Morning Headlines: ICE Raids Fresh Mark in Stark, Columbiana; $12M Housing Project Planned in Akron

Jun 20, 2018

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, June 20:

  • Fresh Mark facilities raided in Stark, Columbiana counties;
  • Akron commission approves $12M housing development;
  • Two former Ohio U.S. attorneys sign letter calling for an end to immigration policy;
  • Nexus Pipeline causes roadway collapse in Summit County;
  • Cuyahoga County animal shelter awaits test results on dog deaths; 
  • OSU shuts down sexual civility and empowerment unit;
  • Stark County businessman pleads guilty to shipping waste without a permit;
  • North Canton businessman launches group to retaliate against two candidates; 
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden to campaign for Richard Cordray;
  • ODOT to close section of Akron's South Main Street this weekend;
  • American Greetings announces layoffs;
  • Fire destroys two central Ohio barns;

ICE raids Fresh Mark facilities in Stark, Columbiana counties

Immigration enforcement agents raided four Fresh Mark facilities in Stark and Columbiana counties yesterday. About 100 workers were arrested at a Salem facility, while it's unknown if there were any arrests at the Canton and two Massillon plants. ICE says the raid follows a year-long investigation into whether the meat supplier knowingly hired undocumented workers. ICE officials say the number arrests is likely to climb after the investigation is concluded. Those arrested would be taken to detention centers in Michigan and Ohio, while some might be deported immediately.

Akron awards construction of $12M housing development

Akron's Planning Commission has awarded construction of a $12 million housing development in an effort to increase the city’s population by 50,000 by 2025. Northeast Ohio builder Knez Homes will build the homes on about seven acres on the city’s west side. Knez is also planning to build homes in the Highland Square neighborhood. 

Two former Ohio attorneys sign letter calling for an end to immigration policy

A group of more than 70 former U.S. attorneys, including two from Ohio, posted a letter on Medium.com calling for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to end the zero-tolerance immigration policy of separating families at the border. The letter, signed by Carole Rendon, former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, and Carter Stewart, former top prosecutor in the southern district, stated that they are “appalled” and that the policy is “inconsistent with the institution” of which they served.  

Nexus Pipeline causes roadway collapse in Summit County

A portion of a roadway in Summit County has collapsed during construction of a natural gas pipeline.  It happened when NEXUS workers were boring a tunnel on South Arlington Rd. The City of Green says the busy thoroughfare will remain closed until Friday between Nimisila and Koons Roads.

Cuyahoga County animal shelter awaits test results on dog deaths

The Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter is still waiting for test results to determine what killed five dogs last month.

Samples of the unknown respiratory illness were sent to state labs which have yet to identify the disease. The dogs were sent from the city kennel to a Valley View dog shelter where they died of the illness. A city spokesperson said the city kennel has revisited their cleaning protocols as a precaution. This includes disinfecting the kennel and the animal control officer’s truck. He says no other dogs have died. The County is keeping a close eye on the dogs currently within their care. The Valley View facility and a shelter in Parma remain closed. Ohio State University says it's shutting down its three-year-old Sexual Civility and Empowerment unit after finding it didn't properly document and report students' sexual assault complaints. The Columbus Dispatch reports some victims were told they were lying or fabricating their stories. Records show some SCE workers also subjected victims to re-traumatizing treatment. The school also says it's asking experts from a law firm to develop a new program.

OSU finds shuts down sesxual civility and empowerment unit

Ohio State University says it's shutting down its three-year-old Sexual Civility and Empowerment unit after finding it didn't properly document and report students' sexual assault complaints. The Columbus Dispatch reports some victims were told they were lying or fabricating their stories. Records show some SCE workers also subjected victims to re-traumatizing treatment. The school also says it's asking experts from a law firm to develop a new program.

Stark County businessman pleads guilty to shipping waste without a permit

A Stark County businessman has pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiring to ship nine million pounds of hazardous waste without a permit. Raymond Williams, along with his company, U.S. Technology Corporation, based in Jackson Township, will be sentenced in September. Williams is now living in Atlanta, Georgia. U.S. Technology made plastic pellets that are used to remove paint from tanks, planes and other equipment on military bases. In 2000, Williams hired a Mississippi company to recycle its powdery waste, but that didn’t happen. So, U.S. Technology and Williams instead shipped it to a location in Missouri without a permit.

North Canton businessman launches group to retaliate against candidates

A North Canton telemarketing company whose Republican owner spent more than a year in prison following a campaign finance probe has organized employees and suppliers in a retaliatory effort to bring down two prominent Democrats.

A memo posted online lays out The Justice Association LLC's strategy for an investigation, lawsuit and ad campaign targeting U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and former U.S. Attorney Steven Dettelbach, the Democratic nominee for attorney general. The month-old association is offering "rewards" of up to $100,000 for any supporting evidence it could use to request a grand jury investigation. The memo says the evidence also could be folded into a potential class-action racketeering lawsuit. Suarez Corporation Industries is behind the effort. Its CEO, Benjamin Suarez, was sentenced to 15 months in prison for witness tampering in a 2014 investigation by Dettelbach's office and the FBI.

Former Vice President Joe Biden to campaign for Richard Cordray

Former Vice President Joe Biden will visit Ohio this month to raise money for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Richard Cordray. Biden will appear June 29 at the Queen City Club in downtown Cincinnati. Biden endorsed Cordray after he won the nomination last month and touted Cordray's work at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, where he was appointed director by President Barack Obama. His race against Republican Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is among those being closely watched nationally.

ODOT to close section of Akron's South Main Street this weekend 

Drivers in Akron should expect delays this weekend. ODOT is closing a section of South Main Street for repairs.  The stretch between Bartges and Thornton will be closed Saturday and Sunday. It’s part of the $84 million project to reconstruct the I-76, Main & Broadway interchange expected to be completed in two years.

American Greetings announces layoffs 

Westlake-based American Greetings has announced a round of layoffs as part of a restructuring plan. The greeting card company isn't saying how many employees were let go at its Creative Studios at Crocker Park, but also says there will likely be more to come. American Greetings earlier this year sold a 60 percent stake to a private New York equity firm. The company employs 1,700 in Westlake.

Fire destroys two central Ohio barns

A fire Tuesday destroyed two barns at a central Ohio hog farm, killing an estimated 5,000 pigs. Intense heat and smoke made it difficult for firefighters to get inside the bars at Straathoff Swine Farm in Wayne Township in Fayette County. One firefighter was treated for an injured arm.