DNA Used to Uncover 70s Serial Killer Who Raped and Strangled College Student in Ohio

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters announced the indictment of Ralph Howell for the rape and murder of Cheryl Thompson in 1978.

Howell was killed in an automobile accident in 1985.

Howell was posthumously indicted for one count of Aggravated Murder, and one count of Rape.

On March 24, 1978, Cheryl Thompson went missing after leaving her home to meet her boyfriend at a bar in Oakley.

On April 8, 1978, Thompson’s body was discovered along the bank of the Little Miami River by an Ohio Department of Natural Resources officer. Thompson’s cause of death was asphyxia caused by strangulation. It was also determined Thompson had been raped.

Physical evidence was collected from Thompson’s body and stored at the Hamilton County Coroner’s Office. However, due to the forensic limitations of the time, the investigation quickly went cold. Loveland police officers and agents at the Bureau of Criminal Investigations never stopped investigating.

This year, the DNA sample taken from Thompson’s body was sent to a third-party genealogy company in hopes of developing a suspect. The results narrowed this DNA sample to a specific family tree. Ralph Howell was included in these results.

Further investigation showed Howell was arrested in 1983 for abduction. In that incident, Howell picked a woman up on the side of the road and offered to drive her home. Once in the vehicle, Howell placed a rope around the victim’s neck and began to strangle her. He told her he wanted to have sex with her. The victim was able to fight Howell off and escape from the vehicle.

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Ohio Supreme Court Suspends Democrat Judge Over ‘Unprecedented’ Behavior

The Ohio Supreme Court has indefinitely suspended a local judge, citing “unprecedented misconduct” that includes falsifying court documents, issuing illegitimate arrest warrants, and donning inappropriate attire in court.

Cleveland Municipal Court Judge Pinkey Carr, a Democrat, was found to exhibit such misconduct that comprise more than 100 incidents over a period of about two years.

The misconduct “encompassed repeated acts of dishonesty; the blatant and systematic disregard of due process, the law, court orders, and local rules; the disrespectful treatment of court staff and litigants; and the abuse of capias warrants and the court’s contempt power,” stated the court’s per curium opinion (pdf). “That misconduct warrants an indefinite suspension from the practice of law.”

Justices agreed with the court’s three-panel Board of Professional Conduct’s assessment that Carr “ruled her courtroom in a reckless and cavalier manner, unrestrained by the law or the court’s rules, without any measure of probity or even common courtesy,” and that she “conducted business in a manner befitting a game show host rather than a judge of the Cleveland Municipal Court.”

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Ohio Voters to Decide If Non-US Citizens Can Vote in Local Elections

Ohio voters are heading to the polls to decide if non-U.S. citizens can vote in state or local elections.

If passed, Issue 2 would change the Ohio Constitution. It proposes that only adult U.S. citizens who legally reside and are registered to vote in Ohio for at least 30 days can cast a ballot in future state and local elections.

The current Ohio Constitution states that “every citizen of the United States, of the age of eighteen years and has been registered to vote for thirty days is entitled to vote at all elections.”

The state constitution does not say that noncitizens cannot vote.

Federal law prohibits noncitizens from casting ballots in federal elections.

A 1917 ruling by the Ohio Supreme Court determined that the state constitution’s home rule, which gives cities control over their local issues, provided municipalities permission to expand voting rights in city elections.

Issue 2 would ensure that a city’s home rule does not circumvent the law that only adult U.S. citizens can cast ballots.

Supporters of Issue 2 believe the amendment will uphold the integrity of citizenship if it becomes law, while opponents claim it is an effort to “restrict voting access.”

At the forefront of Issue 2 is the village of Yellow Springs, which is located east of Dayton in southwest Ohio.

In 2019, village officials passed a referendum allowing residents who were not U.S. citizens to vote in local elections. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose ordered the Greene County Board of Elections not to accept voter registration forms from noncitizens.

The referendum violated the U.S. and Ohio Constitutions, LaRose said. In a press release, he added, “Just when you thought 2020 couldn’t get any weirder, the village of Yellow Springs forces me, as Ohio’s chief elections officer, to restate the obvious – only U.S. citizens may vote.”

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Ohio GOP House candidate has misrepresented military service

Campaigning for a northwestern Ohio congressional seat, Republican J.R. Majewski presents himself as an Air Force combat veteran who deployed to Afghanistan after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, once describing “tough” conditions including a lack of running water that forced him to go more than 40 days without a shower.

Military documents obtained by The Associated Press through a public records request tell a different story.

They indicate Majewski never deployed to Afghanistan but instead completed a six-month stint helping to load planes at an air base in Qatar, a longtime U.S. ally that is a safe distance from the fighting.

