Dayton Daily News from Dayton, Ohio on December 14, 1989 · 3
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Dayton Daily News from Dayton, Ohio · 3

Dayton, Ohio
Issue Date:
Thursday, December 14, 1989
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ThufS-.Dec 14, 1989 Ouytum Prifr Hmw 3-A Metro Dayton Yellow Springs has spate of dog deaths By Chariene Lee STAFF WRITER When Lawrence Abrams' registered German Rottweiler died Monday morning, it was the latest in a rash of unusual dog deaths in Yellow Springs that have police stumped and residents angry that someone may be poisoning pets. Since late September, seven dogs have died in the village most of them owned by residents in the vicinity of North Walnut and North Winter streets. Autopsies of two dogs have indicated strychnine poisoning, and tests are being conducted on another three, including Abrams' 4'2-year-old Rottweiler, Casey. These deaths, along with an unusually high number of cat disappearances, have led to a lot of speculation but no conclusions, Yellow Springs Police Chief James McKee said. "We are investigating this. There's no indication that anyone's purposefully doing this," McKee said. He said he has heard from residents whose pets died as far back as 15 years ago. Many residents, however, believe that someone is either poisoning the dogs or illegally disposing of toxins. "There was no way he could've gotten into anything," said Dirk Ferguson, who believes his 7-year-old mixed husky, Bubba, was deliberately poisoned Nov. 18. Ferguson had chained Bubba to a backyard runner when he left for work that morning. When he returned that afternoon, Bubba had gone into convulsions and died. Julie Stutzman also suspects someone poisoned her two dogs Toodie, a 4-year-old, 70-pound mixed breed, and Max, a year-old toy fox terrier. They died Sept. 28, and autopsies showed both died from strychnine poisoning. The deaths were hard on the family, Stutzman said, because two of their dogs had simultaneously and mysteriously died five years ago. When it happened again, they were suspicious and ordered autopsies. "It made us real worried, because the police were asking, 'Is there OF h W MINISTRY I WALL Y NELSOIfSTAFF PHOTOGRAPHER The Rev. Ed Saunders stands before the Horizon of Hope on East Fourth Street, his latest venture in offering a helping hand Hope founder: No easy steps to giving From the outside, "it doesn't say much," the Rev. Ed Saunders says of the 146-year-old, red brick church at 1420 E. Fourth St. in the St. Anne's Hill Historical District. But what comes from inside the Horizon of Hope Ministry says a lot. "If you can feed the poor and homeless and do something that consistently helps others, it leaves its mark," Saunders says. "I'm not trying to create a new manual on the subject, but if we can provide breakfast and supper seven days a week for people off the streets and good child care, this is what people need. "I think we're in the right spot now. We didn't plan it that way. It just evolved that way." Not everything in the church, which Saunders purchased in 1988 for $93,000, is convenient. Those attending 1 1:30 a.m. Sunday worship services, for instance, must climb 34 steps to the 450-seat sanctuary. Perhaps that explains why congregations have been no larger than 60. "There are no three easy steps to finding Christ here," Saunders says. Nor has the 51 -year-old former pastor of the Enon Church of the Nazarene discovered any easy steps to helping people. In the late 1970s, Saunders ran a home for delinquent youths in Enon. He also ran into trouble from neighbors and Clark County of- MICKEY DAVIS ficials there. They forced him into court over a zoning dispute, and after almost four years of legal battles involving the Horizon House group home, church and a day-care center, the operation folded. Then an arsonist nearly destroyed Saunders' dream. Subsequently, Horizon of Hope Ministries Inc. filed a $2 million damage suit against Clark County and several of its officials in May 1982. U.S. District Court awarded the decision to Horizon of Hope, with the parties settling out of court. "We owned five acres in Enon and it was a perfect setting for us," Saunders says, f'but we were in a no-win situation there. There were no existing laws against group homes in Clark County, and what happened there polarized the community. That's why we're in the right spot now. Dayton ministers wanted us, and we wanted to be in Dayton." Saunders, who lives now in Waynesville where he owns a restaurant and an antique