Monday, July 29, 2013

Pomeroy man arrested for exposure on the bike path

Michael Brent Manley
ATHENS – Athens County Sheriff Patrick Kelly said 33 year old Michael Manley of Pomeroy, was arrested for public indecency Monday for allegedly exposing his genitals to a 22 year old female as she was jogging on the bike path. The female called 911 and Lt. Aaron Maynard and Deputy Chris Tomsha responded.

The deputies learned a blue scooter was involved and the scooter was located in the parking area of the bike path off of Second Street in Athens. Using the information from the registration they were able to pull up a photo of the owner.

Deputy Tomsha and Lt. Maynard watched the scooter and apprehended Manley when he returned to the scooter.

When Manley was apprehended he was also found to be in possession of an exact-replica firearms BB gun. Manley stated he carried the gun to scare off someone if he was threatened. Manley was transported to the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail in Nelsonville and was booked in at 7:45 p.m.

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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

SE Ohio Foodbank needs volunteers for commodity food box packing event

LOGAN - The Southeast Ohio Foodbank is holding Commodity Supplemental Food Box packing event Saturday, August 3 from 9 a.m. to noon.

Volunteers are needed to pack 2,000 commodity supplemental food boxes. The foodbank is located at 1005 CIC Drive in Logan.

“We are asking for volunteers to join us for this fun and meaningful activity. These commodity boxes go out each month to 4,000 seniors who live in your neighborhood,” said Teresa Cline-Scurlock, Community Relations Specialist.

A program of Hocking Athens Perry Community Action, the foodbank provides food and other essential items to member agencies in 10 counties including Athens, Vinton, Gallia, Hocking, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Morgan, Perry and Washington.

Individuals and groups are encouraged to volunteer. For Information Teresa Cline-Scurlock at

(740)385-6813 or email at
Twitter @cleverpeasant

ODNR workshop promotes fishing for kids

ATHENS — Spaces are available for educators, leaders, or conservation clubs who have a sincere interest in taking kids fishing and want to become certified fishing instructors, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife. A free workshop is available on from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 13, which will take place at Wildlife District Four Office, 360 E. State St., Athens.

Passport to Fishing is a one-day instructor training program that qualifies individuals to become Division of Wildlife certified fishing instructors. All participants will need to pass a background check before being certified.

Passport to Fishing was developed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and adopted by the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation. Workshops teach volunteers the basics of fishing and how to run a four-station fishing program with a fishing event. These instructors then go back to their communities, with a written curriculum and training aids, to teach youngsters and beginning anglers the basics of fishing.

By becoming a certified instructor, attendees will not only be able to help in reconnecting students with the outdoors, but will also have the skills and resources to do it in a more successful way. Resources available include grants, equipment, brochures and trainingInterested candidates should dress for the weather, and don’t need to bring any of their personal fishing gear

To register for the workshop, call Chelsea no later than August, at (740) 589-9942. For additional class information, visit

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Regional Crime File: McArthur Police Department

Wellston man in custody on multiple warrants

Johnathan Bobb

On July 14 at approximately 12:10 a.m., Lt. Neel responded to Bud’s One Stop in response to a report of an intoxicated male causing a disturbance. Once on scene, Neel identified the subject as Johnathan Bobb, 28, of Wellston. 

It was determined after identifying him that Bobb had an active felony warrant arrest warrant out of Jackson County and Neel then placed Bobb under arrest. While searching Bobb, Neel found what were alleged to be multiple prescription pills.

Bobb was transferred into the custody of Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and charges of disorderly conduct by intoxication and possession of a controlled substance are pending.

Jackson County Correctional Facility personnel confirmed that Bobb was released July 22 on his own recognizance and that Bobb also has an active warrant from Gallia County and is currently being held in the Gallia County Jail for allegedly violating probation. 

Alleged grand theft auto

On July 16, approximately 11 p.m. Lt. Neel was alerted of a possible stolen vehicle by the vehicle’s owner, Flossie Coleman of South Bloomingville, Coleman said she had offered the vehicle for sale and a male had test driven a vehicle and never returned.

