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Ohio


Headline News for Friday, May 13, 2011
Demjanjuk free as attorneys plan appeal; Cleveland courts lay off dozens; Parole board makes first clemency recommendation to Kasich
by WKSU's AMANDA RABINOWITZ


Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
 
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  • German court releases Demjanjuk while attorneys prepare former death camp guard's appeal
  • Cleveland court system laying off nearly 40 employees as part of city's compensation for lost state funding
  • Parole board recommends life without parole in controversial case against convicted killer
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Headline News 05/13/11... 

A German court has released former Clevelander John Demjanjuk as his attorneys prepare an appeal of his conviction on Nazi war crimes. The court convicted Demjanjuk of being an accomplice to murder for serving as a guard at a death camp in Poland.  He was sentenced to five-years in prison. The Ukrainian Demjanjuk had been a German prisoner of war. But holocaust survivor Zev Harel of Cleveland says the court proceedings show Demjanjuk volunteered to work in the death camps and deserves his fate. A New Jersey-based archbishop with the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is helping Demjanjuk find a home and says he hopes the 91-year-old will be able to serve his parole with his family in the United States or return here while his conviction is being appealed.

 

An Ohio nursing home association critical of Gov. John Kasich's proposed budget cuts is pulling a television ad that ends with a flat line and a hand pulling a plug out of a wall socket. Ohio Health Care Association Executive Director Pete Van Runkle says a number of legislators requested the ad be pulled and the group decided to give them a chance to address the issue.  Kasich on Monday defended his proposal to cut $427 million to nursing homes.

 

Cleveland’s court system is laying off about three dozen employees. Thirty-seven municipal court workers are being let go, including magistrates, bailiffs and probation officers.  The cuts follow Mayor Frank Jackson’s announcement last month that 400 city workers would be laid off to deal with a loss of state funding.

 

The parole board has a made a recommendation to Governor John Kasich in the controversial case surrounding the convicted killer who’s next on the execution schedule. Ohio Public Radio’s Karen Kasler has details.

 

The State Auditor’s office says an employee’s computer was stolen that contained some financial audits of public offices in Northwest Ohio.  The employee was suspended for about two weeks because a password for access to the files was attached to the computer.  The state has spent nearly $2 million for new software to better encrypt information on state computers and add tracking devices to so information could be deleted remotely.

 

General Motors CEO Dan Akerson has invested more of his own money in the company.  Akerson bought 30,000 GM shares, spending close to $1 million. The purchase increases his personal holdings of GM stock to 50,000 shares.   The stock debuted in November. But it has slumped since hitting a high of nearly $39 in January.

 

One of the top targets convicted in the Cuyahoga County corruption probe could get an extra five months of freedom. Federal prosecutors have asked a court to delay former County Auditor Frank Russo’s May 26 prison start date to October to make it easier for him to testify at former County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora’s September trial. Russo’s prison term was set last year when he had not agreed to cooperate with prosecutors.  He was sentenced to nearly 22 years in prison. 

 

A Copley man is one of five US Postal Service managers charged with felony bribery charges. Jeffery Adams, allegedly accepted more than $60,000 in cash and $40,000 for a home loan from a private contractor in exchange for contracts on postal service vehicles.  Adams managed the Wolf Ledges Parkway vehicle maintenance facility in Akron for the last four years.  Post Office spokesman Scott Balfour says tips from fellow employees led to the arrest. Balfour added that Adams allegedly started the fraud in Detroit and continued after his transfer to Akron in 2007. 

 

A new study by a left leaning think tank shows the state’s largest online schools are not effective. Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports. 

 

Kent State University is suing former men's basketball coach Geno Ford for more than $1.2 million in damages over his recent departure for Bradley University in Illinois.  The lawsuit alleges Ford had no permission to terminate his contract with Kent State and argues the Bradley did not pay Kent State an early departure fee.  Bradley’s athletic director says the hiring process was handled professionally with Kent State's "clear consent."


The latest U.S. Census Bureau numbers show home ownership in Ohio declined in the last decade.  More than 300,000 Ohioans have moved from home owners to renters because of the recession.  David Rothstein is a foreclosure and mortgage rate analyst for Policy Matters Ohio.  He says lower home prices won’t be enough to push buyers back into the market. Rothstein says qualified home buyers are also staying out of the market because of job security concerns.

 

Ohio Senate Republicans want to get rid of special elections as part of an elections bill expected to be voted out of committee next week. The chairman of the Senate Government Oversight Committee says eliminating February and August special elections will help counties save money. He said local officials should be able to get their ballot issues taken care of in either the primary or general elections.

 

The Indians now have a two game losing streak after dropping the series finale against the Rays 7-4 yesterday afternoon. Cleveland lost for just the second time in 16 home games and pitcher Justin Masterson was handed his first loss of the season.

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