Saturday, July 31, 2010


Elyria – An Elyria woman had to be pulled up a hill by Firefighters after she suffered an injury inside of Cascade Park Saturday afternoon.

Assistant Chief Bob Dempsey of the Elyria Fire Department said that the 52 year old woman was hiking along the trails when she was hurt. “She said she just took a step and either twisted her foot on a rock or went into a hole and then just collapsed.”

A friend that was hiking with the woman went back up the trail to the back parking lot of the Elyria Police Department to get help. Officers notified LifeCare Ambulance who in turned requested the help from Firefighters.

As Dempsey surveyed the area where the woman was down he realized that to have Firefighters carry her back in the way she came would have been too dangerous. Firefighters at the top of the hill were instructed by Dempsey to move their operations to Forrest Street, between Parkview and Cascade Streets.

Firefighters first removed a panel of fencing and then began setting up a rope rescue operation. After LifeCare Paramedics secured the woman’s injured leg she was placed in a Stokes Basket and was then slowing hoisted up the hill.

A mixture of Firefighters and Paramedics pulled from the top of the hill while 4 Firefighters guided the basket with the woman to safety.

The woman, who Dempsey described as an avid hiker, was taken to Elyria Memorial Hospital for further evaluation.

Dempsey said that several factors played into Saturday’s operation running so smoothly. “Time was certainly on our side this afternoon. The victim was not critical or bleeding so we were ok there. The space we have here on top of the hill worked out well for us, we had no obstructions to deal with during the operation.”



Amherst – An afternoon fire in Amherst left a multi-car garage destroyed.

Amherst Firefighters responded to a fire on Spring Street near Cleveland Ave Friday afternoon and when they arrived they found a large garage fully involved in fire with thick black smoke filling the air. The smoke could be seen from as far away as downtown Elyria. Firefighters were able to knock down the fire and bring it under control in a short amount of time with the help of Firefighters from Elyria Township and South Amherst.

There were no injuries reported and the cause of the blaze is under investigation.
Top photo courtesy: Brandon Rivera


Elyria – Police responded to the T&A bar on Lake Ave in Elyria around bar closing time Friday night after receiving calls of a man with a shotgun in the parking lot. As Police were responding they were told that several shots had rang out in the lot and that suspects were fleeing in a white pickup truck on Adams.

A truck matching that description was spotted at Lorain Blvd turning onto Lake Ave and was pulled over immediately by Officers responding to the call.

Three males were detained while Officers checked the vehicle for guns. Although the men all said they were at the bar when the shots rang out they said they were unable to identify the man with the gun.

All three men were cleared and released by Officers.

There were no injuries and the Police are investigating the incident.



Elyria – Elyria Police responded to a home in the 400 block of 12th Street Friday afternoon after a caller said someone was breaking into their home.

While responding Officers were told that someone might be trying to get in through the back door of the home. Then as Officers were arriving they were told that it was actually a tree that fell in the back yard of this home and that someone was trapped underneath.

After checking Officers found that a couple large limbs did in fact snap and fall, striking the house, but nobody was trapped or injured.

Elyria Firefighters checked the home and found no structural damage.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010


The National Weather Service in Cleveland has issued a SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING – The warning will remain in effect until 7:00 p.m.

At 6:02 p.m. the National Weather Service Doppler Radar indicated a line of SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS capable of producing damaging winds in excess of 60 MPH. These storms were located along a line extending from 7 miles north of Cleveland to Avon Lake and moving southeast at 55 MPH.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Elyria – A city of Elyria employee spotted a truck fire early Tuesday morning and called the Police. The truck was located on the access road along the tracks between South Abbe & Olive Street.

When Officers arrived the truck was fully involved. The witness was able to obtain a plate number before Officers arrived.

When Firefighters arrived they pulled an Engine up behind the truck and attempted to extinguish the blaze but this was a stubborn one. Once they thought the fire was out it sparked up again. After another blast of water Firefighters Police inspected the interior and found no body inside. Officers did locate markings on the truck door identifying the vehicle as 4011 from North Royalton.

The truck was then released to Mugs Elyria Auto Service and was taken to their yard.

Police then received a call from Gelco Corporation on Garden Street reporting the truck stolen. According to the owner the initial value of the truck was $15,000.00.

Firefighters were later called to Mugs after the truck caught fire again. It was quickly extinguished and didn’t spark up again.

The Elyria Police Department is investigating the theft and arson.


Monday, July 26, 2010


Elyria – A Marco’s Pizza delivery man was robbed late Sunday night by two men – one with a shotgun.

Delivery driver Cameron Massen told Police that he had just finished delivering a pizza on Lake Ave when he went to 915 Foster Ave. Massen said when he pulled up to the house he noticed that windows and doors were boarded up and appeared vacant. Massen felt that something was wrong so he turned to leave when a black male wearing a white hooded sweatshirt with a yellow and blue paint splatter design appeared and punched him in the face. Massen said it was then that another black male appeared from the rear of 915 Foster – stood in front of his vehicle and pointed / cocked a shoulder mounted firearm (possibly a shotgun)at him while he sat in the car.

Massen told Police that he recognized the man with the shotgun as Anthony Dukes Jr. Dukes ordered Massen out of the car and demanded his money. Massen handed over money from one pocket and the unknown male reached in another and removed additional cash. Massen said drivers usually split money for situations like this. In total about $170.00, a cell phone and the two X-LG pizzas were taken during the robbery.

After taking the money both men disappeared into the darkness behind 915 Foster Ave. and Massen, without a cell phone, returned to Marco’s on West Ridge Road to inform his manager that he had been robbed.

Police showed a Massen a driver’s license photo of Dukes and he made a positive identification saying he was the man holding the shotgun.

