale.
Now Mayor Plusquellic is using the State of Ohio Residential Property Disclosure Form signed on February 2, 2012 by John and Pauline Hufnagel and on March 8, 2012 as evidence in his bid to have the City pursue Hufnagel not only for the liability Modic suffered when his $10,000 investment was torn down, but also the nearly $8,400 the City spent to demolish the house.
The form, available in .pdf form linked below, indicates the Hufnagel's disclosed there were "problems or defects" with the electrical, plumbing and central heating systems in the house. It also lists "no" to the question of whether the property is subject to "...any violations of housing or building codes, zoning ordinances affecting the property or any nonconforming uses of the property." That's a key issue in the dispute.
Plusquellic contends the liability for the property should be Hufnagel's, not Modic's, and says he is pursuing the issue through Council to "get to the bottom" of the story.
(City of Akron - news release) Today, City of Akron attorneys are delivering to Modic’s attorney a draft complaint against John W. Hufnagel, the person who sold Modic the property, with an offer to file the action on Modic’s behalf. Mayor Don Plusquellic is seeking approval at tonight’s City Council meeting to step in and take action against the responsible party. If City council authorizes the City Law Department to file on behalf of Modic, then a final copy will be delivered to Modic’s attorney tomorrow. (The City is prohibited from filing on Modic’s behalf, without Modic’s approval.)
Mayor Don Plusquellic has made it clear from the beginning, that if Modic is right, and Modic did not know that the property he bought had numerous housing violations and orders, then his attorney should have filed an action on Modic’s behalf against the seller, who withheld those facts.
“If Modic’s attorney really wants justice for Modic, he would have sued the Seller of the property in the first place,” said Mayor Don Plusquellic. “Having not filed such an action on behalf of Modic, the City is ready to step up and file a Complaint on Modic’s behalf to determine once and for all who should be responsible selling a house that was already in housing appeals board process without notifying Modic. This is really the only chance Modic has of recouping his money from the actual wrongdoers.”
Just to recap the facts of this case, Larry Modic purchased a property in Akron for $10,000. Modic then accused the seller (John Hufnagel) of selling him a property that had numerous pending housing code violations, without notifying him of the housing orders. In fact, at the time of the sale, the property was already scheduled for a Housing Appeals Board (HAB) hearing.
Subsequent to the sale, Modic attended two HAB hearings and was given two extensions of time to make the necessary repairs to the property. The City worked with Modic up until the time he failed to attend the last HAB hearing, and he failed to make the necessary repairs. At that time, HAB ruled the property should be demolished. Despite being informed on how to appeal HAB’s order, Modic did not appeal the demolition order.
Modic then proceeded to threaten City employees. Subsequently, a loaded large caliber rifle with scope, two other loaded large caliber rifles, a loaded shotgun, a loaded large caliber handgun, additional ammunition, and body armor was confiscated from the property, and the property was razed.
Despite his allegations against the seller of the property, Modic’s attorney has not pursued any action against the seller, but instead, has brought suit against the City.
Additionally, the Mayor will be urging Council to pass the legislation currently before it, requiring property owners to provide written notice of pending building and/or housing code violations prior to the transfer or sale of property in Akron.
Zip's standout senior center Zeke Marshall led four University of Akron players making the Mid-American Conference all-conference teams announced today.
Marshall, leading the league in blocked shots and with a 13 points-per-game scoring averge, made the First Team. Junior forward Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell is on the second team while Alex Abreu and Jake Kretzer were honorable mention and all-freshman respectively.
Abreu continues to serve out a suspension pending his case on drug trafficking charges filed last week. The Zips are the top seed in the MAC Tournament opening this week at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland; they play Friday night.
(University of Akron athletics) Senior center Zeke Marshall and junior forward Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell headlined four Akron Zips on this year's Mid-American Conference all-conference teams, the league office announced on Monday.
Marshall earned First-Team All-MAC honors while Treadwell was named Second-Team All-MAC. Joining Marshall and Treadwell were Alex Abreu (Honorable Mention All-MAC) and Jake Kretzer (All-Freshman). The four selectees join the 2009 and 2010 seasons as the most players named All-MAC in program history.
"Each of these players had great years and helped this team win a lot of games," ninth-year head coach Keith Dambrot said. "Having four players earn All-MAC honors is a tribute to the balance of this team and I am glad they were recognized for their hard work and sacrifices for that balance."
Marshall led the league in blocked shots (3.6 bpg) and finished in the top-15 in field goal percentage (1st, .659), rebounds (7th, 6.9 rpg), offensive rebounding (7th, 2.5 rpg), defensive rebounding (8th, 4.4 rpg) and scoring (11th, 13.0 ppg). Marshall was a second-team All-MAC selection in 2012.
