Around Ohio

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Cedar Point announces permanent closing of roller coaster
Cedar Point announced Sept. 2 that one of its steel scream machines will close permanently.
Mantis, which was billed the tallest, fastest and steepest stand-up roller coaster in the world when it opened on May 11, 1996, will shut down permanently at 8 p.m. Oct. 19.
Mantis has provided more than 22 million unique rides for passengers secured in a standing position on trains.
“It’s time to say goodbye to one of the park’s coasters, and it’s certainly been a different kind of ride for our guests,” said Jason McClure, vice president and general manager of Cedar Point.
Additional plans for the 2015 season will be announced a later date, according to the park.
— Associated Press

High court upholds death sentence for Cleveland killer
Columbus — The Ohio Supreme Court has upheld the death sentence of a man condemned to die for shooting a woman at a Cleveland laundry mat.
The court’s 6-1 ruling came in the case of Jeremiah Jackson, convicted of killing Tracy Pickryl in 2009 at the end of a crime spree in Cleveland, Sandusky and Lorain.
The court’s decision Sept. 2 rejected defense arguments that the judge showed bias against Jackson by holding an unsolicited hearing to determine if Jackson had a mental disability.
Justice Terrence O’Donnell, writing for the majority, said the judge wanted to ensure that Jackson, who an expert determined is not mentally disabled, received a fair trial.
Dissenting justice William O’Neill said the hearing shouldn’t have been held after Jackson’s attorneys chose not to raise the issue.
— Associated PresS

Bottles tossed at police at party
Akron — Police say a rowdy crowd near the University of Akron threw bottles at officers while they tried to break up several big parties over the weekend.
Officers say they deployed tear gas and pepper spray just after midnight Aug. 31.
About a dozen people were arrested. One man was taken into custody after police say he threw a beer bottle and then kicked and dented a patrol cruiser.
Police were called to the area near University of Akron to shut down the parties that had drawn about 4,000 people.
Several cars were damaged during the disturbance.
— Associated PresS

State warns of driveway scams
Columbus — Ohio’s attorney general says residents should be on the lookout for driveway paving and contractor scams.
Attorney General Mike DeWine’s office reports it has received more than 60 complaints involving asphalt, concrete or paving since June. In half of the complaints, consumers reported the transactions began with a door-to-door visit.
Consumers listed cracked concrete, faulty drainage, ineffective sealing and uneven driveways in their complaints. The disputed amount in the complaints averages more than $3,000.
The attorney general’s office says consumers should check contractors’ reputations, ask family and friends for contractor recommendations, and get all contract terms in writing. Consumers should also avoid paying large down payments or paying in full until the work is complete.
— Associated PresS

Video in Wal-Mart shooting sought
Cincinnati — The president of Ohio’s legislative black caucus is urging the state attorney general to release surveillance video of the fatal police shooting of a young black man in a suburban Dayton Wal-Mart store.
State Rep. Alicia Reece (D-Cincinnati) says on her web site that she has written to Republican Attorney General Mike DeWine expressing deep concern that information isn’t being released in a way that inspires confidence, especially in the African-American community.
DeWine has said making the video public could lead to claims that the jury pool has been tainted if an upcoming grand jury investigation leads to charges.
A grand jury will meet Sept. 22 to consider charges in shooting of John Crawford III. Police say he didn’t respond to orders to put down an air rifle.
— Associated PresS

Toledo ups spending to treat water
Toledo — The cost of making sure drinking water is safe in Toledo will cost nearly $2 million more than the city expected.
City officials say they will spend about $4.7 million this year on chemicals to treat the water. That’s $1.7 million more than in normal years.
It has been almost four weeks since Ohio’s fourth-largest city issued a do-not-drink advisory after the city’s water supply was contaminated by toxins from algae on Lake Erie.
Toledo draws its water from the lake and for the last several years has been forced to spend millions of dollars to get rid of the toxins in the water.
Toledo officials say the two-day water warning in early August also cost the city more than $200,000 in overtime.
— Associated PresS

Justice pushes for annual pay raises
Columbus — The chief justice of the Ohio Supreme Court is promoting annual cost-of-living increases for judges as a way of keeping judges on the bench and making the profession attractive to new candidates.
Maureen O’Connor says choosing a career in public service shouldn’t mean being saddled with a stagnant salary, with judges now going without a raise since 2008.
O’Connor said Aug. 28 in her annual state of the judiciary speech that modest, annual cost-of-living increases that keep pace with inflation aren’t too much to ask.
O’Connor says that without competitive salaries sitting judges will move to private practice and potential judges won’t ever consider the job.
Ohio law determines elected officials’ pay, which can only be increased by lawmakers.
— Associated PresS

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