Police learned that when the order was placed for the pizzas the caller ID was blocked and the caller asked that the pizzas be delivered to the back door of the residence. Police called the number that was left with the order and a male answered but when the Officer tried to identify him he hung up the phone. A call back went right to voice mail that had not yet been set up.

Police have certified Anthony Dukes Jr. to the Lorain County Juvenile Court for Aggravated Robbery (F1). The identification of the second man is still unknown.
Monday afternoon the father of the delivery man went to 915 Foster Ave to check the area and discovered a shotgun under a back porch. Police were called and took the shotgun and other items as evidence.

Anyone with any information about the robbery is asked to call the Elyria Police Department at 440.323.3302.


Friday, July 23, 2010


COLUMBUS – According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS) crash statistics, current and preliminary totals revealed that this year, 566 lives have been lost on Ohio roadways in comparison to 499 in 2009 during the time frame showing a 12 percent increase in rural and urban fatal crashes.

The Patrol created their strategic goal known as the 24/7 Initiative in 2007 as a new way to measure success in traffic safety. The initiative’s goal is a 10 percent traffic fatality reduction in Ohio by 2011. The 24/7 Initiative provides a holistic view of the efforts, challenges, and accomplishments of the Division for every hour of every day. Colonel David Dicken, Patrol superintendent, said, “Although we’ve experienced great strides over the past several years in our 24/7 Initiative aimed at reducing fatal crashes, I am alarmed at the recent increase.” “Troopers are going to need to be vigilant at removing impaired drivers and attempting to reduce potential crashes over the next several months if we are going to meet our goal,” Dicken added.

The goal of the 24/7 Initiative is to reduce serious traffic crashes and apprehend the criminal element through high-visibility, aggressive traffic enforcement and increased public awareness through the use of the media. The “24/7” moniker lets our people and the public know that we are always working to be the best we can be – 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

The Patrol continues to partner with local law enforcement agencies and safety advocate groups in this effort in a facet of programs including sobriety checkpoints, mock teen crashes, education speech details and strict enforcement. Post commanders evaluate local traffic trends and develop plans to specifically target identified areas.

The Patrol is asking for public participation in this effort and reminding motorists to do their part by driving the posted speed limit, wearing safety belts and not drinking and driving.


Elyria – Neighbors surrounding 875 North West River Road were evacuated by Firefighters early Friday morning after a gas line was snapped during a crash and gas filled a home.

Police say that 21 year old Justin Willis of Elyria was traveling south on West River when he lost control of his car and went off the left side of the road. Willis’ car first struck and snapped a small tree, then went through a chain link fence, a small peach tree, a wooden fence and then the corner the house. When the car hit the house it snapped a gas line, took out a basement window and moved some concrete blocks.

The snapped line began pouring gas into the home filling it to levels that Fire officials say were beyond explosive. With that Firefighters began knocking on doors to evacuate neighbors. About a dozen people quickly woke up the kids and moved down the street and watched as the scene unfolded.

Willis’ passenger was treated on scene and transported to Elyria Memorial Hospital with a broken arm and other injuries.

Willis said that while traveling north on West River he saw a man on a bike pull in front of him causing him to swerve. “I first went off the right side of the road a little bit then when I got back on the road the car was already going sideways.” The ride then through the yards was all done sideways with the passenger side taking all the hits. Willis said he believes he was traveling at about 40 MPH at the time of the crash.

Police said several Officers came from different directions but did not see anyone on a bicycle.

Willis was charged with Reasonable Control.



The National Weather Service in Cleveland has issued a HEAT ADVISORY which is in effect until 8 p.m. Friday evening.

Temperatures across the region will reach into the lower to middle 90’s. This combined with a very humid airmass will lead to heat index values in the 100 to 104 degree range.

Persons in the ADVISORY area are advised to avoid prolonged work in the sun or in poorly ventilated areas. Drink plenty of liquids and try to stay in an air conditioned environment.


Elyria – An Elyria man said that he swerved to miss a male on a bike that cut in front of him on West River Road North early Friday morning. The driver went off the road and took out a couple trees and fences before slamming into a home.

Check back later today for complete details and PHOTO GALLERY

Thursday, July 22, 2010


The National Weather Service in Cleveland has issued a TORNADO WATCH for all of Lorain County until midnight tonight.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


North Ridgeville – HAZMAT Specialists from throughout Lorain County are currently on the Ohio Turnpike – Exit 9 exit ramp – dealing with an incident.

A semi crashed into a guardrail just after 8 p.m. Monday night spilling fuel on the roadway and in a small field.

North Ridgeville Fire Department Paramedics treated the driver and transported him to the hospital. His condition is unknown at this hour.

Check back later for more details.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Elyria – An Elyria man told Police that he swerved to miss a couple of kids that were in the roadway on Taylor Street early Monday morning then rolled his car.

Police say that 30 year old William Solomon of Elyria was traveling east on Taylor Street when he went off the right side of the road near Fairlawn. The car went up some guide wires attached to an Ohio Edison pole then rolled over onto its roof.

When Police arrived Solomon was not at the scene. He was later found walking on Winkles Street a short distance away from the crash site. He told the Officer that he swerved to miss hitting some kids that ran out in front of him.

Solomon was charged with Reasonable Control.



Elyria – Police questioned the idea of the Toy Box Night Club locking their back door while they were still open late Saturday night. While in patrol of the downtown bars, Officers noticed that the back door to the bar had been locked. Officers spoke with the management and then contacted Elyria Fire Department to get their opinion on the issue.

Captain Bob Donofrio of the Elyria Fire Department responded and witnessed the locked door with the Police. He did not cite the bar Saturday night but Police said he was going to turn the matter over to the Fire Prevention Division for follow up.