Coleman said she was could not locate the vehicle and called to report it stolen. An alert was issued for the vehicle which was later found Athens County. The Athens Police Department initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle and apprehend the suspect, Eli Workman, 18 of Ray. Workman was placed under arrest and transported to the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail. A felony charge of grand theft of a vehicle is pending review by the Vinton County Prosecutor’s Office.

Domestic violence suspect flees

On July 20 approximately 3:32 a.m., Officer Hixson responded to the Vinton County Sheriff’s Office for the report of a female allegedly involved in a domestic disturbance. The female said her boyfriend, identified as Thomas Harkins, 34, of McArthur, struck her in the face and caused physical injury.
Further investigation confirmed that Harkins had inflicted physical harm on the female victim and had made multiple threatening phone calls while she was at the sheriff’s office. Harkins is alleged to have fled the area. Charges of domestic violence and telecommunications harassment have been submitted to the Vinton County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

Vinton County State Senator announces district office hours

State Sen. Bob Peterson
Editor's Note: The Clever Peasants posts availability of local elected officials regardless of political affiliation. Access to office holders provides constituents the opportunity to get answers on policy positions and issues.

COLUMBUS — Republican State Sen. Bob Peterson (R- Sabina) will hold open office hours for residents of the 17th Senate District, Thursday, July 25.

Peterson represents the 17th Ohio Senate District, which includes the western portion of Vinton County and all of Jackson, Gallia, Ross, Fayette, Highland, Pike and portions of Lawrence and Pickaway counties.

According to Peterson’s office, no appointment is necessary and either Peterson or a member of his staff will be available at the following locations:

Pike County Commissioner’s Office
12:30 - 1:30 p.m.
230 Waverly Plaza, Waverly

Ross County Northside Branch Public Library
*Includes Representative Gary Scherer R–Circleville*
2 -3 p.m.
550 Buckeye St., Chillicothe

Pickaway County Public Library
*Includes Representative Gary Scherer*
4 – 5 p.m.
1160 N. Court St. Circleville

For information visit

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Friday, July 19, 2013

Obama speaks on Zimmerman verdict: “Trayvon Martin could have been me”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In what may prove to be one of the most historic moments of his administration, President Barack Obama used the daily White House briefing as an opportunity to speak on the Zimmerman verdict.
In a poignant moment of personal reflection, Obama compared his own experience as a young black man. “When Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son…another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me, 35 years ago."
The President’s remarks came as the White House press corps gathered for the daily briefing with Press Secretary Jay Carney.
“Once again I send my thoughts and prayers to the family for Trayvon Martin and remark on the incredible grace and dignity with which they've dealt with the entire situation can only imagine what they're going through its remarkable how they've handled it,” Obama said.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Another Pennsylvania Wastewater Treatment Plant Accused of Illegally Disposing Radioactive Fracking Waste

Another Pennsylvania Wastewater Treatment Plant Accused of Illegally Disposing Radioactive Fracking Waste (via Desmogblog)

A Pennsylvania industrial wastewater treatment plant has been illegally accepting oil and gas wastewater and polluting the Allegheny river with radioactive waste and other pollutants, according to an environmental group which announced today that it…

UCM Athens to hold Justice for Trayvon vigil

ATHENS – United Campus Ministries is holding a Justice For Trayvon vigil at the Athens County Courthouse Monday, July 22 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The courthouse is located on the corner of Court Street and Washington Street in Uptown Athens.

For several years the midday vigil has focused on protesting war and social injustice. 

UCM is encouraging participants to bring signs in support of justice for Trayvon Martin, the Sanford, Fla teenager shot to death while walking home.

In a trial that divided much of the country, a Seminole County jury on July 13, found defendant George Zimmerman, 28, not guilty in the death of 17-year-old Martin. Zimmerman was charged with shooting the Sanford teenager once in the chest February 26, 2012 during a confrontation at the Retreat at Twin Lakes.

Prosecutors had charged Zimmerman, a self-described community watchman, with second-degree murder with a lessor and included charge of manslaughter, arguing Zimmerman initiated the confrontation while Martin was walking home at the time of his death. Zimmerman and Martin were both residents of the community.

