Officials say two ran drug ring from prison
Authorities say an inmate and ex-inmate are charged in a multistate drug-trafficking ring that used NFL team names as code words in calls from an Ohio prison to set up drug shipments.
Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Neil said Friday in Cincinnati that a current inmate and one released earlier from the London Correctional Institution organized drug trafficking from the prison west of Columbus.
Authorities say the two from Mexico recruited other inmates who were drug-traffickers and arranged drug shipments by phone.
Authorities say the current inmate and other suspects were charged Thursday in Dearborn, Ind., with dealing in narcotics and conspiracy to deal in narcotics.
Neil says authorities have seized dozens of pounds of heroin and cocaine and arrested at least 14 people in the yearlong investigation.
Methodist church appeals ‘refrocking’
A Methodist minister ousted and then reinstated after presiding over his son’s gay marriage says the church is appealing his refrocking.
The Rev. Frank Schaefer says he is disappointed by the appeal, but not surprised.
Schaefer is moving to a California diocese this week after his decision to officiate his son’s 2007 marriage thwarted his church career in Pennsylvania. He has since become a gay rights activist.
In a statement Friday, he says he hopes the church’s Judicial Council will decline to take up the appeal from the counsel for the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference.
The Rev. Christopher Fisher of Schuylkill Haven is the church counsel. He did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Schaefer says he prays for an outcome that would help “heal ... the wounds of homophobia.”
Woman charged in death of former boxing champion
A Cleveland woman is charged with aggravated vehicular homicide in the death of a former national boxing champion who was flung off the hood of the woman’s car and was run over by a different vehicle.
Twenty-three-year-old Sandie Sanderson is jailed under a $25,000 bond. Court records listed no attorney for her Friday.
Sanderson is accused of driving into traffic with 26-year-old Cashmere Jackson on the car hood after a Wednesday altercation at a Cleveland gas station. Jackson fell from the hood, and she was accidentally run over.
Authorities say Jackson had jumped onto Sanderson’s car after it lightly bumped a car that Jackson was riding in.
Jackson won national light welterweight titles in 2010 and 2011. She later was sent to prison for two years on a robbery charge.
Fire kills 5-year-old girl at NW Ohio house
Investigators in Toledo say a northwest Ohio house where an overnight blaze killed a young girl did have working smoke detectors.
The county coroner’s office identified the victim as 5-year-old Olivia Cline.
Reports say Toledo firefighters pulled the girl from a second- story bedroom in the house. Crews searched the home before finding her inside.
A fire department spokesman says the house was filled with smoke when firefighters arrived, and there was no visibility inside the home.
No same-sex weddings at Ohio Statehouse
A board has maintained a policy preventing same-sex couples and others without valid Ohio wedding licenses from renting the Ohio Statehouse and its grounds for weddings and receptions.
A spokesman for the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board, which oversees the Statehouse building and grounds, says a committee reviewed the policy and recommended no changes, which the full board agreed to Thursday.
FreedomOhio, a group supporting same-sex marriage, has said the policy discriminates against gay couples who are prohibited from getting Ohio marriage licenses.
Democratic Rep. Michael Stinziano of Columbus had wanted the policy reviewed, saying the Statehouse also could benefit financially from changing the policy.
The situation could change if same-sex couples win the right to legally marry in Ohio.
Cleveland drops bid to host Dem convention
One is enough for Cleveland.
The Ohio city on Friday officially dropped out of the running to host the Democrats’ presidential convention in 2016. The city already won the Republicans’ convention and it was unlikely the city could host both events.
That leaves Democrats are considering New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Columbus and Birmingham, Ala. DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz is expected to announce a host city either late this year or early in 2015.
Two of the leaders of Cleveland’s convention bids, Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and former Plain Dealer publisher Terry Egger, say the DNC should choose Columbus.