Elyria – A 12 year old Elyria boy was injured Sunday afternoon when he rode his bike into the front of a Dodge Ram pickup truck.

Police say that the 12 year old was riding his bike down the hill heading towards the Ford crossing when he saw the navy blue Dodge Ram rounding the corner. The bike had no brakes so the boy was unable to stop and rode into the front driver’s side fender / tire area.

Even though the boy was at fault, the driver of the Dodge Ram left the scene after the crash.

LifeCare Paramedics treated the boy at the scene for arm injuries and transported him to Elyria Memorial Hospital for further evaluation.

The boy was charged with Reasonable Control / Bicycle.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


The Brian Woods Photo gallery has been posted. See the entire gallery here and then jump over to our Facebook page and TAG yourself or your friends in the gallery there.


Saturday, July 17, 2010


Lorain – An OVI Checkpoint Friday night in Lorain pulled 5 impaired drivers off the roadways.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol, in conjunction with the Lorain Police Department, held the checkpoint from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday night on 28th Street, east of Fulton Road.

The OVI checkpoint, funded by federal grant funds, was planned to deter and intercept impaired drivers.

The checkpoint was also held in conjunction with nearby saturation patrols to aggressively combat alcohol-related injury and fatal crashes.

“Based on provisional data, there were 338 OVI-related fatal crashes in which 370 people were killed last year in Ohio,” Lt. Travis Hughes, Commander of the Lorain Post, said. “State troopers made 24,245 OVI arrests last year in combating these dangerous drivers. OVI checkpoints are designed to not only deter impaired driving, but to proactively remove these dangerous drivers from our roadways.”

Friday night’s checkpoint worked like this: Vehicles traveling on East 28th Street (east or westbound) were able to see the checkpoint set up. In accordance to the law, drivers were able to get around the checkpoint by turning down either Fulton Road or Wood Street. Those drivers that went through the checkpoint were greeted by either a Lorain Police Officer or State Trooper. They would identify themselves and explain the checkpoint.

The driver would then be asked to present a valid driver’s license and were asked if they had been drinking. If the driver had a valid license and were not impaired they were allowed to pass.

Drivers without a valid license or those suspected of being impaired were asked to pull into a designated area to be check. Drivers who just didn’t have their license on them were detained while a check was run through a computer. Once they determined that the driver was valid they were allowed to pass.

In total 416 vehicles passed through the checkpoint with 33 of them being diverted. Out of the 33, 5 were cited for OVI and 2 were cited for Driving Under Suspension. One driver cited for OVI was deemed an illegal alien. The Border Patrol was notified about him and his 5 passengers.

As the cones were being picked up Lt. Hughes said he felt the evening was a success. “We removed 5 impaired drivers from the roadways so that is very good.”

Hughes said that the selection of Checkpoint locations is not a random thing – no throwing darts at a Lorain County map to decide where one will take place. “Through our crash records, where a lot of OVI arrests are made and where a lot of OVI crashes occur – we look at the whole picture and where we see a cluster, it pops right out. The locations we choose are certainly not just random, we do a lot of research because we when we do it we want to get it right.”

Some people have said they believe the checkpoints are nothing but a trap to make money. Hughes strongly rejects that misconception. “My biggest contention is that is it not about money, rather it is all about safety. Our driving force is the crashes that have happened. The injury crashes – the Fatal crashes. The last thing that we want to do as Troopers is to make a death notification to relatives as a result of an alcohol related crash. We have found that these work very well to deter this. So money is not a motivating factor at all, it’s about safety. It has been proven that alcohol enforcement, OVI enforcement will decrease the fatal and injury related crashes.”

Hughes also praised the Lorain Police Departments commitment to removing impaired drivers from their roadways. “They contacted us and asked to work together in this effort. Their turnout of Officers tonight and their work here has been great.”


Friday, July 16, 2010


Elyria – The Lorain County Chapter of the American Red Cross had to find temporary homes for 16 people Friday night after a fire ripped through an apartment in Elyria.

Assistant Chief Ron Brlas of the Elyria Fire Department said that he and a Firefighter had moved an Engine to Fire Station #4 on North Abbe Road Friday afternoon. “The Engine had been out of service for repairs and when it was completed we ran it over to the Station. About 15 to 20 minutes later we received an alarm for a possible fire in the apartments at 601 North Abbe – right next door to Station 4.”

Brlas said that as he was traveling along Route 57 he could see heavy smoke filling the sky. “When I pulled up I saw heavy fire and smoke coming from both the front and rear of the structure. After everything settled down I thought that Chad and I had just been here and didn’t see anything.”

The fire apartment, B-9, was occupied by Greg Miller, his girlfriend, their 4 year old daughter and Randy Hubbard. Hubbard told Brlas that he had left the apartment to go shopping up the street just before the fire. “When I was coming home I could see the smoke and at first I thought maybe it was the church,” said Hubbard. “Then when I got home I saw the awning on fire and the entire apartment was on fire.”

Hubbard and Miller said they believed the fire started because of poor wiring in the air conditioner located below the front window.

Brlas said that Investigators believe the fire did start in the first floor living room but the exact cause is still under investigation.

“The fire was so intense that the stairway going up to the second floor had already burned,” said Brlas. “One of our Captains actually fell through the staircase as he was making his way to the second floor. He was ok and was able to get back up quickly and go back to attacking the fire.”

With this apartment building being as old as it is there were no fire walls between apartments to stop the blaze. Brlas said a couple things played a roll in stopping the fire from spreading. “At first I had the first crew going in with an inch & ¾ - but then with the amount of fire in there I had them go in with a 2” line so they could dump more water on it right away. Another crew went down 2 apartments to pull the ceilings down so we could see how far the fire had already spread and to stop it there if it was moving that way. Also, we received mutual aid from Sheffield Village and Avon and they both arrived quickly. The crew from Sheffield got up on the roof and cut some much needed ventilation holes – they all did a great job.”

