About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

7/27/16 – 5:01 A.M.

A Putnam County man who was convicted of child endangerment in 2006 has now admitted to law enforcement he murdered the child. The Putnam County Sentinel reports Travis Soto made his confession at the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office Monday. The details of the confession are part of ongoing investigation, but Prosecutor Gary Lammers says that Soto’s comments indicated he acted willingly in the death of his son, 2-year-old Julio Soto-Baldoza.

Soto pleaded guilty to a child endangerment in 2006. He was initially charged with involuntary manslaughter after running the child over with an ATV and failing to get medical help.

Right now it’s unclear what, if any, charges Soto might face. Lammers tells the newspaper investigators are following up on Soto’s claim. They are looking to see if the evidence matches new statements.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

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7/26/16 – 1:23 A.M.

Whether or not a diversion channel gets built in Hancock County, local property owners are likely to hear from people interested in buying their land. Commissioner Mark Gazarek says that’s because ODOT is going to need fill material to widen I-75 in Findlay. He says the material will likely have to come from a local source…

AUDIO: Mark Gazarek

Gazarek and Commissioner Phil Riegle spoke to Findlay Mayor Lydia Mihalik and Service-Safety Director Paul Schmelzer about forming a small group to talk to property owners about the process of buying land. Gazarek added it was important to keep the agricultural community in the loop.

The conversation was held following an update on ODOT’s proposal to fund up to $2 million in bridge construction over a potential diversion channel.


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7/26/16 – 12:36 P.M.

The unemployment rate is Hancock County has seen a slight increase. The June 2016 Civilian Labor Force Estimates from the Department of Jobs and Family Services shows that there was a .5% increase in unemployment from May to June. That means unemployment is at 3.9% in Hancock County.

Putnam County also saw a .5% increase and is now at 3.8% of the population unemployed.

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7/26/16 – 10:52 A.M.

There is a new scam in Ohio according to the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page. It says that another agency in Ohio reported someone calling from the Police and Sheriff Funds asking for donations. The call was made to the sheriff of that county. The caller said the money being raised is for families of law enforcement who have been killed in the line of duty. When asked how officers could apply the line was disconnected

The Sheriff’s office urges you to to do your research. Do not use websites or phone numbers provided by the caller. If you’re asked to give an answer right away or if the deal seems too good to be true just hang up.

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7/26/16 – 5:25 A.M.

A workplace dispute led to shots being fired at a Fostoria business over the past weekend. The Review-Times reports police officers were called to Pallet Logistics at 1320 North Main Street around 11:50 a.m. Saturday. 26-year-old Kayree Jeffery of Fremont allegedly got into an argument about money with another person at the business. He then fired a handgun and drove away. No one was hurt.

Jeffery was arrested in Fremont. He’s charged with felonious assault and discharge of a firearm. He’s expected to be arraigned today.

MORE: Review-Times

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7/26/16 – 5:17 A.M.

An effort to drive up blood donations will take place in Putnam County this week. The Lima News reports the Ottawa Police Department and Volunteer Fire Department will take part in the “Battle of the Badges” blood drive Wednesday. The event will take place at the fire department at 850 Agner Street between 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

The departments are competing to see who can get the most donations made in their name.

For more information call (419)523-4810.

MORE: Lima News

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7/26/16 – 5:09 A.M.

East Melrose Avenue will be closed to through traffic between Crystal Avenue and Bright Road starting today. The city’s engineering department says resurfacing work will take place between 6:30 a.m.and 6:30 p.m. through the rest of the week. A detour will be posted.

You’re urged to avoid the area if possible.

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7/26/16 – 4:57 A.M.

A two-car crash injured one person in Findlay Monday afternoon. The Findlay Police Department reports the collision happened around 1 p.m. at the intersection of Bright Road and Croy Drive.

60-year-old Ann Sweigart of Bluffton was driving north on Bright Road when she stopped at the Croy Drive intersection and was hit from behind by a car driven by 33-year-old Courtney Roush of Findlay.

Sweigart was taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment of her injuries. Roush was cited for failure to maintain an assured clear distance.

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7/26/16 – 4:51 A.M.

A fire district in the McComb area officially has a new fire chief. The Courier reports Anthony Stateler has been named as the chief of the Northwest Hancock Fire District. He had been serving as the interim fire chief for the district since April. Stateler takes the place of Jeffery Dawson, who stepped down in March.

Stateler has 17 years of experience with the McComb Fire Department.

The joint fire district includes McComb, as well as Pleasant and Portage townships.

MORE: The Courier

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7/25/16 – 4:36 P.M.

The Rotary Club heard from a judge on the practice of drug court. Judge Reginald J. Routson of the Hancock County Court of Common Pleas says it is about finding solutions to drug addiction problems through behavioral problem solving. He addressed the Rotary Meeting saying that there are several methods to rehabilitate someone without sending them jail.

Audio: Judge Routson

Drug court allows the judge and a team of professionals to look into a person’s past and psychology to make decisions on how to best deal with them. The people in the program are closely monitored.

The program currently has two graduates, one of which now works with addiction services to help others.

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