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WMOH Updates Archives for 2016-05

Hamilton Gas Customers Avoid Sales Tax Increase

(Columbus)--Hamilton City utility customers will not see an increase in their natural gas bills after the state legislature passed HB 390, State Representative Wes Retherford's bill stopping the collection of the sales tax. Retherford reminded lawmakers they wouldn't be back until November, so they needed to pass the bill Wednesday. Customers would have seen a 10% increase on their gas bills. The legislation now goes to Governor Kasich's desk for his signature.

Another Skimmer Found in Butler County

(Fairfield)--Another credit card skimmer has been found at a Butler County gas station. The device was discovered during a routine inspection by the Butler County Auditor's Office at the Marathon on the 6100 block of Dixie Highway in Fairfield. It's the 4th skimmer found in the County over the past 6 months. Auditor Roger Reynolds hosted a skimmer summit for local gas station owners and other stakeholders last week. The Following tips are courtesy of the Butler County Auditor's Office:


Tips for Stations

* Activity at gas stations should be closely and securely monitored by station managers and attendants.

* Gas pumps should be opened up and the internal mechanisms examined regularly by station staff.

* The most effective way to stop these scams is to install better, more secure locks on every pump. Better locks will prohibit unauthorized access to a gas pump’s interior components.


Tips for Consumers

* NEVER use a debit card when paying for gas at the pump. Thieves can steal PIN numbers.

* Report any unusual activity or anything that looks out of place.

* Monitor monthly bank and credit card statements for fraudulent charges.

* Use cash to pay for purchases whenever possible.

* If you believe you have been a victim of a skimmer scam, notify local law enforcement and your credit card issuer immediately.


Rumpke Spring Cleanup Saturday For West Siders

(Hamilton)--If you're looking to do some spring cleaning, the City of Hamilton is teaming up with Rumpke the next couple of weeks to offer a cleanup day. Saturday will be cleanup day for west side residents and next Saturday is for the east side. City Manager Joshua Smith says you need to have your items out on the curb Friday Night. He says Rumpke will collect large furniture, and other items left by the curb. According to a city news release, there are limitations.


The following items will not be collected by Rumpke during the city-wide cleanup:
  • Overloaded and/or wet boxes.
  • Barrels or drums
  • Waste oil
  • Construction and/or remodeling materials
  • Electronic appliances
  • Items containing chlorofluorocarbons (any item with a coolant in it, refrigerators, freezers, microwaves, etc.)
  • Tires
  • Batteries
  • Paint
  • Hazardous materials
  • Yard Waste
  • Weekly household garbage
    • Clearing out debris and clutter and placing in a can or cart at the curb is permissible, but please put your normal household garbage at the curb on your regular collection day.


Council Approves Knightsbridge Development

(Hamilton)--Hamilton City Council has approved plans for a 5,900 square foot development at the northwest corner of Central Avenue and Knightsbridge Drive. Owner Frank Pfirman says he's looking to build four businesses, one of which would include a drive-thru. Pfirman says the project is needed to serve a growing workforce in the area, including Barclaycard, Vora Tech, and Miami University's Hamilton campus.  Pfirman says they will have a better idea what businesses would move into the complex after a meeting next month. The vote to approve the development was unanimous. City Manager Joshua Smith thought it might be better to move the building closer to the curb and move parking to the side and back, but Pfirman says the type of businesses involved work better with up front parking.

Skimmer Summit Held In Butler County

(Hamilton)--Butler County Auditor Roger Reynolds hosted a credit card skimmer summit last week to educate gas station owners and other retailers about the growing problem. Skimmers are placed on gas pumps and ATM machines by scam artists looking to steal credit card information. Montgomery County Auditor Karl Keith told the crowd Ohio has been hit hard by the skimmers over the past six months.Keith says gas station owners are becoming more aware of the problem, making daily inspections of their gas pumps.

Dad Charged In Scalding Case

(Lebanon)--A Warren County Grand Jury has indicted the father of 4 year old Austin Cooper. Robert Ritchie is charged with Involuntary Manslaughter and Child Endangering. He allegedly failed to get medical help for Austin after his wife Anna put the child in scalding water, according to Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell (pictured). The boy later died of his injuries. Anna Ritchie is already jailed on an array of charges, including murder.