With temperatures in the 90’s Brlas also praised the work of LifeCare Paramedics who were on scene assisting Firefighters in their rehab. “They were constantly checking the guys to make sure they ok to go back in if needed and weren’t afraid to say they had to stay out for a few more minutes. They also made sure the guys were getting plenty of water and O’2. They were a huge help to the guys today.”

The fire apartment is a total loss according to Brlas. The apartment to the right, B-10 suffered minor fire damage but heavy smoke and water damage. Four other apartments suffered smoke and water damage.


Elyria – Two men were shot outside of the west end bars on Broad Street just after 2 a.m. – witnesses say they saw multiple people with guns shooting.

One Elyria Officer was driving past the bars when he heard the shots ring out. The Officer pulled over in front of Moss’ to advise other Officers and to wait for backup. The Officer stated that he observed large amounts of unknown subjects running from the area in multiple directions. There were also numerous vehicles fleeing the area at high rates of speed in several directions. Two white males drove past the Officer and advised that a red SUV was traveling down Tremont towards Kerstetter Way, and the occupants had been shooting.

This vehicle was stopped by the driveway of EPD and found that the four occupants were not involved in the shooting.

Officers then went to the area where the shooting took place to check for victims or signs of evidence. Officers observed a black male, later identified as Marquise Hollis near the open driver front door of a vehicle parked in front of Toy Box on Broad. Hollis looked at Officers then entered the vehicle and began reaching between the center console and driver seat. This caused concern for Officers due to the nature of the call. Officer Figula Jr. and Sergeant Mayne took control of the male who was identified as Hollis and found to have a warrant through Sandusky Police Department. Hollis checked clear of any weapons and was highly intoxicated and taken into custody once the warrant was confirmed.

Hollis advised Officers that he observed unknown males shooting at the Toy Box. Officer Figula Jr. pounded on the door to Toy Box for several minutes before finally being allowed in the locked door. The staff had swept and washed the floor and cleaned the bathroom down. The staff claimed to have no knowledge of a shooting.

While responding to the call, an Officer spotted a red pickup truck heading eastbound on Broad St towards EMH from the area of McDonalds, occupied by 3 black males. Officers stopped the vehicle on Broad St at Cedar. The passenger in the right seat opened the door and advised that he had been shot in the leg and needed to get to the hospital.

Officer Hudzinski advised them to continue to the hospital and officers would meet them there. As the truck took off towards EMH, another car pulled up with two witnesses who stated that the three men in the truck had a handgun.

Officers responded to EMH and arrived at the same time as the pickup truck.
The gunshot victim, later identified as Robert D. Beane III, went inside the emergency room to be treated. Officer Ligas identified the driver of the truck as Kereem L. Tucker. A check of Tucker revealed him to be under a 12-point suspension. Officers had Tucker step from the vehicle where he was patted down for weapons. While Tucker was getting out of the vehicle, Officer Ligas observed a clear plastic cigarette cellophane containing what appeared to be crack cocaine on the floorboard of the truck where Tucker just exited. Tucker was placed under arrest and transported to the police station.

Officer Hudzinski had the center passenger step from the vehicle and identified him as Matthew J. Bell. During a pat down for weapons, Hudzinski located a handgun in the on him. Bell was placed under arrest and transported to the police department.

Officer Ligas then made contact with the victim. Beane stated that he was trying to leave the area of the west end bars/McDonalds with his girlfriend because people were starting to fight. Beane stated that he felt a rush of wind on his legs and realized he had been shot when he felt blood running down his leg. Beane stated that he got into his friend’s truck and left for the hospital. Beane stated that he does not know who shot him or see anyone with a gun.

Tucker was charged with Possession of Crack Cocaine (ORC 2925.11C4 F5) and DUS (ORC 4510.16A M1). Bell was charged with Carrying a Concealed Weapon (ORC 2923.12 F4).

Just after 3 a.m. Officers responded to Community Health Partners Emergency Room after receiving a call that they were treating a gunshot victim from Elyria.

Officers made contact with the 17yr. old male who advised the following, He was standing on the sidewalk outside Toy Box Bar talking with some friends. He stated that he heard approximately 3 gunshots outside the bar and he began to run from the area. He observed his left knee to be bleeding and realized he had been grazed by a bullet. He initially advised that he did not see anyone with a gun and had no description of a suspect or gun. He later advised that he observed a B/M approx. 5’9, thin build, wearing a white button-up shirt with lime green lines, and matching shorts, pulled out a gun after an argument with several other subjects. He advised that several other Black male subjects also pulled out guns and was unsure which one shot him. He advised that he could possibly identify the subject that originally displayed a gun. He stated that he began running toward McDonald’s after the gunshots and received a ride from a friend (only known as Demerise) and left the area. He was unable to provide a description of any other subjects that displayed guns.

If anyone has information about this shooting they are asked to contact the Elyria Police Department at 440.323.3302.


Elyria – While Elyria Police were still dealing with the shooting on Broad Street they received calls of 5 gunshots in the area of Westway Gardens off Infirmary Road.

When Officers arrived they spotted a black male running on Melvyn Lane towards Infirmary Road.

Other Officers were traveling on Allen Street towards Infirmary Road behind an unknown vehicle.

Officers observed an unknown short black male walking Eastbound on Infirmary on the South side of the roadway. The male was wearing a white t-shirt and black jeans and was sweating profusely, while looking nervously towards Officers. Officers believed the male had been involved in the shooting.