The verdict has raised nationwide concerns over Florida’s Stand Your Ground. Enacted in 2005, the statute allows someone who believed their live was in danger or they were in danger of grievous bodily harm to use lethal force. The law expanded the definition of self-defense and can immunize the use of deadly force.

In the days following the verdict, artists and performers, notably singer-songwriter Stevie Wonder, have announced they will not perform in Florida venues until the state legislature to repeal the controversial law

The Congressional Black Caucus is reportedly working on a number of bills designed to limit the use of so-called stand your ground laws as a defense in federal cases.

Incorporated in 1968, UCM's stated mission is to engage the Ohio University and Athens County communities in spiritual growth, community service and work for justice, guided by socially progressive and interfaith values.

Twitter @cleverpeasant 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The National Weather Service issues regional heat advisory


At 10:33 a.m. Wednesday July 17, the National Weather Service Charleston, W.Va. has issued a heat advisory.

The heat advisory remains in effect from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and includes Athens, Vinton, Perry, Morgan, Washington, Jackson, Meigs and Gallia counties.

Heat index values will be around 100 degrees due to temperatures in the  lower 90s  and dew points in the lower 70s.

The advisory includes the cities of New Lexington, Crooksville, Somerset, McConnelsville, Malta, Stockport, Athens, Marietta, Belpre, Jackson, Wellston, Oak Hill, McArthur, Hamden, Gallipolis, Ironton, South Point Kenova, Ceredo, Wayne, Huntington, Point Pleasant, New Haven, Parkersburg, Vienna, St. Marys, Belmont, Paden City, Sistersville and Middlebourne.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Regional Crime File

From the McArthur Police Department

Oliver Lawson
In the early morning hours of July 10, Officer Hixson conducted a felony traffic stop on a vehicle on South Market Street. Hixson took the driver, Oliver Lawson, 53 of Wellston into custody on active, nationwide arrest warrant from Morgan CountyIndiana on probation violation stemming from burglary and theft charges. Lawson was transported to the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail pending an extradition hearing. 

On July 9  at approximately 10:43 p.m., Officer Hixson initiated a traffic stop on East Main street in for a minor traffic violation. Keith White, 45, of McArthur, consented to a search of his vehicle and alleged illegal drug paraphernalia was found. White was cited and released pending a court hearing.


On June 30 at approximately 2:43 a.m., Officer Walker responded to a complaint at 412 E. North St. Walker made contact with resident Wayne Rutter. Rutter shares the residence with his mother, Bobby Jo Fee, 39, of McArthur. Rutter said he returned home and found the front door to the home open and belongings inside the residence disturbed.

While investigating the incident, Walker allegedly discovered multiple items of illegal drug paraphernalia. A felony charge of tampering with drugs and a misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia has been forwarded to the Vinton County Prosecutor’s office for review. Walker was assisted by deputies from the Vinton County Sheriff's Office.


On June 30 approximately 5:52 a.m., Officer Walker responded a report of a physical altercation at Steele’s Motel on East Main Street. Walker made contact with Curtis Neaves, 43 of McArthur who alleged that Robert Nesser, 65, of Wellston, arrived at the motel and brandished a firearm towards him.


Walker reported that Nesser had fled the scene and was later detained by Wellston Police Department. After further investigation, Walker determined that Neaves had removed the firearm from Nesser’s hands and struck him with it multiple times causing injury. Nesser was transported to an area hospital by emergency medical services for treatment of his injuries.

Neaves and Nesser face charges of felonious assault and the case was forwarded to the Vinton County Prosecutor’s office for review. Walker was assisted by deputies from the Vinton County Sheriff’s Office and officers from the Wellston Police Department.
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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Zimmerman found not guilty in shooting death of Trayvon Martin