Treadwell earned his first All-MAC selection after averaging 11.2 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. The junior from Euclid, Ohio, is shooting .506 from the field and is tied for fourth in the MAC with seven double-doubles this season.
Abreu, a Second-Team All-MAC selection last season, averaged 10.3 points and 6.0 assists in the regular season while finishing top-five in the league in assists (3rd, 6.0 apg), assist-to-turnover ratio (3rd, 2.0) and free throw shooting percentage (5th, .810).
Kretzer is the eighth Zip to earn a spot on the MAC All-Freshman team and the first since Marshall made it in 2010. He finished in the top-10 among MAC freshmen in 3-pointer percentage (4th, .346), rebounding (9th, 3.2 rpg) and points (10th, 6.0 ppg). He made four starts and appeared in all 30 games.
The league will announce the Freshman and Defensive Players of the Year, as well as the Sixth Man Award, on Tuesday. Coach and Player of the Year will be announced on Wednesday.
The Zips will open the MAC Tournament as the No. 1 seed and will play in the semifinals on Friday, March 15, at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m. ET and the contest will air live on SportsTime Ohio.
All-MAC First Team
Zeke Marshall, C, Akron
Javon McCrea, F, Buffalo
Chris Evans, W/F, Kent State
Rian Pearson, G, Toledo
D.J. Cooper, G, Ohio
All-MAC Second Team
Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell, F, Akron
Jauwan Scaife, G, Ball State
A'uston Calhoun, F, Bowling Green
Kyle Randall, G, Central Michigan
Shayne Whittington, F/C, Western Michigan
All-MAC Third Team
Majok Majok, F, Ball State
Randal Holt, G, Kent State
Walter Offutt, G, Ohio
Reggie Keely, F, Ohio
Julius "Juice" Brown, G, Toledo
Alex Abreu, G, Akron
Jordon Crawford, G, Bowling Green
Glenn Bryant, F, Eastern Michigan
Will Felder, F, Miami
Nate Hutcheson, F, Western Michigan
MAC All-Freshman Team
Jake Kretzer, G/F, Akron
Jarryn Skeete, G, Buffalo
Chris Fowler, G, Central Michigan
Nathan Boothe, C, Toledo
Darius Paul, F, Western Michigan
Medina parents packed the Performing Arts Center Friday night as the flap over Superintendent Dr. Randy Stepp's contract continues to inflame emotions -- despite Stepp's decision to give back $100,000 worth of bonus and merit increases included in his five-year contract.
Channel 3 News reports the Board of Education defended their decision, saying Stepp was worth it. Stepp noted his heart was in the right place, while every leader doesn't always make the best decisions. He also told the TV station not every superintendent had an MBA, and that boosted his value in his position.
But that advanced degree didn't set well with some, who criticized the Board paying for the MBA and other degrees Stepp earned. Parents also noted the District doesn't have busing due to cost-cutting, and pay-to-play fees associated with athletics and other after-school activities are among the highest in the region.
Medina teachers are scheduled to vote next week on a new contract; voters in the school district also have a levy to consider in May's election.
It's not St. Patrick's Day -- yet -- but downtown Akron's streets will have plenty of green today for the annual parade. It starts at noon with downtown traffic impacted.
The following Downtown Akron streets will be closed Saturday, March 9, from noon-1:30 p.m. for the St. Patrick's Day Parade:
Main St. northbound between Bartges/Mill
Main St. southbound between Mill/Cedar
E. Exchange St. westbound between Broadway/Main
W. Exchange St. eastbound between Paul Williams/Main
Buchtel between High/Main
State St. between Bowery/High - access to the State St. parking deck maintained.
University between High/Main
Church between High/Main
Bowery between Center/Main
Without the services of starting point guard Alex Abreu following his arrest on drug trafficking charges the Zips had a tough hill to climb beating neighborhood rival Kent State in the regular-season closing Wagon Wheel game. Despite a hard rally in the second half, the University of Akron squad fell short in sending a message they were whole and ready to go heading into next week's MAC Tournament rounds.
(University of Akron athletics) Despite a late second-half rally, The University of Akron men's basketball team lost 68-64 to neighborhood rival Kent State on Friday at James A. Rhodes Arena in the latest edition of the PNC Wagon Wheel Challenge.
The loss snapped a five-game win streak for the Zips (24-6, 14-2 Mid-American) against the Flashes (19-12, 9-7 MAC) and ended a 15-game home win streak.
Three Akron players scored in double-figure points, led by Zeke Marshall's 14, Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell's 13 and Reggie McAdams' 12. Treadwell also grabbed 13 rebounds to tally his seventh double-double of the year. Marshall had eight boards for the Zips who out-rebounded the Flashes 44-39 overall and 24-12 on the offensive glass.
