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This Hour: Latest Ohio news, sports, business and entertainment

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GAY MARRIAGE-OHIO

Judge stays most of Ohio gay marriage ruling

CINCINNATI (AP) - A federal judge has put on hold the majority of what attorneys have called a "momentous" change to Ohio's gay marriage law.

Judge Timothy Black on Wednesday stayed his ruling ordering Ohio to recognize the marriages of gay couples who wed in other states.

Black made an exception for the four couples who filed the February lawsuit that led to the court case, ordering Ohio to immediately list both spouses in each relationship as parents on their children's birth certificates.

All other married gay couples in the state will see no immediate tangible expansion of their rights until an appeals court decides to uphold or overturn Black's ruling.

That likely will take months.

Black says implementing his ruling without knowing the appeal's outcome could cause confusion and potential inequity.

CHILD SHOT

Murder charge in death of 8-year-old Columbus boy

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Columbus police have filed a murder charge against a suspect in the death of an 8-year-old boy who died days after being shot in the head.

A report from Columbus police says the child, identified as Jamarion Cox, died Monday after he was struck four days earlier while riding in a vehicle with three adults and a younger boy. Police haven't disclosed the circumstances of the shooting.

Police identified the suspect as the boy's uncle, 23-year-old Robert Broom of Columbus, who was charged with felonious assault last week.

Police on Tuesday charged Broom with murder with a warrant issued for his arrest.

It's not clear if Broom has an attorney, and court records for the warrant listed none.

OHIO STATE-MUMPS

No school recommended for unvaccinated kids

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Central Ohio officials are warning that children without mumps vaccinations might have to miss weeks of school if an outbreak of the illness hits classrooms.

More than 200 cases of the contagious viral illness, with more than 130 of those linked to Ohio State University, have been reported this year.

The Columbus Dispatch reports Wednesday that the health commissioners for Columbus and Franklin County wrote letters to schools encouraging vaccinations.

The letters also advise parents that unvaccinated students might have to stay home 25 days or longer if clusters of mumps cases begin showing up in schools.

Officials have urged residents of the region to make sure they've been inoculated with two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine.

DEATH PENALTY-OHIO-REVIEW

Ohio justice: division over death penalty expected

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The chief justice of the Ohio Supreme Court says divisions about the death penalty on a panel that spent more than two years studying capital punishment in the state were to be expected.

Justice Maureen O'Connor said Tuesday that diametrically opposed positions and divisive topics were a healthy part of the panel's work.

The panel convened in 2011 by O'Connor finalized its recommendations last week and now awaits a dissenting report from prosecutors on the committee who disagreed with some proposals.

Recommendations include reducing the number of crimes eligible for the death penalty and creating a statewide board that would have the final say over death penalty charges in the state.

O'Connor says the committee's goal was a fair analysis of Ohio's 3-decade old capital punishment law.

CROSS PROTEST- OHIO VILLAGE

Crosses displayed in Ohio village challenged

STRATTON, Ohio (AP) - A group advocating the separation of church and state is protesting a pair of crosses displayed for Easter at an eastern Ohio village's municipal building.

The Madison, Wis.-based Freedom From Religion Foundation is challenging the claim by the mayor of Stratton that it's constitutional to display the crosses during holidays.

Mayor John Abdalla temporarily removed the crosses in January after the foundation threatened to sue.

The foundation says the village hasn't replied to its April 8 letter. Abdalla declined comment Wednesday.

It's not the first debate over religious freedom in the village.

In 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court sided with the Watchtower Society in a suit challenging a Stratton ordinance that imposed registration requirements and penalties on house-to-house solicitation. Justices ruled the law violated the First Amendment.

RESTAURANT BREAK-IN-RESCUE

Break-in suspect rescued from Ohio restaurant vent

MANSFIELD, Ohio (AP) - Police say an Ohio man suspected of breaking into a restaurant overnight became stuck in a ventilation duct, triggered a fire alarm and had to be rescued by emergency responders.

The Mansfield News Journal reports a subcontractor arrived at the Bob Evans in Mansfield as the alarm was sounding early Tuesday and spotted the suspect's legs dangling from the ventilation system above the stove.

Police allege the 5-foot-7, 155-pound man had climbed onto the roof and tried entering through the vent system but got stuck. Firefighters threw him a rope to secure around his wrists and pulled him back up through the ventilation shaft.

The suspect, 47-year-old John Edmonds of Mansfield, is charged with breaking and entering and having criminal tools. Court records listed no attorney for him Wednesday.

OHIO UTILITY REGULATOR

Ohio's new top utility regulator is sworn in

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) has sworn in a former state budget director and lawmaker as Ohio's top utility regulator.

The Republican governor swore in Thomas Johnson as chairman of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio on Wednesday.

Johnson, of suburban Columbus, replaces Todd Snitchler (SNIHCH'-lur), who decided not to seek reappointment when his term expired April 10.

Johnson was appointed by Kasich and confirmed by the Ohio Senate. He spent 22 years in the Ohio House before becoming budget director for then-Gov. Bob Taft.

Snitchler has joined the business department at McDonald Hopkins, where he'll counsel clients on issues of energy policy and strategy, government affairs and regulatory matters.

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