Wednesday, January 31, 2007


The Background
When the school season began for Elyria High last September they were plagued with many high profile fights and disturbances in and around the area of the school. In one case a worker in the cafeteria sustained fractured ribs while trying to break up a fight. The largest fight, involving about 2 dozen students, was on Middle Ave. near Sederis. That fight drew a dozen Elyria Police Officers to break it up and disperse the very large crowd that had assembled to watch. In response to the fights the school system hired Whittguard Security services, a private security firm out of Lorain, to help control the problems. The Company was hired in November at a rate of $240.00 a day, providing 2 guards patrolling the hallways and a patrol car that would drive around the building and neighborhood. Neighbors had complained to school officials about the fights and students loitering in general. Elyria High has a program called “Open Lunch” which allows older students to leave the school and get lunch from area restaurants alleviating the overcrowding in the school’s cafeteria.

The Security Personnel
was approached a couple weeks ago with concerns about the security personnel working for Whittguard. It was discovered that several of the security guards have criminal records. On the Whittguard company website they claim the following:
“All of our officers have had extensive background checks by the State of Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation and are drug tested and fingerprinted upon date of hire.”

Our staff took some of the employee’s names from Whittguard and reviewed court records in Elyria and Lorain Municipal Courts as well as the Lorain County Common Pleas Court. We found that several of the employees have criminal records involving Domestic Violence, DUI, Assaults, Resisting Arrest and others. We have listed some of the information that we found.

Edward J. Garza was arrested on November 12, 2005 by the Lorain County Sheriff’s Department for Theft. Elyria Municipal Court issued a Warrant for Mr. Garza for “failure to appear” in relation to this case on September 7, 2006. That warrant was served on Mr. Garza while on duty with Whittguard Security.

Speer, Ernest
January 31, 1999 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for Assault, Disorderly Conduct and persisting.
May 25, 1999 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for Domestic Violence
September 29, 1999 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for telephone harassment.
November 25, 1999 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for Unauthorized use of plates and driving under suspension.
March 11, 2001 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for assault and disorderly conduct.
February 24, 2004 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for assault and domestic violence.
January 6, 2004 arrested by the Lorain County Sheriff’s Department for Unauthorized use of plates, expired plates and contempt.

Speer, John
January 1, 2006 arrested by the Elyria Police Department for resisting arrest and assault on a Police Officer. In this incident Elyria Police Officers were trying to arrest Speer’s brother on a warrant when John began fighting with them. Police had to use pepper spray to help subdue Speer.

Taylor, George W
Mr. Taylor’s record is filled with traffic offences including, driving with no plates, driving under suspension, running a red light, failure to control, DUI 10% or more and no lighted plates. All arrests were made by the Lorain Police Department.

Whittguard Response
TMC NEWS and NewsChannel 5 went to the home office of Whittguard Security in Lorain to speak with James Whitt; the owner of Whittguard. Mr. Whitt welcomed us into his home and discussed the situation at length. When asked about the employees who have criminal records he said that most are minor misdemeanors or misdemeanor charges and not felonies. Whitt went onto say that some of the issues that we brought to his attention were new to him. Whitt said that in the state of Ohio you can work as a security guard as long as you do not have a felony charge. One employee had a felony he said but had it expunged from his record. “Everyone is entitled to have a felony expunged from their record once in their lifetime.”

Whitt said that the two men he has working at the Elyria High School site have clean records, with the exception of a DUI and other traffic related offences.
“I will review all of the documents you have shown me today and review all the records of our employees and where action is needed such as suspension or termination I will do it.”

Whitt invited us back to visit with him to follow up on the actions he has taken and changes that he will make within his company. TMC NEWS will take him up on that offer.
School Response
When we sat with Superintendent Paul Rigda he explained to us how the process worked when the schools first hired Whittguard Security. “We wanted to make sure that the two guards placed in the building would fit certain requirements, we wanted people who would work well with the kids, people who were not overly aggressive and could control situations in the building. So far the feed back that we have received from our staff and from the school resource officer has been very positive toward the security guards.” When asked what would happen if one of those two guards called in sick and a replacement was needed Mr. Rigda said that was covered in the initial agreement with Whittguard. “If one of the two guards that work in our building call in sick then we have asked that Mr. Whitt himself cover that person, the other option instead of bringing in a different guard that we were not familiar with was to just drop down to one guard that day.”

Before the two guards were placed in the building at Elyria High School the Superintendent said he reviewed the employee’s applications to Whittguard and even though Mr. Whitt had shown verification of the guards certifications and back ground checks, the school contacted the state of Ohio to double check and to get a better understanding of what the certifications meant. “It’s not that we didn’t trust Mr. Whitt, it’s just that we wanted to double check and to also get a better understanding of what all the numbers meant.”