The male crossed the street and was approximately 100 feet in front of Officers. Officer Figula Jr. yelled for the male to stop. The male turned back, then ran into the backyards between 700 block of Infirmary Road and the 1000 block of Melvyn. The male was reaching into his waistband, grabbing at something, while looking back at Officers. Officers Figula Jr. and Widmer drove into the backyards. The male continued while Officers drove after him. The male kept reaching into his waistband. The male cut up towards Infirmary. Officer Widmer drove around and Officer Figula Jr. exited the vehicle. Officers lost sight of the male.

Officers went into the 1000 block of Melvyn and observed an unknown black male entering a vehicle in a driveway across from Officers. This vehicle backed out of the drive. Officers Widmer and Figula Jr. were to the East and Officers Straub and Constantino were to the West. The vehicle quickly backed from the driveway and began traveling towards Straub and Constantino at a high rate of speed. Officers were yelling for the vehicle to stop.

The vehicle accelerated at a high rate of speed at Officers causing them to have to jump out of the way to avoid being struck. The vehicle then disappeared from sight as Officers ran back towards their Police vehicles.

The vehicle was not located. Officers were unable to locate any items the male may have discarded. Officers also located no shooting victims or any other further information.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Elyria – Seven men were arrested late Wednesday night after a large fight broke out on Pratt Blvd. in Wilkes Villa.

Two Officers were at the Police Sub Station in Wilkes when the call went out. As the Officers went to check on the situation they could hear gunshots coming from a large crowd on Pratt. According to Police one of the Officers spotted 27 year old Paul J. Smith of Lorain with his arm extended in a north western direction. The Officer reported seeing flashes coming from the ends of his hands and heard several more gunshots. The crowd began running along with Smith who Police lost in the chaos.

During a search of the area Police found Aaron Jackson and other males in the grass area behind Pratt Blvd. Jackson had dirt and rocks all over his body and his jaw was swollen. Jackson said that someone hit him with something but he did not see who struck him. Jackson was transported by LifeCare Ambulance to Elyria Memorial.

A Lorain County Sheriff’s Deputy located a silver 9MM semi-automatic handgun in the grass behind 154 Pratt Blvd.

Officers and Deputies then went to 166 Bohannon Court, Paul Smith’s residence. After searching the apartment Police found 10 people inside but no Smith.

An eye witness to the incident told Police that Paul Smith was the shooter and that he and the other suspects were hiding in his daughter’s apartment at 145 Bohannon Court.

Officers went to the apartment and knocked on the door with no response. Officers then began pounding and kicking the door – yelling inside for anyone inside to come out of the apartment. With no response Officers then yelled that they would go to the office and get a key to the apartment. Just then the front door opened and Smith’s daughter exited the apartment. She told Officers “They’re all in there.”

Once Smith’s daughter gave Officers consent to enter and search the apartment they had a Sheriff’s Department K9 Officer go to the door and order the men to exit or the dog would enter. As the K9 was barking Officers could hear men yelling from inside that they were coming out.

Police arrested 34 year old Chemon Perkin of Bedford, Ohio, 28 year old James Cawthorn of Cleveland, 39 year old Alex McKeller of Oakwood, Ohio, 33 year old Dorian Jackson of Elyria and 18 year old Derik Horton of Elyria – all charged with Obstructing Official Business.

Paul J. Smith was charged with Inducing Panic, Obstructing Official Business and Discharging a Firearm on Prohibited Premises.

Juan Wyley was arrested on a warrant from an outside agency.

Witnesses told Officers that the incident began when Claudette Jackson, Amanda Jackson, Orien Jackson, Aaron Jackson and Paul Smith approached a group at 169 Pratt Blvd looking for a fight. The witness said that Amanda and Aaron’s father Abdullah Al-Jeleel began yelling “Who the fuck is Rico?” Ricardo Johnson stood up and announced himself and the two men then squared off. Aaron Jackson swung on Johnson but missed. A large fight then broke out in the street. The witness said she then heard gunshots and looked in the street and saw Paul Smith, under a street light, shooting what appeared to be a 9MM handgun. The witness said that another man was next to Smith and was also shooting but she could not identify him. She stated that Smith was shooting into the crowd while the other man was shooting into the air. The witness said she also saw one man grab his stomach and run but did not know where he went or if he had actually been shot.

Police advised all of the men they are not allowed on LMHA property and are being placed on the Criminal Trespass list due to their involvement in this incident. Police also said that there were no known gunshot victims at this time.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


A white male walked into the First Merit on Cleveland Ave in Amherst Wednesday afternoon and robbed the bank.

Police say the man entered the bank just before 3:40 p.m. and handed a teller a note. After reading the note, the teller complied with the request of the note, giving the suspect an undisclosed amount of currency.

The suspect left the bank and ran in a northerly direction, across Cleveland Ave and toward the Olde Towne Pizza Shop.

The scene was processed for evidence by Amherst Police and FBI Agents.

Police say the suspect is described as a 40 year old white male, approximately 6’2”, thin to medium build with dark hair and a mustache with a goatee. The suspect was wearing a baseball style cap with logo on cap, dark in color long sleeve T-Shirt with writing on chest and sleeves, possibly dark in color athletic-style pants with white stripe going down legs (possibly described as “swishy” pants)

Police are not releasing any additional information about the robbery at this time.

Anyone who may have seen the male in the area at the time or any who has any additional information on the identity of the suspect are urged to contact the Amherst Police Department Detective Bureau at 440-988-4422, or the FBI SA Joseph Oliver, of the Elyria Office, at 440-240-5504.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


The James Kerstetter Memorial 5K Run / Walk drew nearly 400 runners and walkers last Saturday morning as friends and family of Jim Kerstetter continue to honor the fallen Officer.

