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Morning news headlines December 17, 2012
Ohio mourns Connecticut shooting victims; T.J. Lane's family wants its comments kept out of Chardon shooting trial; Public meetings beginning on Cleveland Schools plan
by WKSU's AMANDA RABINOWITZ


Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
 
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  • Northeast Ohio mourns victims of Connecticut shooting
  • T.J. Lane’s attorney wants family comments kept out of trial
  • Public meetings set to begin on Cleveland Schools plan
  • RTA driver dead after crash
  • Hearing today for condemned inmate who says he’s too fat to be executed
  • Ohio’s Electoral College members meeting today
  • 3.5 million Ohioans hitting the road for the holidays
  • Browns fall to Redskins
  • Northeast Ohio mourns victims of Connecticut shooting
    In the wake of the Connecticut school shooting rampage, many congregations and communities throughout Northeast Ohio are holding vigils to remember the victims and to call for change. On Sunday, Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland used a vigil to also encourage Governor John Kasich to strike down a bill that would loosen gun restrictions in Ohio. The bill passed by the Legislature last week and awaiting the governor’s signature would allow lawmakers and visitors to the Capitol to keep guns in their cars parked in the Statehouse garage. Elsewhere, the names of the victims were read and a candle lit for each one at the In Touch for Christ Christian Center in Cleveland. The reverend at the First Congregational Church in Columbus dedicated his sermon to the 20 children and six adults killed, reading the names and ages of all of the victims.

    T.J. Lane’s attorney wants family comments kept out of trial
    The attorney for an 18-year-old charged in the Chardon High School shooting earlier this year wants comments made by the suspect's family kept out of his trial. The attorney for T.J. Lane says his family members had private conversations in a police station and didn't know they were being recorded. Prosecutors believe there is no privacy in a police interview room and that they should be allowed to use the statements at trial. A judge will hear arguments over the issue at a hearing on Wednesday. Investigators say Lane admitted shooting at students last February, killing three, but couldn't say why. He’s pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

    Public meetings set to begin on Cleveland Schools plan
    Public meetings begin this week on Cleveland schools’ four-year transformation plan. CEO Eric Gordon presented the 33-page plan to the school board recently and said he wants full community involvement in the effort to improve academic performance, fueled by the district’s 15-mill levy that voters approved last month. The first meeting is Wednesday at the John Adams Campus. A draft of the plan is posted on the district’s website.

    RTA driver dead after crash
    A bus driver for the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority has died after a crash in University Heights. Police say 53-year-old Christopher Battle was driving a bus Sunday afternoon when it ran onto a sidewalk and went across a road. Police are awaiting autopsy results…they say it may have been a medical issue that caused Battle to crash. Three others were injured. 

    Hearing today for condemned inmate who says he’s too fat to be executed
    A judge is ready to hear arguments in the case of a condemned inmate from Lorain who weighs around 450 pounds and says he's too fat to be executed humanely. Ronald Post claims he could suffer a "torturous and lingering death" because executioners will have a hard time finding a vein for the lethal chemical used by Ohio. Federal judge Gregory Frost plans a hearing today in Columbus. The Ohio Parole Board recommended last week that Gov. Kasich grant clemency in Post’s case based on claims raising doubts about his legal representation, not because of the obesity issue. Governor Kasich will make the final decision.

    Ohio’s Electoral College members meeting today
    Members of the Electoral College that formalizes America's presidential results are gathering in Ohio and elsewhere. Electors are set to convene at noon today at the Statehouse. They will deliver the battleground state's 18 electoral votes to Democratic President Barack Obama.

    3.5 million Ohioans hitting the road for the holidays
    AAA says around 3.5 million Ohioans plan to travel 50 miles or more from home during the holiday season. The auto club says that's an increase nearly 2 percent over last year. This year the holiday travel period spans 11 days — from Dec. 22 to Jan. 1.  Meanwhile, gas prices continue to drop. The average today is $3.14 in today’s survey, down 35 cents from this time last month. Some areas have dropped below $3.00.  Gas prices are expected to fall throughout the rest of December, thanks to lower demand and higher inventories.

    Browns fall to Redskins
    The Browns’ winning streak came to end Sunday when the team lost to the Washington Redskins 38-21. Trent Richardson’s two touchdowns broke the record for most touchdowns by a Browns rookie. But a strong outing by Redskins backup quarterback Kirk Cousins sealed the Browns’ fate in their last home game of the year. They will play Peyton Manning and the Broncos on the road in Denver next week.

     

     

     

     

     

     

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