shop, commutes daily to Horizon of Hope to oversee its operation and programs. He's the administrator of the Horizon of Hope, which has 18 pre-school youngsters in its day-care center. The center, which was li censed in July, costs $49 per week. On a carpeted floor, children play with new toys. A tall Christmas tree glows nearby. Indeed this is a cozy place brimming with warmth. "We want to meet the total needs of everyone," says Bev Hudson, an administrative assistant who supervises the day-care center and also is the church organist. Horizon of Hope currently provides free breakfasts Monday through Friday from 8 to 1 1 a.m. and free suppers Friday at 6 p.m. It plans to expand those services to every day next year. Clothes also are provided to those in need. "We don't want to turn anyone away," says Saunders, whose Horizon of Hope ministry formerly was at 171 1 E. Third St. from 1981 to 1982 and at 402 Salem Ave. from 1982 to 1984. "People ask all the time what I've learned from my experience in Springfield," he says, "and I always tell them, 'You can win if you're right.' There were a number of years that I questioned if I was right enough, but life is a series of challenges and throughout our battles, people have been good to us, the Lord has been good to us and I have much to be thankful for." Steak house shooting like a horror story revisited By Dwayne Bray STAFF WRITER Tuesday's news that an assistant manager of Ryan's Family Steak House in Kettering had been fatally shot during a robbery was all too familiar to Vem and Maureen Sutton of Dayton. Sutton's 29-year-old sister, Marlene Wendenfeller. died about three Wendenfeller months ago during a robbery of the Jacksonville, Fla., Ryan's Steak House where she worked as a waitress. Mrs. Wendenfeller was shot in the head Aug. 25 after walking into the restaurant's office during a holdup. Kevin R. McQuillen, 35, was killed at the Kettering restaurant. Maureen Sutton said the parallels of the two incidents simply overwhelmed them. Police say both shootings occurred about the same time of night. "I couldn't believe that the same thing had happened," Mrs. Sutton said from the couple's Blackley Avenue home Wednesday moming. "You can't help but wonder what gave this guy (in Kettering) this idea." Jeff Caldwell, Kettering police public information officer, said there is no reason to believe the two incidents are connected. John T. Lauterbach, 22, of 3 1 1 Car ter's Grove in Centerville, was charged with aggravated murder and aggravated robbery by Kettering police Wednesday in connection with the homicide. A former employee at the Kettering Ryan's Steak House, Lauterbach surrendered to police in Lackawanna, N.Y., Tuesday night. He is to be arraigned today in Lackawanna. McQuillen was shot sometime after closing the restaurant Monday night. The store's manager found his frozen body face down in the meat cooler Tuesday morning. Money was taken from the restaurant's safe. Police also suspect robbery in the Jacksonville homicide. Mrs. Wendenfeller went into the manager's office after hearing commotion in the room, police said. When she entered the office, manager Don Langoff was bleeding from a bullet wound in the stomach. A robber immediately shot Mrs. Wendenfeller. About $200 was taken, Mrs. Sutton said. Wednesday, about three months after the Jacksonville incident, Mrs. Sutton's eyes still welled up with tears as she discussed her sister-in law who was married and had a 3-year-old son. "One death is too many," she said, "two is ridiculous. Darrell Whitaker, a spokesman from Ryan's Steak House headquarters in Greer, S.C., said the company has taken efforts to make sure its employees know what to do in robbery situations. someone who doesn't like you?' " Stutzman said. Although the Stutzmans do not live on the north end of the village, they own a garden center there. Stutzman said her husband, Gary, had taken Toodie and Max for a walk in that area the night before their deaths. McKee said strychnine is not readily available in large quantities in Yellow Springs. He said commercial rat poisons no longer use the toxin. According to Dr. Scott Hosket, a Yellow Springs veterinarian who saw several of the recent cases, a dog's reaction to strychnine, which acts on the nervous system, varies, depending on the amount ingested and the dog's size. A lethal dose is about 0.3 milligram for each pound the dog weighs, he added. Early poisoning symptoms '.neiude excitability and tense, hard muscles. "You walk up to the dog and yell or