When asked what the future holds for the relationship between the Elyria City Schools and Whittguard Security Mr. Rigda said that they will review the contract but to say now that things will change is premature. “I will say that although we are happy with the guards that are working within our building, it would concern me if the company (Whittguard) did not have the same stringent requirements for their employees company wide, so that is something that we will look at and discuss with Mr. Whitt.”

TMC NEWS will continue to follow this story and bring you an update in a couple of weeks after we speak again with Mr. Whitt. For more on this story, tune in tonight to NewsChannel 5 at 6 and 11.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


A Lake Effect Snow Advisory remains in effect until 10am Wednesday. The National Weather Service has issued the Advisory saying that Lorain County should expect snow accumulations between 3 to 5 inches through this evening with additional 2 to 4 inches over night. The Advisory points to the northern half of Lorain County as the area to be hardest hit. The snow will become more snow showery this afternoon and tonight behind a cold front that has moved through the county late this morning. This allows lake effect snow showers and squalls from Lake Erie to come onshore.

As Mark Johnson, Chief Meteorologist NewsChannel 5, continually tells us, the heaviest snowfall will be “where squalls persist.”

So if you live in Lorain, get the cars off the road and the shovels out of the garage.


EMERGENCY PARKING BAN is now in effect for the city of Lorain due to heavy snowfall. Lorain Police tells us that the ban goes from noon today until noon tomorrow. Police advise that if you want to know if your street falls under this ban logon to

Monday, January 29, 2007


Lorain Police are investigating an incident at a Lorain Elementary School where one third grade boy was caught performing a sexual act on another third grade boy in a school hallway. The child told authorities that he learned the behavior from his father’s pornography, a claim his parents deny. Although Children Services have been notified no charges are expected.

Detective Mark Carpentiere said they get reports all the time of children engaged in such acts, and he said such incidents are always cause for concern because it could be a red flag for abuse.
Police said the incident was consensual, but experts said parents in this and similar cases should be aware of signs that their child is suffering from a traumatic event. Signs such as trouble sleeping, nightmares, bed-wetting and change in appetite could be signs that a child is in need of help.

The school is considering disciplinary action against the two boys. The school will be sent home Tuesday to inform students of the incident.

Sunday, January 28, 2007


Snowy roads are the cause of a single car roll over on Lear Nagle Road just north of Detroit Road late Sunday afternoon. Avon Police say that Stephen Ristagno of Avon Lake was driving north on Nagle when he lost control of his car and slid into a ditch rolling the car over. Avon Fire Department with the assistance of Avon Lake Fire Department extricated and treated Ristagno then transported him to an area hospital.

Avon Police say that no alcohol or drugs were involved and that no citations would be issued.


The snow returned late Saturday night just as a couple dozen kids in Lakewood crawled into cardboard boxes on the front lawns of two local churches to get a few winks. The kids were “homeless for a night” to draw attention to the homeless situation in Northeast Ohio. Currently Northeast Ohio has approximately 25,000 homeless people, 9,000 of which are families and 2,000 of which are children.

Chris Roberts, 17 of Avon Lake, is participating in the Sleep Out for the second year in a row. “We are trying to raise awareness of the homeless in our area.” Roberts will be graduating this year and although he will be away at college next year he plans on making the trip back to participate in the Sleep Out again saying, “It’s a good feeling to know that you are doing something good for the community.”

Laura Leatherman, 16, is participating for the 3rd time. “I wasn’t aware that there were homeless people in Lakewood before this. It really woke me up to how bad the situation is. I am freezing cold, I get really cold just walking around school and I can’t even imagine how bad it must be for the homeless who have to live like this every day.” Leatherman said they have had homeless people stop by and thank them for what they are doing. “We talked with them for awhile and we offered them some of our pizza and I know some have gone inside to get warmed up.”

Donations of food and cash for the homeless are typically high during the holiday season but drop off after New Years, the Sleep Out hopes to change that. “The weather in our area is worse in January and February then in November and December, people need to not forget the problem after the holidays are over.”
To see all photos: CLICK HERE

Friday, January 26, 2007


Sheffield Village Fire Department responded Friday afternoon to an office on Meadow Lane Court after a pick up truck slammed into the building. The crash cause structural damage to the building and moderate damage to the truck but no injuries were reported.

Sheffield Village Police Department is investigating the crash.


Traffic on I-90 this morning was backed up for miles after several traffic crashes. The first of at least 5 crashes occurred on the Black River Bridge, as that crash was being cleared up the next call came in for a crash on the bridge over Route 57. Shortly after that Elyria Police responded to I-90, eastbound near the Route 57 South ramp for two more crashes. Traffic was backed up past Middle Ridge Road waiting to get past that crash site. Once those cars got past and started driving at a normal rate of speed for I-90 again they were met with more brake lights just past Route 254. Another crash in the eastbound lane near Route 611 was the cause of that back up.

