Local and state at a glance

Neglect reported in death of girl, 4

TOLEDO  — Authorities in Ohio say a 4-year-old girl found dead in a home had suffered several blunt-force injuries and showed signs of neglect, and malnourishment.

Police in Toledo say 24-year-old Bridgett White has been charged with endangering children and is being held in jail after appearing in court Wednesday.

Police say White told them she grabbed the girl to punish her during a tantrum and then blacked out and couldn’t remember what happened because she was using drugs.

Officers on Tuesday found Aaliyah Smith dead inside White’s home. Court records don’t indicate whether White has her own attorney.

The Blade newspaper reports White was the sole caregiver for the girl. A police spokesman says they believe the girl is a relative of White’s boyfriend.

Inmate serving life gets 28 years

AKRON — An Ohio inmate serving a life sentence for the 2011 murder of an Iraq War veteran has been sentenced to additional jail time for the rape of a woman more than 15 years ago.

Cleveland.com reports  57-year-old Efrem Johnson was sentenced Wednesday to 28 more years behind bars for the August 2000 rape of a woman in Akron.

Summit County prosecutors say Johnson lured his victim into the woods where he beat and raped her. The woman had injuries to her face and head when she was found by police.

DNA taken from the victim was matched to Johnson in 2014. The Akron man’s DNA was on file following his 2011 conviction for the fatal shooting of 24-year-old Jacob Courie in March 2010.

Johnson was found guilty in October.

Chinese lantern festival coming

COLUMBUS — A lantern festival with 38 life-size displays and more than 15,000 LED lights will bring some Chinese culture to Ohio’s capital city for nearly six weeks.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the Ohio Chinese Lantern Festival begins this evening at the Natural Resources Park at the Ohio Expo Center. The event runs through Jan. 2.

The festival will feature every animal on the Chinese zodiac calendar, including a dragon that’s longer than six school buses.

Organizers say colored flowers and toadstools will be at the event, along with games, food, and performances including martial arts, jar-balancing and face-changing.

Lanterns are traditionally lit on the last day of the Chinese New Year celebration in order to gain favor with the gods and yield a good harvest.

The Associated Press

COMMENTS