Tuesday, September 17, 2002

Local Digest

Man shot dead on Bond Hill street

        Cincinnati police are looking for a tan or gold car that might have been involved in a Monday morning homicide in Bond Hill.

        Officers found Rashad Barnes, 20, of Bond Hill shot to death about 5:40 a.m. on the sidewalk in the 1600 block of California Avenue, near the intersection with Reading Road.

        Mr. Barnes was the 46th victim of homicide in the city so far this year. That compares with 42 as of the same time in 2001.

        He spent a day in jail in April 2001 after being cited during the riots for being out after curfew.

        Investigators ask anyone with information to call them at 352-3542 or Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

        Light-rail foes rally at courthouse

        Opponents of a proposed $2.6 billion light rail system and the tax levy on the Nov. 5 ballot that would pay the local share of the construction costs rallied Monday on the steps of the Hamilton County Courthouse, saying they had strong political support for their position.

        Those who spoke had to shout to be heard over other demonstrators at the courthouse who were protesting Hamilton County Prosecutor Mike Allen, seeking to reopen the case involving a former Cincinnati police officer and the death of an African-American man while in custody.

        “We want Cincinnati to continue to be vibrant, and if we funnel all our transportation dollars to this project, that won't happen,” said Stephan Louis, a Pleasant Ridge medical supplies salesman and chairman of the Alternatives to Light Rail Transit campaign, which was holding its official kickoff event.

        The leadership of the campaign includes U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot, R-Westwood, as well as Democratic Hamilton County Auditor Dusty Rhodes and Republican Hamilton County Commissioner John Dowlin.

        Metro, the county's public bus service, is asking Hamilton County voters to approve a half-cent sales tax increase to pay for MetroMoves, its $2.7 billion plan that includes the light rail system.

        Blackwell to rule on judge dispute

        Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell will decide whether the Hamilton County Board of Elections hears the merits of a protest filed in the only contested race for county Common Pleas judge.

        In a 2-2 tie Monday, board members failed to reach a consensus on whether to hear the challenge filed by Democratic candidate Bruce B. Whitman against his Republican opponent, Frederick D. Nelson.

        By state law, Mr. Blackwell will have to break the tie.

        Board of Elections Director Julia Stautberg said her office will forward information about the issue and Monday's vote to Mr. Blackwell by Friday.

        In August, Mr. Whitman filed a protest charging that Mr. Nelson is not qualified to run for judge because there is no record that he practiced law in Ohio for six years as required by statute.

        Mr. Nelson countered that he is qualified and has the necessary years of service in Ohio. He also contends that the Board of Elections has no jurisdiction over the issue because a challenge has to be filed before the primary. Monday's vote followed along party lines with Democratic board members siding with Mr. Whitman and Republicans backing Mr. Nelson.

        Pride Center office to be spotlighted

        Cincinnati Mayor Charlie Luken is expected to announce the location of the city's new Vine Street Neighborhood Pride Center this morning.

        The center, at 1321 Vine St., will be a “one-stop shop” for residents, businesses and investors to get access to city services in Over-the-Rhine.

        Mr. Luken declared Vine Street “the most important street in the city” in his State of the City Address in January. His Vine Street coordinator, James A. Franklin, will work out of the Vine Street office.


700,000 expected downtown this weekend
New school chief puts kids first
Smaller convention expansion unveiled
Library to cut back hours
Marines train in Dayton for urban combat
PULFER: Dog tales
Boycott leaders protest prosecutor
Forest Park bans kids playing on street
UC gets $30M to research strokes
$39M UC dorm first in 30 years
Dog-eating coyotes outfox sharpshooters
Elderly couple die in crash
Lawyer claims flaws in Boyles indictment
Light-rail foes rally at courthouse
- Local Digest
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Clermont increases nonsupport arrests
Home closings may see changes
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Around the Commonwealth
Trial set for sheriff's alleged shooter