Majewski’s account of his time in the military is just one aspect of his biography that is suspect. His post-military career has been defined by exaggerations, conspiracy theories, talk of violent action against the U.S. government and occasional financial duress.

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New Video Shows Cops Casually Walk Into Unarmed Man’s Home, Wake Him Up, Execute Him

Last week, TFTP reported on disturbing body camera footage out of Columbus, Ohio, released as part of a push for transparency in the city. The footage showed police enter the apartment of 20-year-old Donovan Lewis who was undressed, in bed, and was attempting to raise his hands when he received a fatal, taxpayer-funded 9mm round to the chest.

The video went underreported in the media for several days and now, new video has been released showing the complete and callous disregard for life by officer Ricky Anderson as he casually executed Lewis in his own bed.

Despite the warrant for his arrest, Lewis was innocent until proven guilty. Unfortunately, he was denied that right.

For some reason, Columbus police thought it was a good idea to serve an arrest warrant at 2:30 a.m. at Lewis’ apartment. Footage shows multiple officers outside Lewis’ door knocking for several minutes before one of the man’s roommates opens the door. Moments later, officers would open the door to Lewis’ bedroom and execute him.

“We need to get rid of middle of the night arrest warrants unless there’s a dangerous emergent circumstance,” said the family’s attorney, Rex Elliot. “We need to have police officers who are trained to come into these communities that understand these communities.”

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An 8-Year-Old Ohio Girl’s Lemonade Stand Was Shut Down By Police After Nearby Food Festival Complained

An eight year old girl had her lemonade stand shutdown by police after a nearby food festival filed a complaint about her.

The police officer who had to shut her down felt so bad that he gave her the $20 necessary to get a permit.

Asa Baker was selling lemonade outside her father’s business when the Alliance, Ohio Rib and Food Festival called the police to complain.

“Well, they were really sad that they had to shut me down but they gave me $20 to try and pay for it,” Baker told local station WJW-TV.

Katrina Moore, Asa’s mother, told the station that the police officer did the right thing — even though he didn’t want to do it.

“I could definitely tell he did not want to shut her down, but, I mean, you get a call, he has to do it. He definitely did the right thing, you know, in the situation he was put in,” the mother said. “Later that day, I made a (social media) post in appreciation for the officer that gave her the money for shutting it down. You know, as unfortunate as it was, I still was very grateful that he was at least able to give her $20.”

“I understand the rules, I understand why she got shut down. It’s just a sad, sad situation,” Moore told the station.

Kyle Clark, Asa’s Dad, said that he did not know that children need a permit to operate a lemonade stand.

“We looked it up and it was pretty much anywhere in Ohio. You have to have a license and I’ve never heard of that,” Clark said.

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Cops Dump Over 90 Rounds Into Fleeing Man Over Stop for ‘Traffic Equipment Violation’

Before he was filled with taxpayer funded bullets on Monday, Jayland Walker, 25, was a standout wrestler at Buchtel High School, where he graduated in 2015. According to his family he worked for Amazon then took a job driving for DoorDash and was set to get married. All of this is over now, however, after multiple officers decided to dump more than a dozen rounds each into Walkers body after he fled a traffic stop for a simple violation.

Walker’s family says their son was engaged to his fiancé, Jaymeisha Beasley, who was tragically struck by a hit and run driver last month who has yet to be found. The families of the couple are now jointly grieving their tragic losses, according to the Akron Beacon Journal.

According to Bobby DiCello, the lead attorney for the Walker family, prior to fleeing the traffic stop on Monday night, Walker had no criminal record.

“Jayland, not one time in his life, and you can search this city, this state and this country— never offended or bothered a soul. And how these events took place leaves us with many, many questions,” said DiCello at a press conference on Thursday. “Our job, by doing this press conference, is to remind the police department for the city of Akron that we are here for accountability.”

According to police, an officer attempted to pull over Walker around 12:30 a.m. on Monday for a “traffic equipment violation” but for some reason he refused to stop. A chase ensued and would last four and a half minutes. Video from traffic cameras show that in this short time, the single cruiser following Walker multiplied into a whopping 10 cruisers.

Police would claim that Walker fired a gun from his vehicle during the pursuit. Captain Dave Laughlin, of the Akron Police Department, told the press that officers didn’t see a weapon but heard a gunshot or multiple gunshots from the car on the entrance ramp of Route 8.

Police claim Walker then came to a stop before exiting the vehicle and fleeing on foot. That’s when he was surrounded by cops and executed.

“Actions by the suspect caused the officers to perceive he posed a deadly threat to them. In response to this threat, officers discharged their firearms, striking the suspect,” the police statement said.

Police claim to have found a gun in Walker’s vehicle but have made no mention as to whether or not he was armed when 8 officers all began shooting him like a firing squad. According to photos obtained by the attorneys, after Walker was filled with holes, police then handcuffed his dead body and waited for the medical examiner to arrive to pronounce him deceased.

