BC-OH--Ohio News Digest 130pm, OH

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The state at 1:30 p.m. All times EST.

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COLUMBUS — A state instructor training educators to respond in school shootings says practicing in advance and using whatever resources are available are key to saving lives. Participants in the first of five regional training events around Ohio watched a sometimes graphic and emotional presentation drawing on warning signs missed and lessons learned in previous tragedies, including the Columbine and Virginia Tech shootings and the deadly Chardon shooting last year that spurred the state to offer such training. By Kantele Franko.

AP Photos.


COLUMBUS — A court hears competing arguments on whether an anti-gambling group should be allowed to go forward with its challenge to Gov. John Kasich's decision to allow slots-like video lottery terminals at Ohio horse tracks. The complaint alleges Kasich's authorization of racinos is unconstitutional because voters must approve expansions of the lottery. By Julie Carr Smyth.


CINCINNATI — A former customer service representative at a southwest Ohio hospital sues over her firing for refusing to get a required flu shot because she is vegan. The ex-employee accuses Cincinnati Children's Hospital of violating her civil rights and discriminating against her religion. The hospital argues that veganism is not a religion. By Amanda Lee Myers.


SEATTLE — The U.S. soldier from Ohio accused of carrying out the massacre of 16 Afghan civilians during nighttime raids on two villages last year enters no plea to charges that could bring the death penalty. By Gene Johnson.

AP Photos FX101.


CINCINNATI — Regional banker Fifth Third Bancorp reports that fourth-quarter net income jumped 28 percent, helped by improving credit conditions. By Dan Sewell.


NEW ORLEANS — Inspectors taking the first-ever inventory of flood control systems overseen by the federal government have found hundreds of structures at risk of failing and endangering people and property in 37 states. By John Flesher and Cain Burdeau.

AP Photos.


— REFINERY SITE-CLEANUP — MUSKEGON TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Marathon Petroleum Co. has agreed to start cleaning up the source of oil byproducts under a former refinery site in West Michigan, and the company expects to submit a plan to state regulators later this year. Details of the overall cleanup plan haven't been determined, and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality must approve Findlay, Ohio-based Marathon's plans.

AP Photos.

— OFFICER-SEX CHARGES — COLUMBUS — A former Ohio school resource police officer is preparing to plead guilty to a charge that he coerced sexual behavior from minors.

Eds: will be updated.

— SCHOOL SAFETY-GUNS —ORRVILLE — A northeast Ohio school district plans to allow a science teacher to carry a firearm during class — a move the superintendent says was prompted by last month's mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school. The science teacher at Orrville City Schools is also reportedly an officer with the nearby Lawrence Township Police Department.

— ASSAULT RIFLE-ARREST — MONTVILLE TOWNSHIP — Two men have been arrested after authorities say bullets from an assault rifle they were firing traveled into the homes of residents 500 yards away.

— CLERGY ABUSE — WARREN — Undisclosed financial settlements have been negotiated for 11 men who say they were sexually abused by a Franciscan brother who taught and coached at a Catholic high school in northeast Ohio three decades ago.

— GREYHOUND BUS CRASH— ERIE, Pa. — Police say a Greyhound bus rear-ended a flatbed truck on Interstate 90 in Erie County, but police are reporting no serious injuries.

AP Photos.

— GUN CONTROL-OHIO — CLEVELAND — Cleveland's police chief is praising President Barack Obama's proposed gun control measures, while a local gun shop owner says the debate has boosted business.

— EARNS-HUNTINGTON BANCSHARES — COLUMBUS — Huntington Bancshares Inc. says its fourth-quarter net income jumped 34 percent, helped by a jump in mortgage banking income.

— PROFESSORS' WORKLOAD — TOLEDO — Administrators at the University of Toledo say budget woes could force full-time professors to teach more, increase class sizes and reduce course offerings.

—ASIAN BEETLE-OHIO — COLUMBUS— The government is proposing to inject healthy trees with pesticides to help battle the tree-killing Asian longhorned beetle in southwest Ohio. The beetle was discovered in a Clermont County area east of Cincinnati in June 2011.

— INTERSTATE CLOSURE-HONEY —CINCINNATI — Southbound Interstate 71 lanes near the Ohio River were closed during the morning rush hour after an accident involving a truck that was reportedly carrying honey. Lanes have reopened at Fort Washington Way, a major connector for motorists to get to the Brent Spence Bridge crossing to Kentucky.

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