In all crashes only minor injuries were reported.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Amherst Firefighters had to extricate a 25 year old female from her car after she slammed her car into a utility pole on Middle Ridge Road east of Oberlin Road. LifeCare Ambulance Paramedics treated the female and transported her to Amherst Hospital. She was cited by the State Patrol for failure to control and not having identification.


North Ridgeville Fire Department Paramedics responded to Sugar Ridge Road just west of Race Road for an accident Thursday afternoon around 3. Elyria Firefighters responded for mutual aid when it was first reported that a vehicle had rolled over. When Firefighters arrived they found a pick up truck had gone off the snow covered road and into a front yard taking out a fire hydrant flooding the yard. City workers arrived a short time later to turn off the water. No injuries were reported. North Ridgeville Police are investigating the crash.


Hazel’s Restaurant on Cleveland Street in Elyria, like all restaurants in the city, has gone smoke free. “We had a lot of people in at first but now nobody is coming in. We lost some regulars, they don’t come around anymore but we have some die hard customers who say they will never leave us.”

The people at Hazel’s got so frustrated waiting for the non smokers to come into their smoke free environment, they posted the question on their outside sign. Time will tell if the sign will work in bringing the non smokers or the old regulars back inside.


Elyria Fire Department, while responding to an alarm activation on Olive Street, received a report of a working fire at Parker Hannifin on Ternes. Assistant Chief Ron Brlas said that at that point he had Engine 2, the Engine who handles the Olive Street district; continue to the alarm while the rest responded to Parker Hannifin. “When we arrived we found that we had an industrial building, approximately 30,000 square feet that was fully charged with smoke. We were informed by the plant manager that two workers were still unaccounted for.”

Firefighters began laying attack lines from the north end of the building and found the fire to be in a dust collector approximately 20 feet off the ground. “The fire appeared to be contained to this unit, so we let the fire go and decided that ventilation was more important. Working with the plant manager we activated six large ceiling fans that helped draw the smoke from the building. It was about this time that the two missing workers were located safely on the exterior.”

After visibility improved, Firefighters disassembled the dust collector and finished extinguishing the fire.

The damage estimate for the building was $40,000.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


As most of you already know, TMC NEWS offers our readers “Breaking News Email Alerts”. We have had several hundred people sign up for this free service already and would like to add more in 2007. If you are a new reader to TMC NEWS and would like to be added to our list, just send the request to – You will be added to the list within 24 hours. There is no charge for this feature and we NEVER share your information with anyone.

To those who have already signed up, share TMC NEWS with your family and friends, especially those who have moved away but like to keep up with what is happening back home.

TMC NEWS: the FIRST in the area to bring you “Breaking News Email Alerts”!

Sunday, January 21, 2007


A car heading east on Middle Ridge Road just east of Route 58 lost control and crashed head on into a tree trapping the driver and two passengers inside. Amherst Firefighters were called to the scene to extricate the three victims. LifeCare Ambulance Paramedics treated the three and transported them to Amherst Hospital. The vehicle speed was estimated at 60 miles per hour before the crash.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating the crash. Check back to TMC NEWS for details as they become available.
To see more photos: CLICK HERE

Saturday, January 20, 2007


A car traveling on South Island Road Saturday night went off the road, rolled over and came to rest in a ditch on its side. The occupants were able to free themselves from the vehicle before Eaton Township Fire & Rescue arrived on scene. Two people were treated for injuries sustained in the crash and taken to the hospital. No other vehicles were involved in the crash.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.


Governor Ted Strickland has issued reprieves to three Death Row inmates yesterday, including James Filiaggi. In the Warrant of Reprieve the Governor states, “During my tenure as Governor, before I allow an execution to proceed, my staff and I will have conducted a comprehensive, thorough and searching review of the case to determine if any exercise of executive clemency is appropriate. The brief time I have been Governor has not allowed me sufficient time to conduct that type of review and there is not sufficient time before these scheduled executions to complete that type of review.”

Filiaggi, who was to be executed on April 24, 2007, along with the other two will remain incarcerated in the custody of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction. The Warrant goes on to say that the Department should carry out the inmate’s sentences on the last date of their respective reprieves at a time established on that date by the Department.


The Elkhart Police Department and the State of Indiana issued the Amber Alert after the children were abducted at gunpoint from 2009 Francis Street in Elkhart. The mother is with them.

Jaylan Walker, 9 years of age. He is a black male, 4 feet tall, and weighs 60 pounds. He was last seen wearing green pants, and a striped green shirt with a beige coat.
Justin Walker, 8 years of age. He is a black male. He is 4 feet tall and 60 pounds. He was last seen wearing a navy blue fleece warm-up outfit and a blue coat.
Kyra Walker, 6 years of age. She's a black female 3 feet tall and 35 pounds. She was last seen wearing beige pants, a pink coat, and blue shoes.
Kayla walker, 16 months old. She is a black female last seen wearing beige pants, a burgundy coat, and a cream colored hat.

