Saturday, May 24, 2003

Tristate A.M. Report



Compiled from staff and wire reports

Central State student charged with murder

WILBERFORCE - A Central State University student was charged with murder after a late-night fight Thursday outside a residence hall left a classmate - a Cincinnati native - dead.

Randale Z. Imes, 18, of Buffalo, N.Y., a freshman, was arraigned Friday morning on one count of murder. He is being held in the Greene County Jail on a $50,000 cash bond. A grand jury will hear the case Tuesday.

Investigators say Jeffery Wise, 18, a freshman and a Woodward High School graduate, died Friday morning after the fight just before midnight near Hunter Hall.

Anthony Fairbanks, vice president for institutional advancement at Central State, said Wise was hit in the throat, which caused him to have trouble breathing. He then fell and hit his face on the concrete, Fairbanks said.

School officials said late Friday that they did not know the motive for the fight.

Wise was flown to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton and died Friday morning.

Man found dead under 2nd St. ramp

The body of a man who apparently lived in an encampment under the Second Street on-ramp of the Clyde Wade Bailey Bridge was discovered Friday.

Police, who are not releasing the name until family members can be notified, said the death appears to be of natural causes. An autopsy is scheduled today.

Campaign case sent to Ohio Supreme Court

HAMILTON - Butler County Prosecutor Robin Piper is asking the Ohio Supreme Court to address issues "of great public concern" regarding a campaign fund-raising controversy.

Piper took the case of Mark A. Conese, a former county elections board member, to the Supreme Court after appellate judges refused to reconsider their April reversal of Conese's misdemeanor conviction.

Last year, a jury had found him guilty of soliciting or receiving improper compensation.

That charge arose from a March 2000 meeting with part-time board employee Brent Dixon, who secretly tape-recorded the meeting in which he was told he might lose his job if he didn't increase his contributions to the county Democratic Party.

Conese, 45, also faces possible disciplinary action on his law license if a board finds his conduct violated the Code of Professional Responsibility for lawyers.

Fire captain cleared of unsolved rapes

MASON - The Madeira-Indian Hill fire captain jailed in an attack on a Columbus woman this month is not responsible for a string of rapes in Warren and Hamilton counties since 1998, police said.

Mason Detective Scott Doughman said DNA analysis ruled out Michael A. Cornelius as a suspect.

Cornelius, a 33-year-old married father of three, is being held in Franklin County on a $1 million bond following his indictment May 19 on charges of aggravated burglary and abduction.

He was arrested May 8 and accused of breaking into the home of a 21-year-old woman near the Ohio State University. Cornelius was in Columbus attending a week-long fire conference.

Cornelius, who has since been suspended for his job, was arrested at the scene.

His DNA was analyzed as part of a routine investigation into the unsolved rapes of four children and a 27-year-old woman that have been linked through DNA to a single unidentified suspect.

Butler Co. man dies inside burning car

REILY TWP. - A 35-year-old Reily Township man died Friday when the car he was working on caught fire and he was trapped inside.

Joel P. Burton was working on a car in a rear garage at his mother's house on Stephenson Road, the Butler County Sheriff's Office reported.

When his mother, Cathy Teeter, checked on him about 4:45 p.m., the car was on fire with her son inside.

Deputies said Teeter was able to get Burton partly out of the car before calling for help, but could not remove him completely. She also tried to douse the fire with a garden hose.

Cause of the fire was not immediately known. Investigators have not ruled out accident or suicide. An autopsy will be performed.




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