Morning Headlines: 2 Arrested in Homeland Security Shooting; Officials Seize 40 Pounds of Fentanyl

Oct 31, 2019

Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, Oct. 31:

  • 2 arrested in Cleveland Homeland Security shooting;
  • Officials seize 40 pounds of fentanyl;
  • Congress to vote on whether to continue impeachment inquiry;
  • DeWine delays two more executions;
  • 22-year-old Ohio soldier to be laid to rest;
  • Summit County medical marijuana dispensary to open next month;
  • U.S. Census Bureau needs 4,000 Summit County workers;
  • FirstEnergy signs lease to remain in Akron;
  • Diebold Nixdorf reports low earnings in third quarter;
  • Ohio National Guard 178th Wing to get first female commander;

2 arrested in Cleveland Homeland Security shooting
Authorities said no one was injured when Homeland Security agents opened fire during a human trafficking investigation in Cleveland. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) said two people were arrested following the Wednesday morning shooting in which a suspect opened fire on Homeland Security Investigations special agents. The agents were serving a federal search warrant at the time. ICE said the Ohio Attorney General's Human Trafficking Task Force and the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Office are helping Homeland Security in an ongoing human trafficking investigation.

Officials seize 40 pounds of fentanyl
Federal and state officials in Dayton said they seized more than 40 pounds fentanyl — an amount so large, it could kill the state's entire population. According to multiple news outlets, three Dayton men — Shamar Davis, Anthony Franklin and Grady Jackson — are facing possession and firearm charges. It's suspected that around 1,500 grams of methamphetamine and 500 grams of heroin were also seized in the bust. The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office said the drugs were confiscated last week.

Congress to vote on whether to continue impeachment inquiry
The vote Thursday in Congress will put House members on record whether they want the impeachment proceedings to move forward. It will likely fall along party lines, but there could be outliers. The Columbus Dispatch reports responses from Ohio Republicans range from outrage toward Democrats to no comment. Rep. Jim Jordan has attacked the impeachment inquiry, calling it a sham. Cincinnati Republican Steve Chabot called it a “partisan witch hunt.” Meanwhile, Steve Stivers of Suburban Columbus would not tell the Dispatch how he intends to vote, but he has criticized the president’s actions in Syria and other policies. Geauga County Republican Dave Joyce did not indicate how he would vote. WKSU will have NPR’s special coverage of the House vote starting at 9 a.m. Thursday morning.

Editor's note:  In its reporting on this story, the Columbus Dispatch originally attributed a comment to Cong. Joyce's spokeswoman indicating he never reveals how he will vote. His spokeswoman tells WKSU this comment was made off the record and was taken out of context.

DeWine delays two more executions
Gov. Mike DeWine has delayed two more state executions, citing Ohio's continuing struggles to find supplies of lethal injection drugs. James Galen Hanna was scheduled to die Dec. 11 for the murder of his cellmate in 1997. On Wednesday, DeWine moved his execution date to July 16. Kareem Jackson was sentenced to death for two slayings in 1997. His execution date was moved to Sept. 16. DeWine cited Ohio's difficulty finding pharmaceutical suppliers willing to provide drugs to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction "without harming other Ohioans." The governor said in July that the state fears it could be cut off from drugs needed for medical purposes if their makers learn they're also being used for executions.

22-year-old Ohio soldier to be laid to rest
A 22-year-old soldier killed during a training exercise will be laid to rest in Ohio. The body of U.S Army Sgt. Thomas Cole Walker was returned to Cleveland on Tuesday and escorted to his hometown of Conneaut by law enforcement and the Ohio Patriot Guard Riders. The Army said Walker was posthumously promoted from the rank of corporal to sergeant. Walker and two other soldiers were killed Oct. 20 at Fort Stewart, Georgia, when the armored vehicle they were in plummeted from a bridge and landed upside down in the water. The funeral is Saturday at New Leaf United Methodist Church in Conneaut.

Summit County medical marijuana dispensary to open next month
Summit County's first medical marijuana dispensary is set to open next month in downtown Akron. The Beacon Journal reports the Ohio Board of Pharmacy has given final approval to the store called "The Botanist" operated by Greenleaf Apothecaries, which runs four other dispensaries across the state. The store is scheduled to open the second week of November. The state has approved 43 of 56 dispensaries statewide.

U.S. Census Bureau needs 4,000 Summit County workers
The U.S. Census Bureau said it needs around 4,000 workers in Summit County alone to help staff the 2020 headcount. The 2020 census will mark the first time residents will be able to respond online. Still, the bureau is expected to start hiring soon for the army of census takers needed to count hard-to-reach populations across the region. The temporary jobs pay up to $16 per hour depending on location.

FirstEnergy signs lease to remain in Akron
Akron-based FirstEnergy is staying put. In a press release, the company announced it’s signed a 10-year extension on the lease of its downtown headquarters. The company’s history in Akron reaches back more than 100 years, to Ohio Edison and its predecessor Northern Ohio Traction & Light. FirstEnergy’s split with its generation arm, FirstEnergy Solutions, is expected later this year as that company emerges from bankruptcy. Around a third of FirstEnergy’s 2,000 employees work out of the downtown office.

Diebold Nixdorf reports low earnings in third quarter
Diebold Nixdorf is blaming the strong dollar for the recent drop in revenue. The Green-based company reported a third quarter loss of nearly $36 million in a conference call this week. Overall revenue is down 3.6 % from last year. CEO Gerrard Schmid said the exchange rate between the U.S. dollar and some foreign currencies hurt revenues. He said the ATM maker has nearly completed a $400 million cost cutting program. Diebold Nixdorf cut its projected revenue for the year by around 2% with sales lagging in Europe.

Ohio National Guard 178th Wing to get first female commander
The 178th Wing of the Ohio Air National Guard is set to get its first female commander. Col. Kimberly Fitzgerald is scheduled to assume duties as commander from Col. Gregg Hesterman during a ceremony Sunday at the Springfield Air National Guard Base. Fitzgerald is currently vice commander of the 178th Wing. She has 26 years of service including a total of more than 4,000 flight hours. She transferred to the 178th Wing in 2011. Hesterman will serve as the director of staff for the Ohio National Guard.