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LOCAL NEWS POWERED BY FIRST BANK RICHMOND

ACCUSED MURDERER HAS HISTORY OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

(Richmond, IN)--There was no bond Monday morning for Vincent Hoffman.  The 24-year-old was arrested for murder on Saturday and remains in the Wayne County Jail pending an initial hearing.  Hoffman is accused of shooting and killing his wife, 34-year-old Jessica Hoffman.  She was found Friday afternoon on Hickory Drive in Richmond with two gunshot wounds to the chest.  Evidence in the case was located in the Dayton suburb of Riverside and along I-70 in Wayne County.  Investigators with the Richmond Police Department indicated that Jessica had recently separated from Vincent Hoffman due to what was described as a poor domestic relationship.  According to his social media page, the two had been married for less than three months.  Vincent Hoffman had a criminal history that included an arrest three years ago for criminal recklessness and domestic battery with a deadly weapon.  That stemmed from an incident in which Hoffman beat a female outside the Dollar General in Centerville with a young child in the car.  Most of the charges in that case were dropped as part of a plea deal that resulted in a year-long prison sentence.


WAYNE COUNTY COVID-19 CASES MORE THAN DOUBLE IN A WEEK

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County has just had its highest Monday-to-Monday Covid-19 case count since the last full week of September.  There have been 296 cases reported since last Monday.  That’s well more than twice the total number of cases from the week before.  The 296 cases push Wayne County over the 12,000-case threshold since Covid-19 began.  There were also 45 Covid-19 patients at Reid Health Monday morning.  That’s the highest Monday total since October 11.  82% of patients currently at Reid are unvaccinated.


MAN SENTENCED TO 22 YEARS FOR MAKING VIDEOS OF GIRLS IN SHOWER

(Connersville, IN)--A Whitewater Valley man has been sentenced to a total of 22 years in prison.  A total of 26 felony charges were first filed against Travis Swiderek four years ago.  Swiderek put a hidden camera in his bathroom to make video recordings of girls showering in his home.  More photos, including of some girls under the age of 12, were found on a thumb drive.  Swiderek will also have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.


REID HEALTH PAUSES VACCINATION MANDATE

(Richmond, IN)--Reid Health has announced it has paused its efforts surrounding a vaccine mandate for its staff after a federal judge brought a temporary halt to the vaccine mandate issued under the direction of the Biden Administration, according to our news partners at WHIO-TV.  A prepared statement indicated that Reid "is very pleased with the news of the temporary stay on the federal vaccine mandate.  While the organization has actively encouraged employees to be vaccinated, it has also maintained the choice should a personal one based on accurate, verified information about the vaccines."  The deadline to get the first dose of the vaccine for employees was to have been this coming Monday.


CENTERVILLE SCHOOL LEADERS INVESTIGATE THREAT

(Centerville, IN)--Notification was sent to Centerville school parents Thursday about a threat.  Centerville High School leaders were contacted around the start of school Thursday about a threat that was made by phone to two high school students.  Law enforcement was contacted and worked to try to determine who made the threat.  Extra law enforcement was present at Thursday night’s basketball game.  There will also be increased security at school Friday.


VISTEON BUILDING SELLS TO MILWAUKEE FIRM

(Connersville, IN)--A Milwaukee real estate investment firm called “Phoenix” has purchased the former Visteon building in Connersville.  The 1.7 million square foot building was first built as part of Philco and Ford back in 1953.  Visteon left in 2007.  For the last eight years, about a third of the building has been occupied by a cabinet manufacturer.  Phoenix has not announced specific plans for the building, but said that they would "renovate the property in a first-class manner and restore it to greatness."  Details of the deal were not disclosed.


RHS TO TAKE EXTRA SECURITY MEASURES FOLLOWING TWO FIGHTS

(Richmond, IN)--Richmond High School indicated Wednesday that extra security measures are being put into place following Tuesday night’s fight that broke out in the stands of the girls game against Rushville.  RHS also added in a prepared statement that four people were arrested.  There is no indication that anyone was booked into jail, meaning they cannot be identified.  It was the second time in three weeks that off-the-court fights in the Tiernan Center brought girls games to a halt.  RHS said there’s no indication that the incidents are connected.  Rushville’s athletic director refused to say Wednesday if that team would return to make the game up.  The next RHS girls home game is this coming Tuesday night against Franklin County.


EAST MAIN TO CLOSE IN TWO SPOTS BEGINNING MONDAY

(Richmond, IN)--Here’s more on the closure of a block of East Main Street in Richmond that Kicks 96 and 101.7 The Point was first to report early this week.  The closure of East Main between 9th and 10th Street is now set to begin this coming Monday to allow for demolition of a building in that block.  On Thursday, the Board of Public Works will hear a request to close both East Main and North 12th to allow for demolition of the Bradford Place Apartment Building.  That project is also expected to begin this coming Monday and should last for two weeks.


SEMI CRASH CLOSES EASTBOUND I-70

(Preble County, OH)--Eastbound I-70 was shut down for several hours in Preble County early Thursday morning following a fiery crash involving two semis.  It happened at just before 1 o’clock Thursday morning about four miles into Ohio near the Oxford-Gettysburg Road overpass.  One of the semis went onto its side and burst into flames.  There were no reports of any injury.  Eastbound 70 was closed through about 4:30 Thursday morning.  Traffic had backed up to the state line.