George Zimmerman in 2012 
By Michael O'Brien

SANFORD, Fla. – In a trial that has divided much of the country, a Seminole County jury found defendant George Zimmerman, 28, not guilty in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman was charged with shooting the Sanford teenager once in the chest February 26, 2012 during a confrontation at the Retreat at Twin Lakes. Zimmerman and Martin were both residents of the community.
Prosecutors had charged Zimmerman with second-degree murder with a lessor and included charge of manslaughter. The trial began June 10 in the Seminole County Courthouse with Judge Debra Nelson presiding.
Zimmerman’s lead defense attorney Mark O’Mara contended his client was acting in self-defense after the teen allegedly assaulted Zimmerman, leaving him no choice but to shoot Martin. Florida had enacted a so-called Stand Your Ground statute in 2005, allowing someone who believed their live was in danger or they were in danger of grievous bodily harm to use lethal force.
The prosecution argued Zimmerman initiated the confrontation and Martin was simply walking home at the time of his death.
Martin, wearing a “hoodie” or hooded sweatshirt, was returning to his step-father’s home from a local convenience store with a bag of Skittles and some iced tea when he was confronted by Zimmerman. Zimmerman, a self-described neighborhood watch captain, was armed with a concealed 9mm semi-automatic handgun when he spotted Martin walking down the street.
Zimmerman called a non-emergency police dispatcher to report what he believed to be a suspicious black male walking down the street on night punctuated by light rain. Zimmerman claimed the teen was stalking his vehicle, looked to be under the influence of drugs and peering into the windows of homes in the gated community.

Zimmerman can be heard in transcripts of 911 calls telling a dispatcher he was following Martin on foot. The dispatcher had advised Zimmerman there was no need to pursue Martin.
According to Zimmerman, the teen sucker punched him and slammed his head on the sidewalk. Eye witness of the accounts of the struggle varied. While Zimmerman did sustain minor injuries, the prosecution said the injuries while not sufficient to immunize him from prosecution under the stand your ground statute.

Twitter @cleverpeasant 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Burr Oak State Park Lodge to hold grand reopening

Courtesy of ODNR
GLOUSTER – The Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), in partnership with U.S. Hotels, a national hospitality and leisure company, announced Friday the grand reopening of the Burr Oak Lodge and Conference Center. The grand reopening event will be held Wednesday July 17, at 5 p.m. and will include an open house and ribbon cutting. The public is invited to attend.
“We have enjoyed partnering with U.S. Hotels as we continue to revitalize and improve the Burr Oak Lodge and Conference Center,” said ODNR Director James Zehringer. “Burr Oak State Park has always been a beautiful place for families to visit, and now, with the support of the local communities and U.S. Hotels, we have been able to provide a lodge that rivals the park’s natural beauty.”
Fifty-five jobs will now remain in the local community as business in the lodge continues to increase. The room renovations for the lodge are nearly completed as the lodge’s original guest rooms are being expanded to provide 38 luxury rooms with updated furnishings and amenities.

Completed improvements made by ODNR and U.S. Hotels include:
  • Common area renovated and new furnishings installed;
  • Updated meeting rooms;
  • New energy-efficient HVAC systems installed in all lodge rooms and some cottages;
  • Lodge restaurant was remodeled with traditional and bar-style seating areas;
  • Fitness room was created;
  • Miniature golf course and children’s playground were added;
  • Swimming pool area and circulation system renovated;
  • Tennis and basketball courts resurfaced;
  • Enhanced signage on the trails;
  • New phone system and improved WiFi throughout the facility;
  • Courtesy docks added for customers arriving by boat.
Future improvements include:
  • New shelter house for lodge guests to be completed this fall
  • Disc golf course scheduled to open this fall
  • Sand volleyball area
  • Public bonfire ring
  • Relaxation deck
People who attend the grand reopening will view renovated guest rooms and a cabin prior to the ribbon cutting ceremony. Attendees will have a chance to win door prizes, such as free vacation packages to Burr Oak Lodge as well as Shawnee and Hueston Woods Lodges, golf packages and more. Free appetizers and beverages will also be available.
Burr Oak State Park was established as a state park in 1952, and the lodge was dedicated 46 years ago in April 1967. Prior to closing temporarily on Jan. 31, 2012, the Burr Oak Lodge and Conference Center employed 45 full-time equivalent employees. The lodge was the second-largest employer in Morgan County. Burr Oak State Park covers Athens, Morgan and Perry counties.

Burr Oak Lodge is located at 10660 Burr Oak Lodge Road, Glouster, Ohio 45732. For more information on Burr Oak State Park, contact Jean Backs at 614-265-7077. Learn more about the Burr Oak Lodge and Conference Center at