Teens arrested

AKRON: Two teens were arrested on charges of robbing a man near the University of Akron campus early Saturday.

The teens, ages 17 and 16, were being held in the Summit County Juvenile Detention Center.

Police arrested the boys shortly after responding to a robbery report from a 19-year-old Canton man who said he was robbed while walking near the intersection of Power and Sumner streets about 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

The man told police the robbers approached and asked if he wanted to buy marijuana.

When he declined, the robbers pulled him by the shirt and took $36.

UA police stopped the suspects on Kathryn Place.

The victim identified them as the robbers, police said.

The man’s money was recovered.

Equipment heist

AKRON: Thousands of dollars worth of electronics were stolen during a robbery Sunday at a car wash in Akron.

Police say the robbery unfolded about 2:30 p.m. when three men from Wooster stopped at a Frederick Boulevard car wash to meet with a prospective buyer from Akron who was interested in acquiring Martin Ash and JVL surround-sound systems and an Extreme Home Media projection television.

The equipment was worth about $29,000, according to a report.

During the meeting, two men armed with a shotgun robbed the victims and took their 2000 Chrysler van and $1,000.

Police are trying to locate the stolen van, a black Chrysler Town & County with Ohio license plates FPL 9357.

Gunshot wounds

AKRON: An Akron man was shot several times while inside his Carpenter Street apartment Sunday night.

The man, 23, was being treated at a local hospital. His condition is considered serious.

A woman called police about 10:30 p.m. after hearing several shots being fired.

Responding officers found the victim with multiple gunshot wounds.

Police provided no other details.

Life sentence

AKRON: An Akron man was sentenced Monday to life in prison for killing his mother during a knife attack last winter.

Daniel E. Smelko, 49, will not be eligible for parole until 2027.

He pleaded guilty Monday morning to murder and felonious assault charges in Summit County Common Pleas Court.

Prosecutors say Smelko stabbed and killed his mother, Patricia Sees, 71, following an argument in her Highview Avenue home in South Akron on Jan. 24.

Smelko lived with his mother and had a troubled past that included three marriages, mental and anger issues and a painkiller addiction that led him to quarrel with and steal from his mother, authorities said.

Family members said Sees was intending to throw her son out of her home, which she opened up to him two years ago after he lost his job, his home and his car. Sees’ body was found in her bedroom.

Man wounded

AKRON: Akron police are looking for the gunman who shot and injured a man Friday night.

The victim, 23, was shot in the leg and was being treated for nonlife-threatening injuries, police said.

The shooting happened about 10 p.m. in the 1100 block of McKinley Avenue. The victim was standing in the driveway with several other men when the shot was fired from a small, dark-colored car, police said.

Landlord robbed

AKRON: An Akron landlord walked into a robbery Sunday night while trying to collect rent from a tenant.

The landlord, 77, told police he was visiting his property on Hudson Avenue about 6:30 p.m. when he went inside and saw two men armed with handguns robbing his tenant.

The gunmen turned their attention to the landlord and robbed him of $200. The tenant lost $350. The robbers then fled the home.

Bridge plot

AKRON: A man accused of plotting to bomb a highway bridge near Cleveland has lost his bid to keep prosecutors from using his post-arrest statements.

An attorney for defendant Connor Stevens had argued that his client’s comments to FBI agent Jake Ruddy in April weren’t voluntary and should be suppressed.

Court records indicate Ruddy had talked with Stevens for 14 minutes before beginning the process of advising him about his Miranda warning rights.

Federal judge David Dowd ruled Monday in favor of government prosecutors following his review of the interview’s circumstances.

Dowd said issues he considered included the fact that Stevens made what the judge called incriminating admissions during the four-hour interview, and that Ruddy did not coerce Stevens.

Stevens’ attorney, Terry Gilbert, says it’s difficult to win suppression requests.

Meeting moved

AKRON: A meeting hosted by Akron councilmen Jeff Fusco and Marco Sommerville that was originally scheduled for Monday has been postponed until Sept. 11.

The meeting will now be from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Crouse Community Learning Center, 1000 Diagonal Road.

Speakers will be John Valle, Akron’s new director of neighborhood assistance, and Akron police Chief James Nice.