Organizers say that they were overwhelmed by the number of people who participated in the first annual event. The 5K started on the newly dedicated Kerstetter Way, behind the Elyria Police Station, then went through town, down Washington Ave and through Ely Wood Park before heading back to the finish line on Kerstetter Way.

First to break the “Police Line Do Not Cross” tape, aka the finish line, was 17 year old Tyler Kvach of Avon.

Below is the complete list of winners in the various age groups. If you were part of the event jump over to our Facebook page and TAG yourself or one of your friends in our photo gallery.


Note: The BRIAN WOODS Photo Gallery will be posted shortly

Top 5 Men 1. Tyler Kvach 16.39 2. Kirk Stellhouse 3. Bryce Steinal 4. Patrick Foreman 5. Ryan Mandoke Top 5 Women 1. Alexa Rick 19.37 2. Lauren Hutka 3. Athena 4. Grace Dill 5. Megan Willinski
Males 10 -13 1. Jake Chizmar 2. Mackie Eichenlaub Male 14-18 1. Matt Wiehe 2. Keith Novarese 3. Evan Foreman Male 19-24 1. David Heady 2. Jeff Tottier 3. Corey Loesch Male 25-29 1. Mike Foreman 2. Ken Schuster 3. Matthew Van Wormer Male 30-34 1. Phil Roby 2. Tim Thompson 3. Wayne Need Male 35-39 1. Randy Osborne 2. Sam Lambert 3. Calvin Cross Male 40-44 1. Brad Perkins 2. Eric Glover 3. Irving Soto Male 45-49 1. Pete Mycek 2. Tom Concheck 3. Adam Rick Male 50-54 1. Kurt Roth 2. Joe Gensert 3. Jim Taylor Male 55-59 1. Ron Brushaber 2. John Phillips 3. Bert Fitacel Male 60-64 1. Chris Nichols 2. Bob Lloyd Male 65 and up 1. Angel Rivera 2. Luis Bonilla 3. Tehi Ilin

Female 9 and under 1. Hannah Schramm Female 10-13 1. Jess Beran 2. Abbey Smith 3. Taylor O'Dell Female 14-18 1. Abbie O'Dell 2. Hailey Dziak 3. Bre Benjamin Female 19-24 1. Ashley Belzer 2. Amanda Coler 3. Catherine Pavell Female 25-29 1. Stephanie Gath 2. Jenine Jones 3. Maria Whithy Female 30-34 1. Joellen Mitchell 2. Laura Roby 3. Laura Cozart Female 35-39 1. Jodi Higgins 2. Erin Samide 3. Angela Minnillo Female 40-44 1. Coleen Hales 2. Darlene Spishak 3. Laurie Stechow Female 45-49 1. Dianne Niman 2. Tammie Gerding 3. Mary Jo Dziak Female 55-59 1. Judy Johnson 2. Bridget Brushaber 3. Wendy Willis Female 60-64 1. Kathleen Secrist Female 65 and older 1. Frances Kennedy

Sunday, July 11, 2010


The band, “all things new” from Amherst’s Great Lakes Church performed Saturday afternoon at the Amherst Jamboree.

The Jamboree ends Sunday evening.


Friday, July 09, 2010


Elyria – Family and friends of fallen Elyria Police Officer Jim Kerstetter gathered today at the East Falls Observation area to be on hand as Elyria Mayor Bill Grace and Elyria Police Chief Duane Whitely removed the blue draping that covered the KERSTETTER WAY street sign.

Just before removing the draping Mayor Grace presented Kerstetter’s family several replicas of the sign that they could take home. Grace said he knew the family would each want one for their homes so instead of them shimmying up one of the poles to snag one in the middle of the night – he thought it was best to just give them their own today.

Last night many people throughout Northeast Ohio said they had their hearts ripped out by a self-absorbed basketball player. Some grown men were even on TV crying because of this guy’s decision. Today’s dedication ceremony should be a sobering reminder to everyone that there are far greater problems in the world and in our own back yards to worry about. Today’s dedication ceremony should also be a reminder that there are far greater people who deserve to be called Hero – then any basketball player.


Summer Is “Trauma Season”

Columbus – The Ohio Division of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is encouraging parents and caregivers to take extra precaution this summer while children are participating in summer activities. In Ohio, there were 20,578 children ages 0-15 years transported by EMS during Trauma Season in 2009. 7,490, or 36 percent, of those were transported due to an injury. A total of 2,557 kids were admitted to hospitals for longer than 48 hours for treatment of injuries.

“We want everyone to have a safe and fun summer, and that starts by always putting safety first, whether it’s by buckling your seat belt or making sure children are out of harm’s way at the playground or at home in the backyard,” said Ohio Department of Public Safety Director Thomas Stickrath.

Injuries tend to peak during the summer months (May-August) for children ages 14 and younger. Nationally this summer nearly three million children will be rushed to emergency rooms for serious injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes, drowning, bike crashes, pedestrian incidents, falls and other hazards.

“EMS personnel are prepared for Trauma Season. However, parents and caregivers can prevent many summer-related injuries with safety gear, proper education and parental supervision,” said Division of EMS Executive Director Richard Rucker. “By teaching children early on about good safety habits, they may be able to avoid future visits to the emergency room.”

The EMS Division encourages parents and caregivers to focus on different aspects of safety during Trauma Season and share topics such as lawnmower safety, swimming safety, and pedestrian safety with their children. The Division is offering these overall tips as a guide to avoiding some of the more common injuries:

Ride Safe
Secure children in the appropriate child safety seat or seat belt for their age and size. Kids should always be secured in the back seat.
Swim Safe
Always supervise young children near water and insist children wear personal flotation devices when on boats, near open bodies of water or participating in water sports.
Wheel Safe
Make sure kids wear properly fitting protective gear every time they ride their bikes, scooters, inline skates or skateboards. Teach children the rules of the road.
Walk Safe
Never let a child under age 10 cross the street alone. Teach children to obey traffic rules. Make sure kids wear retro-reflective materials, and don’t let them walk alone at night. If they must walk at dawn or at dusk, make sure they carry a flashlight.
Play Safe
Always supervise children at playgrounds or in the backyard. Make sure they play on a safe surface, such as mulch, rubber or fine sand.


