Ohio News Briefs


Staff Reports



Man Sentenced to Prison After Exposing East Liverpool Officer to Fentanyl During Traffic Stop

EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio — Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and Columbiana County Prosecutor Robert Herron announced that a man accused of assaulting a police officer with fentanyl pleaded guilty today to multiple drug-related charges.

Justin Buckel, 25, of East Liverpool, pleaded guilty this afternoon to the following 23 charges:

  • Engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity
  • Aggravated trafficking in drugs (three counts)
  • Trafficking in heroin (two counts)
  • Trafficking in cocaine (two counts)
  • Aggravated possession of drugs (13 counts)
  • Tampering with evidence
  • Assault on a peace officer

Buckel was sentenced to a total of 6.5 years in prison on all 23 counts.

The assault and tampering with evidence charges relate to a May 2017 incident in which Buckel (pictured) exposed East Liverpool Police Officer Chris Green to fentanyl during a traffic stop conducted as part of “Operation Big Oak.” Officer Green survived the exposure after being revived with four doses of naloxone.

“Fentanyl is so dangerous that even the slightest exposure can be deadly, but thankfully in this case naloxone was close at hand,” said Attorney General DeWine. “We are serious about holding drug traffickers responsible for bringing this poison into our neighborhoods.”

The other charges are also associated with the “Big Oak” (Breaking Into Gangs/Opiate Addiction Knockdown) investigation conducted by the Columbiana County Drug Task Force last year. Buckel was one of 100 people indicted in November as a result of the investigation that uncovered a large-scale fentanyl, carfentanil, heroin, and cocaine trafficking ring.

According to investigators, those accused of trafficking drugs as part of the drug trafficking organization are allegedly responsible for funneling the equivalent of approximately 1 million potentially fatal doses of carfentanil and approximately 350,000 potentially fatal doses of fentanyl into Columbiana County alone.

Two of the alleged ringleaders of the drug trafficking organization, Allen Jackson, 26, of Cleveland, and Anthony Jackson, 30, of Cleveland Heights, are still wanted on charges connected to the case.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Allen Jackson or Anthony Jackson should contact the Columbiana County Drug Task Force at 330-424-0309.

Ohio Man Sentenced to Repay Victims After Phony Energy Drink Investment Scheme

NEW PHILADELPHIA, Ohio — Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Commerce – Division of Securities Commissioner Andrea Seidt announced that a New Philadelphia man has been sentenced to repay tens of thousands of dollars he stole by selling fraudulent securities in Tuscarawas County.

Keith Elsesser, 51, pleaded guilty in January to two felony counts of grand theft and four felony counts of unlawful securities practices for stealing a total of more than $90,000 from two victims.

At his sentencing hearing this afternoon, Elsesser was sentenced to pay full restitution to both victims of the scheme.

An investigation led by the Division of Securities found that Elsesser sold phony securities to two local investors between 2011 and 2013. Elsesser misled the victims into believing they were investing in an energy drink venture. The investigation found that he instead spent the funds on things like groceries, movies, rental cars, and other entertainment.

Elsesser paid $10,000 of the restitution today and was ordered to pay $1,500 in restitution each month hereafter. He was also sentenced to seven days in jail and five years of community control. A community control violation could result in six years in prison.

The case was prosecuted by attorneys with Attorney General DeWine’s Special Prosecutions Section.

The case was investigated with the assistance of the Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the New Philadelphia Police Department, and the Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Office.

Seven Indicted in Jefferson County Poaching Case

COLUMBUS – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) announced the indictment of seven individuals who allegedly participated in a poaching enterprise that is suspected of illegally killing white-tailed deer and wild turkey. These crimes are alleged to have been committed from the years of 2006-2017.

This multi-year investigation that concluded with these seven indictments was a collaboration between the ODNR Division of Wildlife, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (Environmental Enforcement Section), the Ohio Attorney General’s Office (Environmental Enforcement Section), West Virginia Natural Resources Police, Pennsylvania Game Commission, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

This investigation spanned across Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Texas and Washington. One individual, Jason Cue, has pleaded guilty in West Virginia to charges related to the investigation.

Anyone observing or suspecting that wildlife violations are occurring may report illegal activity by calling the Turn-In-A-Poacher (TIP) hotline toll-free at 800-POACHER.

Charges include:

Nathan Cline (39), Steubenville OH.

1 Count Felony 2nd Degree-Engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity

1 Count Felony 5th Degree-Unauthorized use of property

1 Count Felony 5th Degree-Falsification

1 Count Felony 4th Degree-Grand Theft

4 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Theft

4 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Possession of Criminal tools

2 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Complicity to theft

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Complicity to petty theft

6 Counts Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

6 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without Permission

5 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Possession of un-tagged deer parts

5 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Possession of deer taken illegally

4 Counts Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Possession of wild turkey taken illegally

Robby Gilbert (38), New Freeport, Pennsylvania

1 Count Felony 2nd Degree-Engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity

6 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Failure to permanently tag wild turkey

2 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Failure to permanently tag wild white-tailed deer

1 Count Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting with the use of a motor vehicle

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Leaving the state with an untagged turkey

2 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Theft

1 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Possessing criminal tools

3 Counts Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

Marlon Hale (39), Irondale, Ohio

1 Count Felony 2nd Degree-Engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity

1 Count Felony 5th Degree-Possessing criminal tools

1 Count Felony 3rd Degree-Telecommunications fraud

1 Count Felony 4th Degree-Grand theft

2 Counts Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Hunting without a license

9 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Hunting with a motor vehicle

