AKRON

Third man arrested

AKRON: A third suspect in the December robbery and kidnapping of three people was arrested Wednesday by Akron police and the U.S. Marshals’ Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force.

Jason Coppinger, 31, was arrested at an East Glenwood Avenue home about 9 a.m. Police say DNA evidence connects him to the Dec. 3 incident at a home on Briner Avenue in Goodyear Heights. Police say three people in the home were assaulted and robbed of keys and cash by intruders armed with handguns.

Police responding at the time to a 911 call arrested two suspects: Richard M. Reed, 29, and Obie Hairston, 26, both of Akron. They are charged with aggravated robbery, kidnapping, carrying a concealed weapon, illegal possession of weapons, willful fleeing and obstructing police.

Robbery charge

AKRON: An Akron man has been charged in the robbery this month of two Hoban High School students.

Joseph Barnhart, 32, is being held in the Summit County Jail on a charge of aggravated robbery. He was arrested Tuesday by Akron police and the U.S. Marshals’ Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force.

Police say the robber concealed his hand in a bag and approached the students as they sat in a car parked in the school’s parking lot March 22. He told the victims that he was armed with a gun and he ordered them to take him to a drive-through on South Arlington Street, where he robbed them of $26 and ran off.

Suspect named

AKRON: Police have issued a warrant for a man accused of robbing a downtown bank last December.

Lamont Tyrone Vinson, 32, is wanted on an aggravated robbery warrant.

Police accuse Vinson of robbing the KeyBank branch at 219 S. Main St. on Dec. 12.

Anyone with information is asked to call Akron police at 330-375-2490. Anonymous tips may be left via the Internet at http://akronohio.gov/asp/tip.html.

Cabdriver charged

AKRON: State Highway Patrol troopers say an Akron cabdriver showed up drunk for a taxi inspection.

Maurice Morton, 52, also is accused of urinating on a mulch bed while waiting for his taxi to be inspected at the patrol’s Canton post Saturday afternoon.

Troopers said Morton and two other drivers for Tri County Taxi in Akron came to the post in three taxis about 2 p.m. to have the vehicles inspected. A trooper reported seeing Morton urinating outside and confronted him.

Morton admitted drinking one beer, troopers said, but a breath test showed his blood-alcohol content at 0.11 percent, above the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

Morton was cited for drunken driving and was taken home by his co-workers. Troopers say Morton had a DUI in 1998.

Rape suspect held

AKRON: A Columbus man has been arrested in connection with the July rape of an Akron teenager.

James Winchester, 25, was arrested Wednesday at his Columbus home. He was being held in the Franklin County Jail on rape and kidnapping charges.

Police accuse Winchester of giving a ride to a 17-year-old girl about 2 a.m. on July 7, sexually assaulting her and forcing her out of the car.

DNA evidence was used to identify Winchester.

The case was investigated by Akron and Columbus police, the U.S. Marshals’ Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force and the Fugitive Task Force in Columbus.

7-year prison term

AKRON: Aaron Stitt has been sentenced to seven years in prison after pleading guilty to three felonies in connection with the assault of the mother of his child, authorities said.

Stitt, 24, pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary, domestic violence and violating a protection order. He was sentenced by Summit County Common Pleas Judge Paul Gallagher.

In November, prosecutors said Stitt climbed through a window of the victim’s home and assaulted her.

The woman had a civil protection order against him.

In March 2001, just two months shy of his 14th birthday, Stitt fatally shot his father, Dennis Floyd Stitt, as he slept on a couch in the living room of their Fulton Street home in Akron.

Subsequent psychological evaluations of Stitt found him to be a victim of battered child syndrome, and he wound up serving 2› years in the Department of Youth Services after admitting to a charge of voluntary manslaughter in Summit County Juvenile Court.

MEDINA COUNTY

Drive-by shooting

WADSWORTH: Police are looking for the shooter who fired into a home in the 400 block of State Street.

The bullet, fired from a passing car about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, only damaged the home. One person inside the home was not harmed, Wadsworth police said.

Police believe only one shot was fired by someone inside a full-size older model car that was described as gold or tan.

Anonymous tips or leads can be left via voice mail at 330-335-2769. Information may also be sent by email to the Wadsworth police at wadsworthpd@gmail.com or by telephone at 330-334-1511.

TALLMADGE

Drug arrests

TALLMADGE: Police arrested three people and seized about 26 pounds of marijuana and more than $10,000 while investigating complaints of drug trafficking.

Richard Price, 27, and Kenneth Price, 24, both of Tallmadge, and Curtis Albright, 21, of Akron, are charged with felony trafficking in marijuana and possession of marijuana.

Police said they were investigating complaints of drug activity around Broadview Road on March 19 and stopped a car carrying the three men.

Officers said they smelled marijuana inside the vehicle, prompting a search in which they found the drug wrapped in numerous packages.

Police said the men carried a “large amount” of cash in their pockets and $10,900 was found in a search of Richard Price’s home on Broadview Road.

PORTAGE COUNTY

School bomb scare

BRIMFIELD TWP.: Officials evacuated Field High School Wednesday afternoon when the letters “BOM” were found written on a bathroom wall.

Field Superintendent Beth Coleman notified parents, and students were sent to the middle school next door.

Brimfield police, who have an officer stationed at the high school, searched the building.

“We searched the building and the police gave us the all-clear,” Coleman said. “We brought the students back in by 2:30 p.m.”

She believes that a student wrote on the bathroom wall, but she doesn’t know who did it.

Gas line break

STREETSBORO: The Camelot Village mobile home park was evacuated for about three hours Wednesday because of a break in a natural gas line.

City workers broke the pipe in the 1500 block of Frost Road about 11:40 a.m. while cleaning a ditch.

Police evacuated the mobile home park, which has its office at 1425 Frost Road, as a precaution.

Residents were allowed to return home about 2:45 p.m., after East Ohio Gas shut down the line.

STARK COUNTY

Ex-officer sentenced

CANTON: A former North Canton police lieutenant charged with felony assault and domestic violence after firing a handgun several times outside his home pleaded guilty Wednesday to a misdemeanor charge of inducing panic.

Scott F. Denniss, 46, was sentenced to six months in jail, which was suspended, and placed on probation for two years. During that time he cannot own or use a gun, Stark County Common Pleas Judge Charles E. Brown Jr. said.

As part of the plea bargain, Denniss agreed to give up his law-enforcement certificate. He resigned about a month after the Jan. 29 incident.

Police went to the 200 block of Weber Street in response to a report that Denniss, who was off duty, was outside his home, distraught.

He fired shots from a 9?mm handgun into the ground before surrendering.

Denniss joined the North Canton department as a full-time officer in 1991.