Ohio News Briefs

Ohio sheriff: Suspect in slayings confessed to other killing

ASHLAND, Ohio (AP) — A sheriff in Ohio says a man charged last week with killing two women and kidnapping another also has confessed to killing a woman about 10 years ago.

The sheriff in Marion County said Monday that 40-year-old Shawn Grate told investigators he killed a woman selling magazines sometime between 2003 and 2005.

The sheriff says the body of the unidentified woman was found in 2007 near Marion. That’s about 50 miles southeast of Ashland, where Grate was arrested last week after a woman called 911 and said she was being held inside a home.

Police then found the remains of two other women. Authorities say Grate later led them to a third body in Richland County.

Grate on Monday appeared in a video bond hearing. His attorney entered not-guilty pleas.

Ohio woman gets 18 years to life in son’s fatal beating

HAMILTON, Ohio (AP) — A woman who pleaded guilty in the fatal beating of her 5-year-old son at an Ohio motel has been sentenced to 18 years to life in prison.

A Butler County judge on Monday sentenced 26-year-old Theresa Hawkins-Stephens, who was one of three women charged after the April beating. She had pleaded guilty to charges of murder and child endangering. A message left for her attorney Monday wasn’t immediately returned.

Alexander Stephens died from his injuries after police found him and his injured 6-year-old brother in Middletown.

Police say Hawkins-Stephens and Rachel Bostian tied Alexander up for nearly a day and severely beat him. Bostian was sentenced earlier to 18 years to life after pleading guilty to murder and child endangering.

Bostian’s mother was sentenced to three years for obstructing justice.

Ohio gas prices up to start the workweek

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Gas prices in Ohio are up compared with last week, while slightly down from the average price reported a month ago.

The average price for a gallon of regular gas in Ohio was $2.17 in Monday’s survey from auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. That’s an increase from $2.07 a week ago. The average price in Ohio at this time last month was $2.19 and $2.31 at this time a year ago.

The survey showed Ohio’s average price lower than the average for the nation. The national average of about $2.21 on Monday was up from $2.18 a week ago and from $2.14 at the same time last month. The average national price a year ago was $2.30.

Horse euthanized after contracting West Nile in Ohio

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (AP) — Ohio officials say a horse was put down after contracting West Nile virus in the state’s first confirmed equestrian case this year.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture says a 7-year-old horse in Tuscarawas County in eastern Ohio was diagnosed on Sept. 12. The horse was euthanized for symptoms including shaking, agitation and thrashing.

The virus is transmitted to horses through bites from infected mosquitoes. Clinical signs can include flu-like symptoms, drowsiness and changes in mentality.

The department says Ohio has reported three positive cases in horses in each of the last few years.

Police: Officer fatally shoots man who pulled assault rifle

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Police say an officer fatally shot a man in Ohio after he pulled an assault rifle from his car.

Police say officers had been responding to an apartment complex Sunday afternoon in Akron after a caller said his 61-year-old neighbor had slammed the caller’s arm in a car door during an argument.

Police say the man reached for an assault rifle as the officers approached him in a parking lot behind the building. They say one officer shot several times and hit the man when he ignored orders to stop.

The man was declared dead at a hospital. He isn’t being publicly identified until his family can be notified.

The officer, who wasn’t immediately identified, has been placed on paid administrative leave.

The shooting remains under investigation.

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