The children were last seen at 11:27 EST at the time of the abduction, and they are believed to be in extreme danger.

The suspect is Jerry D. White, 30-year-old black male. He is 5 feet 10 inches tall, 165 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.
The vehicle is either a 2000 Red 4-door Dodge Intrepid with Illinois plate 9613090 or a 1993 Beige 2-door Saturn with Indiana plate 200T1089.

The suspect is alleged to have shot one person just prior to abducting the children. He also abducted the children's mother, Kimberly N. Walker. She's 31 years of age, black female, 5 feet 6 inches tall and 105 pounds. She was last seen wearing jeans, a navy and light blue jacket, and tennis shoes. The suspect is armed and dangerous.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Elkhart Police Department at 888-582-6237 or dial 911.


Michael Hamilton has been charged with Aggravated Vehicular Homicide, Driving Under Suspension, Reckless Operation and leaving the scene of an accident, in the death of Christopher Pauley.

Last Sunday Hamilton and Pauley were driving at high rates of speed west on Route 2 when both vehicles slowed down then sped back up (brake-checking). Witnesses calling 9-1-1 estimated their speeds at 100 miles per hour. Police were able to track Hamilton down the next morning after witnesses provided them with the license plate number off of Hamilton’s car. Hamilton, who was driving under suspension at the time of the crash, has told Police that he saw the crash but kept driving because he was scared.

Hamilton was released from Vermilion Police Department on bond and is due in court Tuesday.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Kelly Fowler was getting her two daughters off to bed Wednesday night when she started to smell smoke in her Blaine Street home. Fowler sat down again but began to investigate as the smell became stronger throughout the house. “I looked through the entire house sniffing everywhere and I could smell smoke and heard crackling so I knew something was wrong." It was when Fowler looked out the window and saw the flames that she knew it was time to act, “it was very quick.” Fowler got her two daughters out of the house immediately and then called 9-1-1.

Although Fowler got her two children out of the house she ran back into the smoke, using her sweater as a mask to retrieve something else very important to her. “I went back in for jewelry that belonged to my Mother and I had to go back in to get them.” One of the pieces Fowler was wearing around her neck, a pendant with her Mothers thumbprint.
"When I got back outside the Fire Department was already showing up, they were very quick and I have to say they were very kind to us.”

An early damage estimate is in the neighborhood of $60,000.00, twenty thousand for the room and content and forty thousand in structural damages. Construction crews were on scene around midnight boarding up the house to secure it for the evening.

Fowler says the family cat is still missing but believes he will be back, “he is probably just scared but he will come back home soon.” Faith is helping Fowler cope with this situation, “I believe that everything happens for a reason, there is a reason this happened to us. I am just glad that we all made it out safe.”


Westwood Elementary School in Wellington has closed the school for the rest of the week due to wide spread illness. The school has said that 120 of the 430 students are out sick with flu like symptoms. Victor Cardenzana, the Wellington School’s Superintendent, decided to close the school for the rest of the week due to the large number of students out sick. Cardenzana said that I his 18 years as Superintendent he has never seen an illness spread this fast among students.

Amanda Bonnallie has a daughter, Aeriel, in the second grade at Westwood Elementary and she has been hit by the bug. “My daughter started off with a stuffy nose and feeling dizzy and progressed to a very high fever and vomiting. My nephew had a fever, sore throat, and vomiting. My niece had a low-grade temp and chest congestion. All the parents I know that have kids that go to my daughter's school have taken their children to the doctors and everyone so far have had to put their kids on antibiotics.”

Bonnallie said she is glad they finally shut the school down but feels they should have done something Tuesday when she first called her daughter off sick. “I was told then that 75 other students were either sent home or called in sick, that's when somethig should have been done."

Aeriel will be heading back to Westwood on Monday but Mom is still a little nervous. “I'm a little nervous about sending her back because obviously something in the school is getting all of these children sick. At first I thought is was just a coincidence that my niece was sick because she spent the night but knowing that many children where sick is kind of scary.”

Wellington’s Middle School and High School will remain open for the rest of the week.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Lorain Police responded to a home on West 25th Street this morning after receiving a call of a person shot and laying in the front yard.

“When our Officers arrived they did find a victim laying in the front yard, The Officers got the victim out of harms way and coordinated with the Paramedics from LifeCare Ambulance to get them medical attention.” Lorain Police Lieutenant Mize

The victim was transported to Community Health Partners for further treatment.

Lorain SWAT members arrived and searched the home for the suspect. Lt. Mize said that the search found the home empty but they wanted to error on the side of caution.

