Actor Michael Keaton to give Kent State commencement address
KENT — Actor Michael Keaton is slated to give the commencement address at Ohio’s Kent State University.
Keaton enrolled at Kent State in 1971, intending to major in journalism and speech. He left school to pursue acting, landing appearances on “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood,” ”Maude” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.” His range of hit movies includes “Batman,” ”Birdman” and “Spotlight.”
Keaton spoke at Kent State in 1985 and said then that he would like to return someday.
Kent State President Beverly Warren says having Keaton speak at the May 12th ceremony is a “rare opportunity” for graduates to hear from “someone who has walked in their shoes and now has risen to the top of his field.”
The school will pay Keaton $100,000, the same it paid actress Octavia Spencer last year.
Historic building collapses, nearby businesses close
MEDINA — A historic building has collapsed in Ohio, leading officials to close nearby businesses until it is stabilized or torn down.
Medina Fire Chief Bob Painter says the back canopy of the three-story Medina building collapsed Sunday during the town’s Ice Festival. He says residents called to report the damage around 9 a.m. Monday as the back walls on the building’s first floor caved in.
First responders arrived as the walls on the building’s second and third floors crumbled. The building was not occupied at the time, and no injuries were reported.
Painter says the building had a water leak that may have caused the wooden beams to rot. The official cause of the collapse has not been determined.
Built in 1873, the building currently houses a home decor store.
Police say man, 20, threatened shooting at high school
TOLEDO — A 20-year-old man accused of threatening a shooting at an Ohio high school has been charged with inducing panic and held on $50,000 bond.
Toledo police say Christian Costet, of East Toledo, was arrested Monday after a parent reported to police that students had seen images and Facebook messages of Costet threatening a Tuesday shooting at Waite High School.
The Blade reports that Costet was pictured with a replica rifle later found in an abandoned home.
A judge on Tuesday ordered Costet to have no contact with the school and assigned him a public defender. The Toledo public defender’s office wouldn’t comment on the case.
A district spokeswoman told The Blade that the school would have extra officers on hand while classes were in session Tuesday.
Judge stops village from cutting water to mobile home park
MALVERN — A judge has issued a temporary restraining order to stop an Ohio village from cutting off water to residents of a mobile home park.
The Canton Repository reports the village of Malvern was about to stop water service at Sandy Creek Estates Mobile Home Park because those responsible for the bill allowed the past due amount to grow to more than $15,000.
Attorneys representing the residents of the mobile home park requested a temporary restraining order last month.
The Carroll County Municipal Court has created an escrow account for tenants to make rent payments. It also created a new water service account.
An attorney for Malvern says he doesn’t know how long the arrangement will last, but the village plans to try and collect the past due amount.
Low-lying areas see river flooding in south, east
CINCINNATI — Roads and businesses in some low-lying areas have had to close along the Ohio River after days of rain swelled waterways past their banks.
Some businesses were flooded over the long weekend in the city of Pomeroy and other parts of southeast Ohio. Riverside areas along the Ohio in the Cincinnati area were also swamped Monday.
The National Weather Service expects the Ohio to crest early Wednesday in the Cincinnati area at around 56 feet, a level associated with “moderate flooding.” Forecasters expect more roads, basements and smaller waterways to flood later in the week with several more days of rainfall ahead.
Authorities: Student shoots self at middle school
MASSILLON — A school official in Ohio says a middle school student apparently shot himself after bringing a gun to school.
Police say Jackson Middle School, near Massillon, is on lockdown Tuesday and that the students and staff are safe.
The school official tells The Independent newspaper that the student is being treated at a hospital.
Authorities and school officials haven’t released any other details about the shooting.
Massillon is located about 50 miles south of Cleveland.
Man suspected of shooting girl waiting in car due in court
AKRON — A man suspected of fatally shooting a 4-year-old girl as she sat in the back seat of a car is set to make his initial appearance in a northeastern Ohio court.
Police say 31-year-old Darnell Bitting was arrested Saturday in Akron for the Friday night shooting of Janaya Swain.
Bitting has been held on charges including murder. It wasn’t clear whether he had an attorney ahead of his arraignment expected Tuesday in Akron Municipal Court.
Akron police say the shooting happened after Janaya’s mother drove to a home to retrieve belongings from Bitting and broke some windows. Police say Bitting stepped outside with a rifle and fired once at the car, striking one of several children waiting in the vehicle.
Janaya was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Fleeing car crashes into tree during police chase, killing 2
CLEVELAND — Authorities say a suspected stolen car fleeing police in a high-speed chase crashed into a tree in Cleveland, killing two people in the vehicle.
The crash around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday split the fleeing vehicle into several pieces and scattered debris in the yards of several homes a few miles south of downtown Cleveland. No other injuries were immediately reported.
The car had been reported stolen. WJW-TV reports police in suburban Shaker Heights tried to stop the vehicle and then pursued it when the driver fled, starting the minutes-long chase.
Cleveland police didn’t immediately release details about the people who died. The crash is under investigation.