Sheriff Deploying Drone

(Hamilton)--The Butler County Sheriff's Office will add another weapon to it's aviation fleet. Prosecutor Mike Gmoser (pictured) is cutting through some FAA red tape to get approval for a drone. He says there will be a number of uses, including missing person and criminal searches, as well as documenting crime and accident scenes. Gmoser says county commissioners had to agree to become the official operators of the drone, although the rotorcraft will be controlled by the sheriff's helicopter pilots.

Tennessee Murder Suspect Arrested in Hamilton

A Sevier County, Tennessee man was arrested by a fugitive apprehension team in Hamilton Monday. 68 year old Nicholas Taylor was taken into custody by U.S. Marshals and the Butler County Sheriff's Office at an address on Douglas Lane, a source familiar with the arrest told WMOH. Taylor was wanted for the 2014 murder of his girlfriend, 72 year old Susan Kokenge. Taylor is awaiting an extradition hearing in the Butler County Jail.

Pair Charged With Bloody Home Invasion

Two men are facing a laundry list of charges after a home invasion robbery in Oxford Township early Monday. 46 year old Fred Lee Gaston and 29 year old Ryan Isaacs are accused of entering a home on Morning Sun Road, and holding a knife to the neck of a 48 year old woman. The victim's face was cut several times during the attack. The pair fled the home with several items, but were caught by Hamilton police a short while later, and the items were recovered. The pair are due to appear in Area One Court on Friday.

Click It Or Ticket Campaign Begins

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is teaming up with local law enforcement agencies to kick off the Click It or Ticket campaign. Starting May 23rd and running through June 5th, officers will step up enforcement of traffic laws, and will take a zero tolerance policy when it comes to seat belt usage. Lt. Clint Arnold, the commander of the patrol's Hamilton post, says 13 of the 29 fatalities reported in Butler County last year were not using seat belts.

Explosion Destroys North End Home

Hamilton firefighters are investigating the cause of an explosion that destroyed a North End home Friday afternoon. The blast blew open the side of the red brick home at Oak & Hudson Streets just before 2:30pm Friday. A man and woman were transported to the hospital for apparent non life threatening injuries. A fire that broke out after the explosion caused so much damage, the house had to be razed after the flames were extinguished. The man told investigators he was inside the darkened home when he flicked open a cigarette lighter, triggering the massive explosion.

Tri-Health Announces Liberty Township Outpatient Center

Eastern Butler County is getting another medical facility after Tri-Health announced plans for an ambulatory care center at the corner of Liberty Way and Cox Road in Liberty Township. The organization announced a deal to purchase 33 acres of land on the 8000 block of Liberty Way. Details about the new care center will be announced at a later date. The group is partnering with Miller-Valentine developers on the project, and they hope to close on the land by early 2017.

Barclaycard Opens Hamilton Call Center

(Hamilton)--Ohio's two U.S. Senators, Lieutenant Governor, and the President of the Ohio Senate all came to Hamilton Monday to help cut the ribbon on the new Barclaycard call center at the Vora Tech center in Knightsbridge. The company plans to employ 250 people by the end of 2016, and 1,500 when the building is fully operational.

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown congratulated the company on their investment and for providing higher wages and benefits than similar call center jobs.

Murder Suspect Arrested

(Hamilton)--Hamilton police have arrested a man charged in connection with the shooting death of a man back in December.

33 year old Jamell Cavanaugh was indicted on charges of Murder and Weapons Under Disability for the shooting death of 29 year old Billy Joe Sickler at 423 East Avenue on December 16th. Cavanaugh is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday afternoon in front of Judge Keith Spaeth.


Kinner Sentenced In Child Abuse Case

(Hamilton)--A Madison Township woman who admitted to doing nothing to stop her boyfriend from allegedly killing her 2 year old daughter was sentenced to 11 years in prison Thursday in Butler County Common Pleas Court. Judge Keith Spaeth also ordered five years probation when Rebekah Kinner is released from prison. Kinner's boyfriend, Bradley Young, is facing murder charges in the beating death of 2 year old Kinsley Kinner. Family members of Kinner testified that she was a good mother, but was in a bad situation. Kinner tearfully told the judge she loved her daughter and lost everything that was important to her when Kinsley died.


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