Wishing a Happy Birthday to our friend
Jim Kerstetter – 177

This afternoon North Street in Elyria will be renamed and dedicated to the memory of Jim Kerstetter. The dedication of KERSTETTER WAY will begin at 2:00 p.m. at the East Falls Observation area behind the Elyria Police Station.


Dear Cleveland, All Of Northeast Ohio and Cleveland Cavaliers Supporters Wherever You May Be Tonight;

As you now know, our former hero, who grew up in the very region that he deserted this evening, is no longer a Cleveland Cavalier.

This was announced with a several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his "decision" unlike anything ever "witnessed" in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.

Clearly, this is bitterly disappointing to all of us.

The good news is that the ownership team and the rest of the hard-working, loyal, and driven staff over here at your hometown Cavaliers have not betrayed you nor NEVER will betray you.

There is so much more to tell you about the events of the recent past and our more than exciting future. Over the next several days and weeks, we will be communicating much of that to you.

You simply don't deserve this kind of cowardly betrayal.

You have given so much and deserve so much more.

In the meantime, I want to make one statement to you tonight:


You can take it to the bank.

If you thought we were motivated before tonight to bring the hardware to Cleveland, I can tell you that this shameful display of selfishness and betrayal by one of our very own has shifted our "motivation" to previously unknown and previously never experienced levels.

Some people think they should go to heaven but NOT have to die to get there.

Sorry, but that's simply not how it works.

This shocking act of disloyalty from our home grown "chosen one" sends the exact opposite lesson of what we would want our children to learn. And "who" we would want them to grow-up to become.

But the good news is that this heartless and callous action can only serve as the antidote to the so-called "curse" on Cleveland, Ohio.

The self-declared former "King" will be taking the "curse" with him down south. And until he does "right" by Cleveland and Ohio, James (and the town where he plays) will unfortunately own this dreaded spell and bad karma.

Just watch.

Sleep well, Cleveland.

Tomorrow is a new and much brighter day....

I PROMISE you that our energy, focus, capital, knowledge and experience will be directed at one thing and one thing only:

DELIVERING YOU the championship you have long deserved and is long overdue....

Dan Gilbert
Majority Owner
Cleveland Cavaliers

Thursday, July 08, 2010


Authorities have located 7 year old Zane Bedinger, the subject of a nationwide Amber Alert, safe and sound in Indiana. The

Police say that the suspect in the abduction, 50 year old Jeff Bedinger, shot and killed his 22 year old step-son before grabbing Zane and fleeing. Jeff Bedinger is still at large.

Bedinger is 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds. Police believe he fled the scene in a silver 2007 Honda Accord with Ohio license plate EDT 6246. If you see them, call 911. The suspect is considered armed with a 9 mm and dangerous.




The State of Ohio issued the Amber Alert Thursday afternoon (07-08) after the boy was reportedly abducted by the suspect in Troy. The suspect is wanted in conjunction with a homicide and is considered armed and dangerous. The suspect and the boy were last seen around midnight Wednesday (07-07).

Zane Bedinger, a White male, 7 years old, 4', 65 pounds with brown eyes and brown or strawberry hair. He was last seen wearing gray swimming trunks with black flowers and flip flops.

The suspect is Jeff Bedinger, a White male 50 years old, 6 feet 3 inches tall, 235 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.

The suspect vehicle is a 2007 silver Honda Accord, four-door with Ohio tag number EDT 6246.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Ohio State Police at 1-877-262-3764 or dial 911.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010


Elyria – A trip home from a fun and relaxing day at Cedar Point turned ugly late Tuesday night after a woman was shot in the head with a pellet gun.

Carol Mack of Elyria said she was driving south on Lake Ave when she heard a couple “pop” noises. “At first I thought maybe I ran something over on the road then I heard them again and I looked over at my Mother in the passenger seat and she yelled and was holding her face.”

Mack stopped and pulled into the Shopway parking lot at Lake & Furnace Street to see what happened to her Mother. When Mack saw the blood she quickly called 9-1-1.

LifeCare Paramedics treated the victim at the scene and then transported her to Elyria Memorial Hospital for further treatment.

Mack told Police she saw two young males in the area run after her Mother was hit. Police questioned two juveniles in the area and searched around their home. The two youths were taken to the Police station for further questioning.



Elyria – Two men entered the Smokers Outlet store on Cleveland Street Saturday afternoon and robbed them of over $2,000.00.

The store clerk told Officers that he was working in the store around 3:20 p.m. stocking shelves and speaking with a customer when the two men entered the store. The clerk said he was knelt down with his back to the door at the time. He said two black males, wearing all black or dark blue clothing with bandanas over their faces, entered and one pointed a black revolver at him and yelled, “Get your fat ass up and give me the money or I’ll shoot you!”

The clerk got up and went to the cash register, emptied it and then also offered up the “overflow cash” that was stored in a cigar box behind the counter. The suspect with the gun then opened the Ohio Lottery register on his own and removed an unknown amount of cash. At this time the clerk ran away from the gunmen toward the backroom and locked himself inside. The two gunmen pointed their guns at the customer as they left the store.

Two witnesses outside said the men ran west toward Hawthorne Street. The two men got into a maroon colored Ford Escape and drove north on Hawthorne.

