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State Briefing

12 people killed in 12 crashes

COLUMBUS — The highway patrol says 12 people were killed in 12 traffic crashes during the Fourth of July holiday reporting period. A patrol release says impairment was determined to be a factor in at least three of those crashes. The patrol had warned last week that it would be cracking down on motorists who were drinking and driving during the reporting period that began July 3 and ended Sunday. Troopers made 709 arrests for impaired driving and 507 for drug-related charges from over that period and responded to 809 crashes. A total of four crashes killed eight people during last year’s shorter Fourth of July reporting period from July 3 through July 4. Those crashes included one related to driving under the influence that killed three people.

Man in custody for slayings

CLEVELAND (AP) — Two neighbors died from gunshots while two children found dead in one of the victim’s home died from smoke inhalation from a fire set in the house, a coroner said Wednesday. Police later said they had taken a man into custody and planned to reveal more about aggravated murder charges they plan to file during a news conference on Thursday. The man’s identity wasn’t released and few other details have been revealed about the Tuesday morning discovery of the bodies. Relatives said the two neighbors, a man and a woman, didn’t really know each other.

Sheriff accepts suspension

WAVERLY — An Ohio sheriff has accepted suspension in the aftermath of his indictment and a judge’s restrictions. Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader was charged last month with counts including theft in office and evidence-tampering after authorities looked into a complaint accusing him of stealing money that had been seized in drug cases. He pleaded not guilty and is free on bond. A judge said he couldn’t have contact with witnesses in the case and Ohio Auditor Keith Faber asked the state Supreme Court to suspend the sheriff.

Remains of Ohio hiker found

NOGALES, Ariz. — Sarchers have recovered the remains of an Ohio man who got lost in February while hiking in rugged terrain in the Santa Rita Mountains near Tucson. Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada said searchers on Wednesday located the remains of 82-year-old Harold “Joe” Smallwood of Springboro, Ohio, after being led to an area where another hiker on Tuesday found Smallwood’s fanny pack. A weeklong search launched Feb. 5 after Smallwood called 911 to report being lost was unsuccessful. Smallwood had been staying in Tucson.

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