The case is being investigated by the Lorain Police Department

To see all photos: CLICK HERE

Monday, January 15, 2007


TMC NEWS has obtained EXCLUSIVE video footage that was shot moments after the crash on Route 2. The video is unedited and graphic. The video has been posted on our SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT section.

Updated: 8pm
Vermilion Police have released the name of the victim who was killed in the crash on Route 2 last night. Christopher Allen Pauley, 19, of Vermilion was driving his 1994 Camaro on Route 2 at a high rate of speed and weaving in and out of traffic according to officials before crossing the median and crashing into the eastbound semi. Police Officials say this was a case of road rage between Pauley and another motorist driving an Eagle Talon on Rt. 2. They believe the driver of the Talon check-braked Pauley somewhere in the Elyria area upsetting Pauley. Witnesses took down the license plate number of the Talon as it fled from the scene of the crash, Police caught up to the driver. The Police continue to question that driver as the investigation into the fatal crash goes on. It will be up to the prosecutor to decide whether charges will be filed.

Pauley was ejected from the vehicle just before the Camaro burst into flames setting the semi on fire as well. The driver of the semi was able to jump from his cab escaping with only minor injuries.Pauley was born in Lorain but resided in Vermilion with his parents. Pauley was a Pittsburgh Steelers fan and loved photography, especially nature photography. On Pauley’s MySpace page he responded to the question, Goal to achieve this year: Stay Alive and when asked on MySpace to list his hero, Pauley wrote, My Mom.

Taylor Labis spoke with TMC NEWS about her close friend saying that Chris was an all around great guy who was very loving and caring. “He always knew how to make me smile and was always a fun person to be around. He is loved and will be missed.”

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Police have Rt. 2 eastbound lanes closed from Route 60 to Baumhart Rd after a car drove head on into a semi, killing the driver of the car. The driver of the semi was able to jump out of his cab seconds before it caught on fire, escaping serious injuries. The collision was so severe it split the car into two pieces spreading debris over a large area of the highway.

Details of the crash are still under investigation, check back to TMC NEWS for updates.

To see more photos: CLICK HERE


There have been rumors floating around Lorain County about the future of Metro Life Flight; TMC NEWS went direct to Life Flight Officials to discuss the rumors and the future of their helicopter service.

First the rumors:
1. Metro Life Flight will change staffing from Physician/Nurse to Nurse/Medic
2. Metro Life Flight will be purchasing smaller aircrafts.

Now the facts:
On Monday, November 20, the Board of Trustees of The MetroHealth System approved a report recommending the purchase of three new helicopters to replace the current Metro Life Flight fleet. “As the region’s leader in trauma and critical care transport, we are reinvesting in our commitment to provide our community with the most highly trained medical rescue teams, the most advanced aviation technology, and the highest standards of safety and excellence in the industry,” said Donna Kelly Rego, Board chair.

“Our outstanding flight physicians, nurses and pilots will continue to be able to save lives in a new fleet of helicopters equipped with the most advanced avionics to fly long distances, even in inclement weather,” said John F. Sideras, President and Chief Executive Officer of The MetroHealth System.
Sideras said that the Life Flight staff will play a large roll in the selection process of the new fleet. “As part of the selection and purchase process, the Metro Life Flight crew will have an opportunity to design the interior space of the new helicopters in clinically innovative ways, based on their years of experience and skill, to once again redefine a standard of care that is unmatched in the critical care industry. This will allow us to continue providing the safest form of transport for critically ill and injured patients as we convey them to MetroHealth and other tertiary facilities.”

TMC NEWS has learned that the Board has authorized 20 million dollars for the purchase of the three new helicopters. The Board has also engaged Booz Allen Hamilton, nationally known consultants in the aeronautic industry, to assist MetroHealth administration in evaluating replacement options for the aging fleet.

The selection of new helicopters will be based on several factors:
* Exceptional safety record
* Size and capability to fly dual pilot with Instrument Flight Rated (IFR) certification, enhancing safety and efficiency even in inclement weather
* Aircraft speed and range, capable of flying in excess of 130 mph and distances of at least 120 miles round trip to service MetroHealth’s primary regional market
* Cabin volume in excess of 135 cubic feet with the ability to design the cabin space to meet safety and efficiency needs of the patient, physician and nurse on board.
* The ability to provide maintenance and service in a fiscally sound and efficient manner.

Speaking with the Metro Life Flight Chief Flight Physician, Dr. John Pakiela, he is proud not only of the past 25 years but of what the future holds for Life Flight. "For the past 25 years and for over 60,000 consecutive, accident-free transports, the mission of Metro Life Flight has been to bring the highest level of care to the patient, whether on scene or through interhospital transports.” Further, Dr. Pakiela stated that, "Metro Life Flight currently has the only 24 hour bases that serve Lorain County."