Nobody was injured during the robbery but Police say that the clerk was very shaken.

Anyone with information about the robbery are asked to call the Elyria Police Department at 440.323.3302.


Elyria – Police in Elyria have charged a Cleveland man with kidnapping and weapons charges after a woman told them that the man had held her against her will in Lorain for more than 8 days.

Police were first called to 525 South Abbe Road, Kensington Square Apartments, in reference to a male having a female’s car keys and refusing to return them. While responding Officers were informed that the male, later identified as 28 year old Andre F. Jackson of Cleveland, had a weapon under the hood of the car.

When Police arrived they found Jackson leaning against a white Pontiac. Due to the nature of the call Officers ordered Jenkins to show his hands and to step towards them. Once Jenkins was placed in handcuffs Officers were able to speak with the woman who owns the car.

Officers found her inside of an apartment in the L building. She was, as Officers reported, “in the kitchen and timidly peeped her head from around the kitchen. As soon as she saw this Officer she ran towards me crying, and hugging me.” The Officer also stated that he could feel her shaking. After the woman calmed down she gave Police permission to search her car and then told them her story.

The woman stated that she had been held against her will for the past 8 days or more by Andre Jackson (boyfriend). She advised that part of this incident occurred in Lorain at her Gary Ave apartment. The victim told Police that Jackson would beat her up while inside the apartment. One time she called 9-1-1 and when Jackson found out she said he became violent and beat her. Officers observed old bruises and scabs. When Police in Lorain responded to her 9-1-1 call Jenkins held a gun to her head and told her to lie to the Police, which she in turn did. Officers were able to confirm this story through the Lorain Police Department.

While holding the victim against her will Jenkins made her drive him to Cleveland, to a job site, where he was working on remodeling a house. The woman told Officers that he stole tools from the site and put them in the trunk of the car, then tried to sell them at various pawnshops.

The victim told Police that she was finally able to convince Jenkins to take her to her mom’s apartment on South Abbe Road. Once at the apartment the victim went inside while Jenkins waited by the car. The victim said that as soon as she got into the apartment she called the Police.

Police searched the car and found a Cobra .380 semi-automatic handgun. The gun contained a magazine loaded with 5 live .380 rounds. Also, next to the handgun was a plastic baggy containing a box of Herster’s .380 ammunition.

Police also found a large amount of power tools in the trunk of the car including a saw, 2 air nail guns, belt sander and more.

Police have charged Jenkins with Kidnapping, Weapons Under Disability and Improper Handling Firearms in a Motor Vehicle. Jenkins was transported to the Lorain County Jail.



LeBron James will make his much awaited announcement about his NBA future Thursday. The announcement will be made during a one hour special on ESPN at 9 p.m.

The location of the announcement has not been released.

Where do you think the King has decided to play? VOTE NOW

Tuesday, July 06, 2010



Elyria – An Amherst man lost control of his motorcycle Friday evening and crashed on Leo Bullocks Parkway.

Police say that 45 year old Scott R. Hammond of Amherst was riding his 2002 Harley Davidson Road King west on Leo Bullocks Parkway, between Gateway Blvd and Murray Ridge Road, when he lost control. Hammond went off the road, crossed the median and then was ejected from the bike. The motorcycle crossed both eastbound lanes before coming to rest on the shoulder.

LifeCare Paramedics treated Hammond on scene then transported to Elyria Memorial Hospital. Hammond was then flown to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland for further treatment.

It was estimated that Hammond was traveling 50 MPH at the time of the crash. Police have charged him with Reasonable Control.




Elyria – A 67 year old Burbank Ohio man crashed into the back of a Ford F150 Friday afternoon sending him to the hospital with minor injuries.

Police say that Thomas Smith was riding a 2008 black Taiz Rakatak west on Route 57 when he slammed into the back of a 1997 Ford F150 driven by 51 year old Lewis Chenoweth of Elyria.

Chenoweth was stopped at the traffic light about 800 feet east of Gulf Road when the crash occurred.

LifeCare Paramedics treated and transported Smith to Elyria Memorial Hospital where he was treated and released later in the evening.

Smith was charged for Assured Clear Distance.



Click to enlarge

Sunday, July 04, 2010


Thursday, July 01, 2010


Story & Photos by BRIAN WOODS
Elyria – Just 24 hours after Elyria Firefighters rescued a dog from ledge over the fast moving Black River on East Bridge they had to rescue 2 cats during an apartment fire on Washington Ave.

Firefighters were called to 223 Washington Ave Wednesday evening around 6 p.m. after a fire broke out in an apartment. Fire Officials say that the cause of the fire was electrical. The fire was contained to a bedroom area. Firefighters found 2 cats, Mya and Marley, inside of the apartment barely breathing due to the smoke inhalation. Once the Firefighters brought the cats out of the apartment they administered oxygen to the cats through a small mask.

Although the fire was contained to the bedroom officials deemed the apartment uninhabitable, leaving one resident homeless.

Damage estimate was placed around $40,000.00.



Great Lakes Church invites everyone to join them on the 4th of July for their “Celebrate Freedom Service” that will be held at the Amherst Steele High School Football Stadium.

The service will be from 11 a.m. to noon and will feature the GLC Worship Band “All Things New” and the Amherst Community Choir. Featured speaker will be Army Colonel Willie Ailstock.

“This is a great opportunity to invite neighbors and friends to a very special event,” said Pastor Rich Johnson. “We’d also like to invite people to come early for some donuts and fellowship.”

Nine local churches will be canceling their services and joining the “Celebrate Freedom Service.”

Those attending are asked to park in the Amherst High School’s south parking lot near the main entrance to the stadium.

For more information check out the GREAT LAKES CHURCH WEBSITE

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