With his five blocked shots, Marshall also set the MAC's single-season blocked shots record with 109.
Kent State was led by Darren Goodson's 19 points and team-high eight rebounds.
Treadwell and Marshall got the Akron faithful on their feet to start the second half, scoring six points in the lane to spark the offense. The 6-2 run forced Kent State to call timeout with its lead reduced to 42-31.
The Golden Flashes responded and went into the under-12 media timeout leading 46-32.
Akron once again trimmed the lead down to 11 (50-39) with 8:50 left, in which the lead would hover there for the next few minutes. A 9-3 run would put the Zips back in the game, capped off by a Chauncey Gilliam floater, cutting the deficit to 57-51 heading into the final three minutes of the game.
With KSU up nine, the Jake Kretzer and McAdams hit back-to-back 3-pointers to cut the deficit to 64-61 with 28 seconds remaining. Akron would then start fouling to conserve clock. However, the Zips would not be able to overcome the deficit and would fall 68-64.
The Zips scored the first two buckets of the game, both by Marshall with the assist from Carmelo Betancourt, but made just two of their next 10 shots to fall behind 14-9 by the 11:31 media timeout.
Akron kept the margin close until back-to-back buckets gave the Golden Flashes a 26-15 lead with 7:50 left in the opening half. Three minutes later, the Akron deficit was 34-18, forcing the Zips to call timeout with 4:46 left in the half.
The Kent State lead would remain in double figures as Akron went to the locker room down 40-25.
The Zips finished the first 20 minutes shooting 34.4 percent from the field and 18.2 percent from behind the arc. Kent State shot 46.7 percent in the opening half and forced eight UA turnovers, while the rebounding battle was knotted at 19-all.
Treadwell led the Zips with six points and four boards in the half. Betancourt, McAdams and Marshall finished with five points each. Betancourt finished with three assists, one steal and one turnover.
The Zips will open the MAC Tournament as the No. 1 seed and will play in the semifinals on Friday, March 15, at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m. ET and the contest will air live on SportsTime Ohio.
Zips Notebook: The Zips honored seniors Chauncey Gilliam, Zeke Marshall and Brian Walsh before the game ... Carmelo Betancourt made his second-collegiate start, his first since starting the season opener at Coastal Carolina on Nov. 9 ... Akron leads the PNC Wagon Wheel Challenge 5.5-3.5 following tonight's outcome ... Marshall passed Ohio's Patrick Flomo (105) for the MAC's single-season blocked shots mark with his second swat of the night ... tonight's 24 offensive rebounds marked the fourth time this year the Zips had 20-plus boards on the offensive glass.
Northeast Ohio girl scouts have a new top scout; the organization hiring Jane Christyson to fill the voice left by the now-retired Daisy Alford-Smith.
(Girls Scouts of Northeast Ohio) A new Chief Executive Officer with over 30 years of nonprofit management experience will lead Girl Scouts of North East Ohio (GSNEO) into the next century of Girl Scouting. After a national search, the GSNEO board unanimously approved Jane Christyson at its meeting on March 6. She will begin her new role on Monday, March 18, 2013.
“I believe my background in Girl Scouts and my professional experiences have prepared me well for this position,” said Christyson. “I have seen firsthand in my troop what girls can accomplish in Girl Scouting, and it is inspiring. I am eager to work with our volunteers, staff, board and community partners throughout Northeast Ohio to further the mission and provide even more girls with leadership experiences.”
Christyson served as Cleveland Metroparks Director of Marketing for 24 years, establishing the department and overseeing four divisions: Marketing, Research and Program Evaluation, Visitor Services, and Visual Communications. She also had responsibility for the Golf Clubhouse division for ten years. Christyson began her career at United Way Services of Cleveland in 1980 and served in several fund-raising capacities. She then became executive director of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in 1984, before joining Cleveland Metroparks in 1989.
She is a member of many professional groups, a board member of the Press Club of Cleveland, and active with the Marketing Committee for the Ohio & Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor. She has spoken at many national conferences in the United States and internationally in Australia and Panama.
Christyson is a resident of Strongsville, Ohio, where she lives with her husband Bob Mahoney and daughter Bridget, a Girl Scout. Christyson, too, was a Girl Scout for 10 years and earned the First Class Award (now known as the Gold Award). She has been a Girl Scout leader for seven years of Troop 71410 and has enjoyed working with the girls and watching them develop into leaders.
“Without a doubt, Jane is the best leader for our council at this time,” said Joan Villarreal, board chair of Girl Scouts of North East Ohio. “She is a strong role model for the 40,000 girls and 14,000 adults she will lead, and it helps that she already has a presence in Northeast Ohio.”
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