When asked about the staffing rumors Dr. Pakiela said, “We believe that the team to accomplish this mission is a critical care physician and nurse. This has been our standard of care and it will not change.” Dr. Pakiela says that Life Flight has always enjoyed a good relationship with agencies in the Lorain County area; “We have had great success in working closely with the safety forces and medical professionals in the area and transported over 600 patients in Lorain County in 2006. We look forward to continuing this true team effort."

TMC NEWS spoke with several Fire Chiefs in the County to find out how they felt about Metro Life Flight’s service.

"Amherst Fire District has used Metro Life Flight quite often; they have been a real asset to us on the Ohio Turnpike and also State Route 2 not to mention other roadways as well. Having a doctor on board has enhanced care and well being of victims, I am happy that the rumor is false about replacing the doc."
Assistant Chief Jim Wilhelm, Amherst Fire Department

"The Doctor/Nurse flight crew is what we feel is the best possible service our patients in the Wellington Fire District service. They have always provided excellent service and care for the patients in Lorain County."
Chief Bob Walker, Wellington Fire District

"They do a great job and as the old saying goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. In Carlisle we have never had a problem with their medical staff or flight crews. The Pilots have always let us know how our landing zones are and if we can improve them."
Chief Russ Gardner, Carlisle Township Fire

"I am happy to hear that they are keeping the nurse/physician combo on the helicopters. There are times when it is great to have a physician at the scene to help the EMS providers."
Assistant Chief Brian Bell, Elyria Township Fire

So there you are, another rumor put to rest by TMC NEWS.

Friday, January 12, 2007


Hundreds of people were without power late Thursday night in Lorain after a car took out a utility pole at the intersection of Oakdale and W. 20th. The driver fled the scene after the crash.
Lorain Police are investigating the crash.


LifeCare Ambulance Paramedics responded just after midnight to Republic Engineered Products (REP), formally known as USS Kobe Steel, after a worker slipped and fell off of a ledge. It was first thought that the man had fallen 50 feet off of a crane but it was later learned that he had fallen more than 100 feet off of a ledge while cleaning an area near a crane.

The victim, 35-year-old Jose Diaz, was an employee for Superior Environmental Solutions out of Cincinnati, the firm hired to clean REP. Police reports say that Diaz after climbing a ladder went to step onto a small ledge end either slipped or tripped on a steel rail. Diaz attempted to grab a rope near by but it was just out of his reach.

LifeCare Paramedics on scene began treating Diaz but the head injuries were too severe. Paramedics did praise the efforts of the First Responders at REP and the job they did before their arrival.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Elyria Police Department received a call for assistance from Juvenile Probation Wednesday afternoon as they were searching for a 15-year-old black male who was driving a red Ford Escape in the area of on Middle Ave. near 8th Place. An Officer patrolling the area at the time of the call observed a red Ford Escape traveling westbound on 15th Street and recognized the driver to be the male they were searching for. The Officer turned around and lit up the vehicle, the male turned into the back parking lot of Frank’s Market at the corner of 15th & West Ave, the male bailed out and fled the area.

Elyria Police Officers surrounded the area and gave chase for several minutes. Officers tracked the driver and took him into custody in the 300 block of 12th Street.

The juvenile has been charged with, Obstructing Official Business, Resisting Arrest, Criminal Trespass and Juvenile-Unruly Child.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


White House photo by Eric Draper
President George W. Bush announced tonight in an address to the nation that he will be sending another 20,000+ troops into Iraq.

Here are a couple excerpts:
The situation in Iraq is unacceptable to the American people -- and it is unacceptable to me. Our troops in Iraq have fought bravely. They have done everything we have asked them to do. Where mistakes have been made, the responsibility rests with me.This is a strong commitment. But for it to succeed, our commanders say the Iraqis will need our help. So America will change our strategy to help the Iraqis carry out their campaign to put down sectarian violence and bring security to the people of Baghdad. This will require increasing American force levels. So I've committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq. The vast majority of them -- five brigades -- will be deployed to Baghdad. These troops will work alongside Iraqi units and be embedded in their formations. Our troops will have a well-defined mission: to help Iraqis clear and secure neighborhoods, to help them protect the local population, and to help ensure that the Iraqi forces left behind are capable of providing the security that Baghdad needs.

Many listening tonight will ask why this effort will succeed when previous operations to secure Baghdad did not. Well, here are the differences: In earlier operations, Iraqi and American forces cleared many neighborhoods of terrorists and insurgents, but when our forces moved on to other targets, the killers returned. This time, we'll have the force levels we need to hold the areas that have been cleared. In earlier operations, political and sectarian interference prevented Iraqi and American forces from going into neighborhoods that are home to those fueling the sectarian violence. This time, Iraqi and American forces will have a green light to enter those neighborhoods -- and Prime Minister Maliki has pledged that political or sectarian interference will not be tolerated.