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Complicity to petty theft

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Complicity to shooting from a public roadway

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Complicity taking a wild hen turkey during closed season

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Complicity to illegal possession of wild turkey or turkey parts

2 Counts Felony 5th Degree-Complicity to theft

Waylon Deatrick (36), lckesburg, Pennsylvania

2 Counts Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Criminal trespassing

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

Richard Harr (39), McKeesport, Pennsylvania

1 Count Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

Josh Mclaren (38), Toronto, Ohio

1 Count Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

Ronnie Griffith (73), Gary, Texas

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Hunting with a motor vehicle

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Taking a hen turkey during closed season

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Shooting from a public roadway

1 Count Misdemeanor 3rd Degree-Hunting without permission

1 Count Misdemeanor 4th Degree-Failure to permanently tag turkey

1 Count Misdemeanor 1st Degree-Petty theft

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

6-State Trooper Project targeted drugs, illegal weapons

COLUMBUS – The Ohio State Highway Patrol joined forces with other members of the 6-State Trooper Project to remove drugs and illegal weapons from our communities. The initiative began on Thursday, March 8 at 12:01 a.m. and continued through Saturday, March 10 at 11:59 p.m. During that time period, troopers made 17 weapon arrests and 248 drug arrests.

This high-visibility enforcement effort included the Indiana State Police, Kentucky State Police, Michigan State Police, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Pennsylvania State Police and the West Virginia State Police.

The 6-State Trooper Project is a multi-state law enforcement partnership aimed at providing combined and coordinated law enforcement and security services in the areas of highway safety, criminal patrol and intelligence sharing.

State Highway Patrol · 1970 West Broad Street · Columbus, OH 43235-2206 GovDelivery logo

Unemployment dropped in Ohio at the turn of the new year

By Chris White

Friday, March 9th 2018

COLUMBUS (WSYX/WTTE) — More people were employed in Ohio at the start of 2018.

Ohio’s unemployment rate dropped from 4.9 percent in December to 4.7 percent in January per the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, ODJFS. 12,100 more Ohioans were employed in January with an increase from 5,534,300 people to 5,546,000 people.

ODJFS said the number of unemployed Ohioans dropped from 281,000 in December to 271,000 in January.

Nationally, the unemployment rate stayed the same at the turn of the new year at 4.1 percent, but more jobs were added in February.

Headlines:

OSHP: Road rage led to fatal, fiery crash in Licking County; victim identified

Thousands of golf balls recovered from historic Ohio lake

Deputies say woman beaten, sexually assaulted and pushed off a cliff in Meigs County, Ohio

Central Ohio Applebee’s locations affected by data breach 3

Police arrest mom after 9-month-old baby found in road

Moving truck catches fire at I-71 rest area north of Polaris

Five women arrested for role in nationwide Walmart scam

Michigan woman killed after meeting man on dating site PlentyOfFish

Canal Winchester man sentenced to 10 years in prison for drug trafficking

Sen. Elizabeth Warren Offers Amendment to “Bank Lobbyist Act” to Crack Down on Bank Offshoring

Communications Workers of America

New Amendment Filed After Release of CWA Report Detailing Bank Offshoring Practices and Implications

Washington, DC – Following the release of CWA’s report on big bank offshoring practices last week, Senator Elizabeth Warren has introduced a new amendment that would crack down on some of the banks who are the biggest practitioners of offshoring and add more accountability to the offshoring process.

Senator Warren’s amendment (S. Amdt. 2061) to the big bank deregulation bill currently before the U.S. Senate, S. 2155, commonly known as the “Bank Lobbyist Act,” would ensure that “any financial institution that has outsourced more than 50 jobs” in any year over the past five years would be ineligible for some of the deregulatory provisions in the new legislation. Sen. Warren’s amendment also would create a list of financial institutions that outsource more than 50 jobs in any given year, with the list compiled and maintained by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, in consultation with the U.S. Secretary of Labor.

The new amendment comes on the heels of the release of the new CWA report, co-authored with the Committee for Better Banks (CBB), detailing numerous examples of how the banking industry has been laying off American workers, especially in the call center industry, while ramping up operations overseas in low-wage countries (access a copy of the new report here). Despite the offshoring practices detailed in the report, and the financial windfall the banking industry is set to gain through the Republican’s December 2017 tax bill, there is no movement from the big banks to return jobs from overseas. In fact, leading analysts believe that the tax bill will encourage the additional offshoring of American jobs.

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee, joined Communications Workers of America (CWA) President Chris Shelton and affected call center workers on a press call last week to discuss the bank offshoring trend and consequences (access press release with speaker quotes and audio link to press call here).

The new CWA report includes a detailed look of the offshoring practices of Wells Fargo and Capital One, both of which have engaged in recent rounds of layoffs of American call center workers while ramping up operations overseas in the Philippines. The report also offers examples of American layoffs and overseas operations for a host of other too-big-to-fail and large regional U.S. banks and financial institutions –Ally Financial, American Express, Bank of America, Citi, Citizens Bank, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, M&T, Morgan Stanley, State Street, and SunTrust, many of which would be among the biggest beneficiaries of the Bank Lobbyist Act. It also offers a snapshot of Equifax’s call center presence overseas, an underappreciated story-line as observers try to piece together their massive security breach and bolster prevention. By design, corporate offshoring often takes place without accountability and transparency. As a result, the details of American layoffs and expanded operations overseas are just examples and evidence of this larger trend – we expect that the actual numbers of jobs off-shored are even higher.

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Staff Reports

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