“We know that no police officer ever wants to discharge their service weapon in the line of duty,” the mayor and chief said in a joint statement. “And anytime they must, it’s a dark day for our city, for the families of those involved, as well as for the officers.”

Clearly, however, this was not the case. Officer who don’t want to fire their weapons won’t dump 90 rounds into a person who was likely unarmed.

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Utility Accused of Disproportionately Disconnecting Service in Low-Income Neighborhoods “to preserve the grid”

Columbus civic leaders continued to seek answers Thursday about how AEP decided which neighborhoods to cut power to this week and whether appropriate steps were taken to notify customers in advance of the outages.

The NAACP Columbus chapter again questioned AEP Thursday, calling for additional answers as to how the utility determines areas that will be without service, and whether AEP notified residents, governments and social service agencies prior to the shutdown. The questions followed statements from NAACP leaders Wednesday raising concerns that areas in Columbus affected by the outage included many low-income and minority neighborhoods.

“The NAACP’s concern is that these outages will add to the growing list of health, environmental and crime rates in these communities,” the NAACP said in a statement Thursday.  “We also need to know what this community can expect moving forward in these dog days of summer.”

City of Columbus officials also contacted AEP about the outages and the direct impact on those poorer neighborhoods, city spokeswoman Melanie Crabill said Thursday.

“We asked AEP the same question because we were being asked by residents,” Crabill said. “AEP assured us that they based load shedding on circuit locations, not neighborhoods.”

Ohio Democratic lawmakers from the Columbus area also sought answers from AEP Thursday, writing in a letter that the utility has an obligation to provide customers access to services and to communicate planned outages “to limit the human and financial costs shouldered by families, cities and people with medical needs.”

The letter included a list of questions for AEP and was signed by Democratic state representatives from Franklin County, including Kristin Boggs, Rich Brown, Latyna Humphrey, Dontavius Jarrells, David Leland, Mary Lightbody, Beth Liston, Adam Miller, and Allison Russo.

“We find it troubling that AEP has no issue with customer notifications when bills are due, but when customers are faced with historic heat, limited resources and great needs, there seems to be limited or no communication about planned outages that impact the health, safety and welfare of customers,” the lawmakers wrote.

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Ohio School Board President Resigns for Alleged Attempt to Meet 11-Year-Old Girl for Sex

The head of a public school board in Ohio resigned on Sunday after a video posted online showed him being confronted and eventually arrested by police in Indiana for an alleged child sex crime.

“A video posted Saturday evening on YouTube shows John Gray, Goshen Local Schools board president, being handcuffed by law enforcement in Indiana. The content of the video is deeply disturbing to our entire school district and Goshen Local School community,” the district said in a statement on its website.

The 83-minute video, titled “60 Year old President of Goshen OH school board, meeting an 11 y/o,” was uploaded to YouTube Saturday night by a group called “Predator Catchers Indianapolis” (PCI). The group describes themselves as volunteers who work to expose predators and protect children.

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Ohio woman with stage 4 liver disease denied lifesaving transplant surgery over vax requirement

An Ohio woman was denied a lifesaving liver transplant due to her not being vaccinated against the coronavirus.

“I don’t think they do care,” Michelle Vitullo told WJW, after the Cleveland Clinic indefinitely cancelled her liver transplant surgery. “I feel bad because my grandkids, they say, ‘Grandma, we’re praying for you to get better.’ It breaks my heart because now I have to tell them I may not get better.”

Michelle has been battling stage 4 liver disease for years and had been receiving care from doctors at the Cleveland Clinic, the outlet reported. She and her husband of 47 years, Jim Vitullo, say they made sweeping changes to their lives in order for Michelle to receive the care.  

“They had us sign an agreement that we would live within one hour of the Cleveland Clinic, I had to quit my job because of all the visits, ended up sleeping literally hundreds of days in my car in the carport there because of the expense,”  Jim recounted.

After extensive testing, they found that their daughter, Angela Green, was a match to Michelle, which elated the family. 

Michelle’s health was stabilized and a surgery date for the end of September was set. But that all soon changed.  

“We were told to get ready,” Green told WJW. “Then we get the news we were taken off the list and we can’t do it without the vaccine and it was heartbreaking.”

The entire family is against getting the vaccine, citing religious reasons and previous health problems. 

“We’ve heard of adverse reactions like blood clotting and heart problems,” added Angela,  “Those are not supposed to happen from a vaccine and we don’t feel comfortable taking on that many risks.”

“To us, it’s a big mistake. It’s against our beliefs,” Jim added.

Two of the Cleveland area’s largest hospital systems, the Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals, require patients be vaccinated against the virus ahead of an organ transplant, WJW previously reported

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