I've made it clear to the Prime Minister and Iraq's other leaders that America's commitment is not open-ended. If the Iraqi government does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of the American people -- and it will lose the support of the Iraqi people. Now is the time to act. The Prime Minister understands this. Here is what he told his people just last week: "The Baghdad security plan will not provide a safe haven for any outlaws, regardless of [their] sectarian or political affiliation."

To read the full text of the Presidents address, visit our SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT section.

Press Secretary Tony Snow was asked yesterday, “how far does the President go into the issue of public opinion in weighing this out and in making this new way forward?” Snow replied, “As far as public opinion, the President will not shape policy according to public opinion, but he does understand that it's important to bring the public back to this war and restore public confidence and support for the mission.”

TMC NEWS would like to know how you feel, should the United States send addition troops into Iraq and do you feel confident with the Presidents new strategy? Those are our poll questions and as always we welcome your opinion as long as you sign your name to them.


Yvonne De Carlo, the actress who played Lily Munster from 1964 to 1966, has died at the age of 84 at the Motion Picture & Television facility in Los Angeles. De Carlo also played the wife of Moses in “The Ten Commandments”.


If you were one of the unfortunate drivers stuck on I-90 last night after the Ice & Snow blew through then you know how horrible the conditions were. Ice covered the highway as cars slide into other unlucky motorists while most just ended up in medians and ditches. Elyria Police Officers were dealing with a large number of non-injury accidents, in some cases just going on foot from one to the next. LifeCare Ambulance Paramedics and Elyria Firefighters responded and also checked the many accidents only finding one person that needed treatment. Conditions were so bad that the highway was shut down for a period of time while road crews plowed and dumped salt.

A crash on I-90 just west of Middle Ridge in Amherst Township sent two people to the hospital after their car rolled over. Another car went off the road on Middle Ridge Road just south of I-90 hitting a tree.

The National Weather Service is forecasting more snow this morning and clearing in the afternoon. The windy conditions should continue through the day and evening with winds blowing up to 20mph.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Local television pioneer Alice Weston has died at her Sheffield Lake home at the age of 95. Weston helped women break through a male dominated profession when she began her career some 60 years ago at WEWS in Cleveland. The station had only been on air for a year when Weston hosted three live cooking and craft shows a day.

Weston was born with a speech impediment, her father told her “Alice, you already have one challenge, don’t have a second. Don’t ever use notes.” She never did, in interviews or broadcasting. She won the 1964 McCall Magazine’s Golden Mike Award garnering her national attention. Weston finished out her broadcasting career on WUAB where she worked for 30 years reporting a variety of stories particularly stories highlighting Lorain County. Weston retired at the age of 86.

Weston has asked that a scholarship be started in her name at Lorain County Community College. Details about Weston’s funeral have not yet been released.


Robert Arida
Olmsted Firefighter and Paramedic Robert Arida is due in Lorain County Common Pleas Court tomorrow morning on charges of Gross Sexual Imposition and sexual battery. Arida is accused of having improper sexual contact with two girls, one of whom he gave alcohol to before sexually assaulting her. Arida was indicted for the crimes and turned himself into the Lorain County Sheriff’s Department on December 22nd and was released on $5,000.00 bond.

Arida who use to live in Elyria now resides in Eaton Township.Arida was arrested in October by Sheriff Deputies for Domestic Violence against his wife. Court records show that he is due to appear before Judge John Musson in Elyria Municipal Court tomorrow morning at 10:30.


A two-car accident today in Carlisle Township sent one to Elyria Memorial Hospital (EMH) with head injuries. The crash occurred in the intersection of Grafton Road & State Route 57. A car and mini van collided with the mini van ending up in a ditch and the driver needing medical attention. Carlisle Township, LifeCare Ambulance, Eaton Township and Central Lorain County Ambulance District responded to assist the victims. The driver and passenger of the first vehicle refused any treatment at the scene while Eaton Township Ambulance transported the driver of the mini van to EMH.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.

To see all photos: CLICK HERE

Monday, January 08, 2007


Well, just one week into the New Year and already we have to go into our “You’re An Idiot” file.

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning on Friday for Lorain County after a day of constant rainfall. Along with the warning was advice that most all media carried, TMC NEWS posted it and even presented it in big red capital letters.


Seems kind of like common sense would tell you this, but like with about every other heavy rainfall area Fire Departments were out rescuing people from their cars that got stuck in high water. Some areas the high water might sneak up on you so in those cases it can be understandable that cars would become stranded accidentally. If you attempted to drive down Ford Road from West River this weekend you certainly noticed the THREE sets of barricades with road closed signs stapled to them and the three additional road side signs warning of HIGH WATER / ROAD CLOSED. One driver apparently missed those warnings as they drove their car into the flood near the bridge on Ford Road.