FOR 2nd TIME THIS SEASON, FIGHT DISRUPTS RHS GIRLS BASKETBALL GAME

(Richmond, IN)--For the second time already this season, a fight in the stands at a Richmond High School girls basketball game brought the game to a halt.  It was early in Tuesday night’s game against Rushville when a fight involving multiple adults broke out in the stands.  Witnesses indicated one adult female went tumbling down the steps of the Tiernan Center bleachers.  Some adults rushed into the stands when they noticed a fight had broken out.  The court was cleared and the game ended.  There is no record that any adults were booked into jail as a result.  RHS has not commented on Tuesday night’s incident.


BLOCK OF EAST MAIN TO CLOSE FOR A MONTH

(Richmond, IN)--A block of East Main Street in Richmond will have to be closed for an entire month to remove a dilapidated building.  The city announced Monday that East Main will close between 9th and 10th Street to allow for demolition of the building at 916 and 918 East Main.  That’s close to what was once Kessler’s Sporting Goods.  That building was recently declared unsafe and beyond repair.  An emergency demolition was then ordered.  Monday’s release from the city does not say when the closure will begin.


FORMER TROOPER SENT TO PRISON

(Eaton, OH)--A Preble County man who is also a former Ohio Highway Patrol trooper was finally hauled off to prison Monday.  47-year-old Christopher Ward had been given a three-year sentence last May for sexually battering multiple women and girls, including some while he was working in uniform as a trooper.  "It really affected me in my life and it still affects me.  It's always in the back of my mind," said  Here is one of Ward's victims).  Ward was allowed to remain out of prison for six months during the appeal process, but that ended Monday.  Ward’s attorney filed a motion for a new trial Monday just before Ward was taken away.


MAN WHO DIED IN PORCH COLLAPSE WAS DELIVERING PIZZA

(Connersville, IN)--More details have been released about that fatal porch collapse in Connersville that Kicks 96 and 101.7 The Point reported exclusively Monday morning.  Investigators have now identified the victim as 45-year-old William Fields.  Fields was working Saturday night as a pizza delivery driver when he stepped onto the porch of a house on West 27th Street.  He fell through the porch and was pinned by heavy debris.  The incident has been determined to be an accident and there is no ongoing criminal investigation.


WOMAN SHOT AFTER POINTING WEAPON AT OFFICERS

(Centerville, IN)--A Centerville woman pointed a weapon at a Wayne County Sheriff’s Deputy and Centerville Police officer Sunday night and was shot as a result.  It started at 6:30 Sunday night at a home in the 500 block of East South Street.  Officers responded to a report of a suicidal female.  She was outside on a porch when the officer and deputy arrived.  That’s when they noticed she had a weapon.  The woman retreated inside for a short time and then came back out.  That’s when she pointed the weapon at the deputy and was shot.  She was taken to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton by helicopter.  Her name and condition have not been released.  Both the officer and the deputy have been placed on administrative leave.


COVID-19 CASES DROP IN WAYNE COUNTY

(Wayne County, IN)--There has been a drop in the number of weekly Covid-19 cases in Wayne County.  The county has reported that 126 people have tested positive since last Monday.  That’s a 26% drop from the previous Monday-to-Monday weekly total and an 83% drop from the week before that.  Wayne County, though, has reported another Covid-19 death, bringing the total to 264.  There were 35 patients at Reid Health Monday morning.  71% of those people were unvaccinated.


ONE DEAD AFTER PORCH COLLAPSES IN CONNERSVILLE

(Connersville, IN)--One person was killed over the weekend in Connersville in what was initially reported as a porch collapse.  According to scanner traffic, first responders were sent to the 200 block of West 27th Street at 11:30 Saturday night when a porch collapsed.  There has been no information released yet regarding what caused the porch to collapse, the identity of the victim, or other circumstances surrounding the incident.


RESIDENTS ENCOURAGED TO SHOP LOCAL AT SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY

(Richmond, IN)--Saturday is Small Business Saturday in Richmond.  Mayor Dave Snow explained in a recent promotional video why it’s important for people to do at least some of their Christmas shopping locally.  "On average, for every dollar spent locally, 67 cents stays local."  Organizations like the Wayne County Area Chamber of Commerce and Main Street Richmond are taking part.  Many local stores have online shopping options.


WHISPERING CHRISTMAS KICKS OFF FRIDAY NIGHT

(Eaton, OH)--Holiday festivities kick off in Eaton Friday night.  It begins with a White Christmas celebration at 5:30 Friday afternoon at the Preble County Courthouse with music from the Eaton High School Band.  That will be followed by the first night of Whispering Christmas at Fort St. Clair.  The popular local light display will continue every night through Christmas.


WAYNE COUNTY RECORDS TWO DEATHS, HIGHEST CASE TOTAL IN SIX WEEKS

(Wayne County, IN)--Wayne County on Tuesday reported two new Covid-19 deaths and its highest single-day case total in nearly six weeks.  The two deaths bring the county’s total to 263.  There were 47 new cases reported Tuesday.  The last day it was higher was back on October 12, when Wayne County reported 52 cases.  The county’s positivity rate Wednesday morning stood at 7.6%.  An updated color-coded Covid-19 map comes out later Wednesday.


ONE CAPTURED, TWO ESCAPE WEDNESDAY MORNING CHASE

(Richmond, IN)--One of three people who led RPD officers on a high-speed chase Wednesday morning was booked into jail at 4:30 Wednesday morning.  24-year-old Kasey Collins now is charged with dealing both cocaine and methamphetamine.  According to scanner traffic, speeds reached 100 miles per hour shortly after the chase began at 12th and East Main in Richmond.  The SUV crashed near the 1400 block of South J.  Collins was captured, but two other people including one male and one female were able to get away.  There were no reports of any injuries.


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