Woman burned

ADAMSVILLE: Sheriff’s deputies are looking for people they think may have information about a burned, naked woman found on a rural road in eastern Ohio over the weekend.

The Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office said the 29-year-old Canton woman was found about 8:30 a.m. Sunday by a passing motorist on a road north of Zanesville, about 70 miles east of Columbus.

Muskingum County Sheriff Matthew Lutz said the woman was flown to the Ohio State Medical Center in Columbus with fourth-degree burns over most of her body. She also had been raped.

Lutz said the crime was not random.

Investigators located a crime scene in the woods nearby. A vehicle that may be connected to the crime was found in Canton, about 75 miles north.

– Associated Press


Meet candidate

NORTON: Mike Kaplan, the Democratic candidate in the newly formed 38th Ohio House District, will host a Meet the Candidate Night for Norton-area residents from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Norton Community Center, 4060 Columbia Woods Drive.

The 38th District stretches along the entire western edges of Summit and Stark counties. Among the communities are all or parts of Bath Township, Canal Fulton, Clinton, Copley Township, Fairlawn, New Franklin, Norton and Richfield.

The session is open to the public.


Provisional ballots

COLUMBUS: A federal judge has ordered Ohio to change its rules for counting provisional ballots to ensure that more of the votes can be cast in the upcoming presidential election.

At issue are requirements for when a poll worker is permitted to reject a provisional ballot, typically a ballot cast in the wrong precinct.

Federal Judge Algenon Marbley said in a 61-page ruling Monday that advocacy groups have presented strong evidence that thousands of legally registered voters will be deprived of their voting rights in November because of poll worker error.

Marbley ordered Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted to issue new rules within 10 days making it harder for provisional ballots to be rejected.

A Husted spokesman said an appeal was likely.

– Associated Press


Trail to close

CUYAHOGA FALLS: The National Park Service will close the Ira Trailhead for several hours this week for a major bicycle tour.

The popular trailhead, off Riverview Road north of Ira Road in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, will close at 8 p.m. Friday and remain closed until 1 p.m. Saturday.

The move will accommodate bicyclists on the Summer Tour of Metro Parks (STOMP) on the Towpath Trail.

Park visitors are asked to park at the Botzum, Hunt Farm and Indigo Lake trailheads, all of which are near the Ira Trailhead.

The Towpath Trail will remain open.


Bus tour

KENT: Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, a national co-chair for President Barack Obama’s campaign, joined the “Romney Economics: Wrong for the Middle Class” bus tour Monday at Kent State University.

The bus is traveling through Ohio for three days as a counter to the Republican convention to highlight the impact Romney’s election would have on the country and Ohio’s major cities.

At Kent State, the campaign talked to students about changes Romney has proposed that would increase interest rates on Stafford Loans and decrease funding for Pell Grants. ?


Sixth DUI charge

MASSILLON: A Massillon man crashed his pickup truck into a retention pond and wound up being arrested a sixth time for drunken driving, police said.

Robert Schreckengost, 42, was being held in the Stark County Jail following an appearance Monday in Massillon Municipal Court. The charge is a felony.

He is also accused of driving with a suspended license, online court records show.

His vehicle was impounded.

Massillon police announced his arrest on their Facebook page. “Another reminder of the dangers of OVI,’’ the posting reads.

Officers say Schreckengost was driving Sunday when he failed to negotiate a curve near the Massillon Recreation Center and crashed into a retention pond.

Schreckengost has pleaded not guilty. He is scheduled to appear in court again Sept. 5.


Panel vacancy

NORTON: The city is seeking applicants from Ward 1 to fill a vacancy on its Planning Commission.

Planners meet at 6 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month.

They receive a small stipend.

Applicants must be registered voters and are asked to have some relevant background/experience related to the job.

Candidates should send a letter of interest and qualifications to: Mayor Mike Zita, 4060 Columbia Woods Drive, Norton, OH 44203, or by email to annc@cityofnorton.org.

For more information, call 330-825-7815, ext. 314.


Participation soars

AKRON: Metro Parks, Serving Summit County, reported the second highest participation for its annual spring Spree for All program.

The hiking program for people of all abilities had 2,740 people earn awards in 2012. That’s nearly 300 more than 2011.

The record participation was 3,254 in 2004, the program’s first year.