Monday, February 10, 2003

Tristate A.M. Report



Corryville man faces felony drug charge

BOND HILL - A Corryville man faces a felony drug possession charge after police said they found him with 80 grams of cocaine Saturday night.

Cincinnati police said they saw Kelly Brinson, 18, urinating on the side of a Shell gas station at 1900 Seymour Ave. about 8:30 p.m. After Officer Dewayne Carter took his identification, Brinson ran from Carter and Officer Marcus Sherman - throwing down a plastic bag containing three bags of powder and rock cocaine during the foot pursuit, police said.

Brinson also was charged with disorderly conduct and obstructing official business.

Diocese warns about disclosing abuse

CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Roman Catholic Diocese has warned a prosecutor not to release information about 145 priests accused of sexual abuse, a newspaper reported.

Cuyahoga County Prosecutor William Mason said many priests were not indicted in a grand jury investigation last year because the cases were too old. The region's 800,000 Catholics may never know how many priests escaped criminal charges or how many were innocent, unless a judge lets the prosecutor release information normally kept secret.

Mason had said he would open a roomful of investigative files to the public. But he backed off after Jones Day, a Cleveland law firm hired by Bishop Anthony M. Pilla, warned against doing that. Ten days after the grand jury issued criminal indictments against one priest and six diocesan employees in early December, lawyer Stephen Sozio said he would sue if Mason released the records.

Sozio cited an Ohio law that shields grand jury investigative materials from public view.

Diocesan spokesman Robert Tayek said the church took this position because the documents "contain personal, intimate information that was given in confidence."

"Disclosure could only bring more harm, humiliation and embarrassment for all parties involved," he told the Plain Dealer, adding that "to the best of our knowledge," no priests against whom allegations have been made are still in active ministry.

Man shot in chest, pistol-hit at home

A man was shot in the chest and hand, and pistol whipped, Sunday morning in his Walnut Hills home, but survived the ordeal, Cincinnati police said.

Police would not identify the victim. Authorities said he was attacked by a man visiting his second-floor apartment in the 3000 block of Mathers Avenue at 10:50 a.m. Sunday. A woman also was in the apartment at the time.

During the shooting, a bullet went through the floor, nearly hitting a female resident in the apartment below who was sitting on a couch watching television.

Indiana license tag now uses bar code

INDIANAPOLIS - An inconspicuous bar code beneath the green countryside painted on Indiana's new license plate released last month is the same sort that appears on ice cream containers in a grocery store.

The technology used by stores everywhere is already decades old. But motor vehicle departments in New York, Iowa and Indiana now are using it to make vehicle information as easily accessible as the price on a pint of Neapolitan.

Designed as a tracking system to ease the process of registering a vehicle, as well as monitoring inventory of the state's license plates, BMV officials hope bar codes will make registering a car easier. The bar code is aimed at helping license branches plagued by endless lines serve residents more quickly.

The BMV also has begun offering services over the telephone, on the Internet and even by automated teller machines.

The information contained in the bar code is the same as a license plate.

Volunteers get ready for city cleanup

Keep Cincinnati Beautiful met with about 50 neighborhood volunteers at City Hall this weekend to prepare for the Great American Cleanup campaign.

Last year, about 525 people collected almost 60,000 pounds of trash, removed graffiti and planted flowers in Over-the-Rhine and the West End.

The 2003 cleanup is Saturday, April 26. For more information, call 352-4380.

Officials can't find 301 sex offenders

COLUMBUS - Law enforcement officials statewide cannot find at least 301 sex offenders who have failed to register their address as required by state law.

That figure represents 3.3 percent of the 9,086 sex offenders listed on the state's sex offender registration network.

It's a small number when compared with other states, including California. That state reported last month it could not find 33,296, or 44 percent, of its offenders.

All states have versions of the sex-offender reporting law named for 7-year-old Megan Kanka, a New Jersey girl raped and killed by a child molester who had moved in across the street.

Ohio's offender network was established in 1997 by the state's version of Megan's Law. It relies upon felons to register with local sheriff's offices. But the felons aren't always reliable.

Those who don't register can be convicted of a felony punishable by as much as one year in prison.

- Compiled from staff and wire reports




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