In The Region

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MHRB offers resource
online for area parents
The Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County is working to spread awareness of Ohio’s new program, Start Talking!: Building a Drug-Free Future.
Found at starttalking.ohio.gov, the website is for parents and teachers. It is aimed at helping adults learn how to start the conversation with teens and children about drug abuse.
“Portage County is among many places in Ohio where deaths from drug overdose have exceeded deaths from car accidents. Start Talking! is a tool for parents and others who work with youth to be able to have critical conversations; especially when the number of accidental deaths are increasing,” said Joel Mowrey,  executive director of the Mental Health & Recovery Board.
Those interested in helping to spread the word about Start Talking! can also call the MHRB at 330-673-1756 and receive postcards to share at their own school, work or other social functions or events.
Bridge in Kent closed
Aurorans and others who visit Kent should note that the Main Street Bridge in downtown is now closed for about 75 days for replacement of the portion of the span over the CSX Railroad tracks at the bridge’s eastern end.
The CSX bridge project is expected to last for most of the summer season. The project will not affect the historic stone arch bridge, which is a separate structure, but will cut off West Main access to downtown. Pedestrian access is expected to be maintained.

Brimfield man facing
his ninth DUI offense
Brimfield police have arrested a township man and charged him with drunken driving — his ninth offense, they said — after a traffic stop on Sandy Lake Road.
Randy L. Wolf, 62, was charged with operating a vehicle under the influence, a third-degree felony, following a traffic stop early June 11 on Sandy Lake Road by Officer John Pettit, Police Chief David Oliver said.
Wolf was ordered held in the Portage County Jail on 10 percent of $35,000 bond following arraignment in Portage County Municipal Court. His driver’s license was automatically suspended.
Conditions of making bond include no possession or consumption of alcohol, no driving until eligible and valid and being fitted with a SCRAM alcohol monitoring device.
Wolf has at least two prior drunken driving convictions in Michigan’s 9th Circuit Court in Kalamazoo, one each in November and December 1998, according to Brimfield police. It was not immediately clear where the other six convictions occurred.
— Dave O’Brien, Record-Courier
Trucker comes to aid
of 3 accident victims
A 50-year-old truck driver from North Carolina is being credited with helping pull a Ravenna man and his family from a car June 12 moments after it was involved in a fatal crash on the Ohio Turnpike in Hudson.
Alfred Floyd, 61, of Youngstown, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Ohio Highway Patrol’s Hiram Post. He was ejected from the car.
Three other people, including a Ravenna man, his mother and her daughter, were taken to local hospitals after the two-car crash in which both cars flipped and landed on their roofs.
Scott Durant, who drives for Bell Trucking in Shoemakersville, Pa., was driving westbound when he saw the eastbound cars rolling and smoke coming from the cars. He parked his rig along the berm and jumped the concrete barricade, he said.
Durant said he worked as fast as he could to help free the victims, in case the car caught on fire.
The right two lanes of traffic on the Turnpike were closed for three hours while troopers completed their on-scene investigation.
— Tim Troglen, Hub-Times
Six plead not guilty in
2 police chase deaths
Six Cleveland police officers charged in a November 2012 car chase that ended with 137 gunshots and the deaths of two unarmed people have pleaded not guilty. They were arraigned June 13 in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.
Patrolman Michael Brelo faces the most serious charges, two counts of manslaughter in the deaths of driver Timothy Russell and passenger Malissa Williams.
He’s accused of jumping on the hood of Russell’s car and unloading his weapon, firing at least 15 rounds that county prosecutor Tim McGinty has described as fatal.
Five supervisors are charged with misdemeanor dereliction of duty for failing to control the chase. An attorney who spoke on behalf of all the officers on June 13 asked that the officers be treated fairly.
— The Associated Press
Palmyra man indicted
for his 6th DUI charge
A Palmyra Township man has been indicted for his sixth alleged drunken driving offense in the last 15 years.
Shawn S. Taylor, 39, recently was indicted by a Portage County grand jury on one count each of operating a vehicle under the influence and refusal to submit to chemical tests, both third-degree felonies with specifications, according to court records.
Taylor, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, is free on $2,000 bond on the conditions he not drink alcohol or drive while the case is pending. A trial is scheduled to begin in Portage County Common Pleas Judge Laurie Pittman’s courtroom on Sept. 23.
Taylor allegedly was driving while intoxicated near milepost 4 on Route 5 in Ravenna Township on April 19 when he was stopped by an Ohio Highway Patrol trooper.
Taylor previously was convicted of five or more drunken driving offenses in Newton Falls Municipal Court. Portage County Municipal Court  and  Portage County Common Pleas Court from 2000-2010.
Mantua lands grants
for various fixup work
Mantua officials are making the most of state grants to improve village infrastructure.
The village has obtained about $485,000 in state money in the past two years for various projects.
“We’re a very small village and our funds are extremely limited,” said Mantua Administrative Services Officer Kate Rogers. “So grant projects are what help us to get some really big projects completed.”
Among the projects for which money was received are extension of a sidewalk, replacement of a bridge, paving of Route 44 and replacement of several fire hydrants.
The Downtown Revitalizatioin Corp. has been helping with  improvement efforts.
— Dan Pompeli, Record-Courier

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