Elyria Police received a call around 2am on Saturday morning from someone alerting them to the car stranded on Ford road due to the high water. The caller also said they were taking the driver to south Elyria. The Police on scene called for the Elyria Fire Department to respond to the scene to make sure nobody was still in the stranded vehicle.

TMC NEWS called the cell phone number that was found on the Police report to find out the circumstances around the incident but our calls were not returned.

Friday, January 05, 2007


The National Weather Service in Cleveland has issued a FLOOD WARNING for urban areas and small streams in Lorain, Erie, Huron, Medina and Cuyahoga Counties until 12:45am. The National Weather Service Doppler Radar and rain gages showed that up to 1.5 inches of rain fell between 2pm and 5pm across parts of the warning area. Additional rainfall amounts of up o an inch is possible across the region through 8pm as another round of rain moves across the area.

A FLOOD WARNING means that flooding is imminent or has been reported along streams, creeks, and rivers in the area. All interested parties should take necessary precautions immediately. To view NEWSNET 5 Weather radar in your county: CLICK HERE



A head on traffic crash on South Abbe near East Broad Street today sent two people to the hospital. Elyria Police were in the area at the time of the crash and began assisting the victims until LifeCare Paramedics and Elyria Firefighters arrived on scene to take over. The rain slick roads may have contributed to the crash one witness stated but was not sure what caused the two cars to collide.

Check back for more details as they become available. To see more photos: CLICK HERE

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today released scorecard assessments of interoperable communications capabilities in 75 urban and metropolitan areas nationwide. Interoperable communications involve policies, technology and training that enable law enforcement, fire and emergency medical services from multiple jurisdictions in a common community to effectively communicate within one hour of an incident.

“The 9/11 Commission identified interoperable communications as a major challenge and many communities listened by taking the sometimes difficult steps necessary to close communication gaps among first responders,” said Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. “Their experience proves that basic interoperability at the command level is achievable. We’re committed to making this a priority in every major urban area, and we’ll continue to push for closing these gaps by the end of 2008.”

The report listed Columbus in the top 6 with our neighbor Cleveland down there in the bottom 6.

TMC NEWS sat down with Lorain County Emergency Management Agency Director Tom Kelley to discuss the report and where Lorain County stands, communications wise, in the case of a disaster. Kelley, who is also the Lorain County Homeland Security Director, said that Lorain County has made communications a priority since before September 11. “We have always made communications a high priority but after September 11th with the money we have received we have really made great improvements.” The Department of Homeland Security distributes money to the state of Ohio then money is allocated to the various counties based on a formula including populations. Here is the breakdown of money that Lorain County has received since 2001.

2001 $61,610.61
2002 $167.905
2003 $186,100
2004 $1,027,243
2005 $636,367
2006 $209,398

The money received from Homeland Security can be used for the following 7 groups: Fire, Police, Health, EMS, Hospital, EMA and Public Works. A committee of 12, as required by the state of Ohio, meets to determine what the money will be used for. Kelley said one of the main reasons he thinks the process has worked so well in Lorain County is that at the first meeting the committee decided that each group would decide on an item or items for their overall group. “Instead of each Department saying we want this item or that item and fighting over the little things the different groups come back to the committee with items that will benefit the overall county.”

One of the items was the Lorain County Command and Communications truck. This vehicle, bought completely with Homeland Security funds, responds to large-scale incidents in Lorain County and acts as the command and communications center. One of the main features on this truck is where with a click of the mouse Kelley can link various radio frequencies together. “We can have all departments communicating on one radio channel at any given time. This includes departments from surrounding counties such as Huron, Erie, Ashland and Medina County. We are working with western Cuyahoga counties to get them on our system as well.”

With the money decreasing from the DHS Lorain County is now looking at hiring a communications consultant to come in and look at the county’s current system. “The idea is to see from an independent consultant how we could use the equipment and systems that we already have to make improvements.”

Kelley said that any community can buy the best communication equipment but if you don’t have cooperation from the various agencies it will never work. “We have been very fortunate where all of the agencies have worked very well together, even giving up portions of their money to other agencies who fall short on items that they are looking at buying. I think if it weren’t for the collaborative effort of all departments we would not be as far ahead in communications that we are today. So as far as communications is concerned, we're making it a priority, and have made great advances ensuring that we can all talk to each other during a crisis.”

To see more photos: CLICK HERE

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


No, this is not meant to be a subliminal message.

Traffic was tied up this morning on East Bridge Street near East River when a Pepsi Semi making a u-turn East Bridge broke down. Elyria Police directed traffic until the semi was towed away. Officials believe it was a busted air line that stopped the Pepsi truck this morning.
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