Monday, March 26, 2001

Local Digest

Ohio Supreme Court to hear Wehrung case

        The Ohio Supreme Court will hear arguments May 15 to determine whether a suburban Cincinnati businessman should be tried as an adult or juvenile on charges from a 1963 slaying.

        Michael Wehrung, 53, is accused of killing his high school girlfriend, Patricia Ann Rebholz, when they were both 15.

        Mr. Wehrung's attorneys are asking the Supreme Court to overturn a ruling by Judge Patrick Dinkelacker of Hamilton County Common Pleas Court that Mr. Wehrung should be tried as an adult.

        If the case remains in adult court, Mr. Wehrung could be sentenced to life in prison on a second-degree murder charge. If the case ends up in juvenile court, Mr. Wehrung probably wouldn't be punished even if convicted. The juvenile court has jurisdiction only until the defendant turns 21.

        Mr. Wehrung pleaded not guilty to charges that he bludgeoned Ms. Rebholz to death with a fence post when she ended their relationship.

Man, 27, killed
in morning car crash

               PIERCE TOWNSHIP — A New Richmond man was killed early Sunday morning in a Clermont County crash in which two others suffered minor injuries, the Ohio State Highway Patrol in Batavia said.

        Paul Saenz, 27, died at Miami Valley Hospital, after the 1:19 a.m. crash on Pond Run Road. He was a front-seat passenger in a 2001 Pontiac Trans Am driven by Aaron Knorr, 24, of Cincinnati.

        Neither Mr. Saenz nor Mr. Knorr was wearing a seat belt. Mr. Knorr was treated at Anderson Mercy Hospital.

        A backseat passenger, Brenda Knorr, 24, of Cincinnati, who was wearing a seat belt, also was treated at Anderson Mercy.

        Police say Mr. Knorr lost control of the car, drove off the right side of the road, then over-corrected and slid off the left side, striking a tree and mailbox post.

        When the vehicle overturned, Mr. Saenz was ejected, police said.

        The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

Man charged with
assault in stabbing

               A Westwood man was charged with felonious assault Saturday in connection with the stabbing of a man in Washington Park in Over-the-Rhine, Cincinnati police said.

        Josue Gonzalez Jerez of the 3000 block of Montana Avenue was arrested at 4:40 p.m. Saturday, five minutes after a man was stabbed in the buttocks at the park on Elm Street.

        The victim, who implicated Mr. Jerez, was treated at University Hospital. His condition was not known Sunday night.

Avondale man faces
charges in killing

               A 32-year-old Avondale man has been charged in the killing of a neighbor on Feb. 23.

        Charles Blevins of the 500 block of Hale Avenue was charged last week in the death of Robert Lemar White, 19, who lived on the same block. He was killed in his apartment.

        Mr. Blevins, who had been on the Tristate's Most Wanted list, was apprehended Wednesday after he fled from a car during a traffic stop outside Columbus.

        Cincinnati detectives went to Franklin County to interview him. Mr. Blevins is in the Franklin County Jail awaiting extradition.

Friars turn to Web
to bring back Catholics

               The Franciscan friars of Cincinnati have turned to the Internet to help people come back to the Roman Catholic church.

        The site,, refers to the saying, “Once a Catholic, always a Catholic.”

        The site addresses issues that have led some Catholics to leave the church, including dissatisfaction about marriage doctrine or differences in belief.

New signs, maps
erected downtown

               New signs have been erected in downtown Cincinnati to help people find their way to riverfront and downtown attractions and landmarks.

        The color-coded system is similar to one in Newport and Covington in which blue-colored signs direct pedestrians and motorists to riverfront sites, while bronze-colored signs direct them to downtown sites.

        In addition, new street signs with stainless street lettering have been installed on traffic booms along Second and Third streets to identify the north-south streets downtown. And 11 map kiosks have been added along Second and Third streets.

        The signs and maps are designed to help people better navigate construction and roadwork downtown, said John Deatrick, director of the city's department of transportation and engineering.

Houses for a buck —
but with a big catch

               FRANKLIN, Ind. — For a limited time, a buck will buy a historic house. But there's a catch: The buyer also must pay to demolish the home or move it.

        Franklin College is selling eight houses along Wilson Street for a dollar apiece. The houses must go by June to make room for a new boulevard.

        “If you buy a house, it's your responsibility to get it off the property,” said Larry Griffith, vice president of business and finance for the college.

        One house mover estimated it would cost between $25,000 and $35,000 just to lift a one-story home from its foundation. The estimate did not include the costs of moving the house, buying a new lot, pouring a new foundation, getting the necessary permits and connecting utilities.

Councilman, wife
die in house fire

               MORAINE, Ohio — A city councilman and his wife died Saturday in a fire at their home in this Dayton suburb.

        Ronald Payne, 65, was pronounced dead at the scene. His wife, Margaret, 66, died on the way to the hospital, authorities said.

        The Paynes' 16-year-old twin grandsons, who also lived in the home, tried to save their grandparents, authorities said. Joey and Jimmy Pearson were treated for smoke inhalation and minor injuries and released from Miami Valley Hospital.

        The fire, which apparently began about 12:45 a.m. Saturday in the enclosed front porch area, quickly spread throughout the one-story concrete block and brick home, authorities said. The cause of the fire is under investigation by the state fire marshal's office and Dayton fire investigators, said Moraine fire Lt. Anthony Trick.

        He estimated damage at about $89,000.

        Mr. Payne's grandsons said they heard a loud crash and what sounded like explosions. “I thought somebody was trying to break in,” Jimmy said. “I opened the door to my room and it filled with black smoke. I ran out and tried to come back for them.”


Gala opening for Children's Hospital center
Hopple Street widening begins
RADEL: The arena we love to hate
Recruit's buddies here to grieve
Teen arrested in ice-cream truck killing
Use of green space opposed
New signs, maps guide to downtown
Runner doesn't flee from marriage proposal after race
Airport's eager for terminal to be started
Campbell dispatch board rolls up sleeves
Dig to seek artifacts at Wright brothers site
Friars turn to Web to bring back Catholics
Graduation requirements increased
Lakota writers win top awards
Lebanon balks at land price
- Local Digest
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