clap, and he'll go crazy," Hosket noted. Once the dog goes into convulsions and its lips start turning blue, it is too late to save it, he said. House arrest failed to confine robbery suspect ByRobModic STAFF WRITER A Dayton man under house arrest with a special bracelet designed to track his whereabouts was arrested within a block of his home in connection with the robbery of a pizza delivery man. Police arrested Shawn E. Bolding, of 144 Lexington Ave., Tuesday evening after the robbery, Montgomery County Sheriff Gary Haines said. Bolding was released from the Dayton-Montgomery County Jail Oct. 16 to relieve overcrowding there and was confined to his home. The jail is under a federal court order not to exceed capacity. On Dec. 4, the day his trial was scheduled to begin, Bolding pleaded guilty to a charge of receiving stolen property. He was awaiting sentencing or possibly probation at a Jan. 3 hearing. "This is not one of the more brilliant thieves," Haines said. The house-arrest system involves locking a bracelet with a transmitter on a defendant's wrist. A Cincinnati firm monitors the transmitter through phone lines. If the defendant moves a certain distance from the phone, the reception is broken and deputies are sent to check the home. Of nearly 100 jail inmates put under house arrest since the program began several months ago, Bolding is the first to commit a crime while so detained, Haines said. Deputy John Clymer said only seven inmates have escaped or been reported absent by the system. "We're one of the first agencies in the area to use it for felonies," Haines said. On Thursday, Bolding was ordered held in jail in lieu of $50,000 bond. City parks may ban j beer sales at festivals By Rosemary Harry STAFF WRITER Organizers of neighborhood festivals, parties and outdoor concerts may see a drought of a different kind this summer if a proposal to ban beer sales in Dayton city parks and recreation centers goes forward. The city's Division of Human and Neighborhood Resources, which oversees parks, wants the city to ban the sale and consumption of beer to eliminate the city's potential liability in alcohol-related accidents. Michael Alexinas, the division's deputy director, said the number of requests for special permits for beer sales is rising sharply. And the groups are seeking permits for a longer period several days instead of one day. Alexinas had no statistics on arrests or disturbances, and the city hasn't been sued because of an alcohol-related incident. But he said that's not what prompted the proposal. "There's concern that with the number of events there's a better likelihood that something may happen," Alexinas said. Many non-profit groups sell beer during outdoor summertime events, including the Dayton River Festival, neighborhood festivals like the Mountain Days Appalachian festival, and concerts including the Women in Jazz Festival. City Commissioners appear to be split on the issue. Commissioner Abner Orick wants a ban because he believes the city encourages public drinking and intoxication by allowing beer in parks. Orick said, "We have bars. City parks are not the appropriate place to partake of alcoholic beverages." Mayor Richard Clay Dixon doesn't believe a ban is necessary because the number of disturbances doesn't justify a ban. Commissioner Richard Zimmer said the city should look at other ways of making sure accidents don't happen. "For the most part, the people conduct themselves well," Zimmer said. Tom Ritchie, an ALF-CIO official who also coordinates the Mountain Days festival, said beer was sold at the festival in Eastwood Park last August and no disturbances occurred. The festival carried its own insurance and provided extra security last year, he said, so the city was protected. "If we see someone who's getting intoxicated, we cut them off," Ritchie said. "We're not going to expose this community to people who are intoxicated." Deputy 'buddy bears' to patrol Greene as kids' trauma team By Jim Dillon GREENE COUNTY BUREAU The Greene County sheriff's department has enlisted a few good teddy bears to help frightened or traumatized children. Starting Saturday, all sheriff's cars will carry two teddy bears that deputies can give children who need the immediate comfort only a cuddly stuffed animal can sometimes offer, Deputy Helen Holmes said. The children will keep the toys and perhaps feel a bit more secure in dealing with the accident, fire or other event that has frightened or hurt them, Holmes said. "We think it's a great idea and we're all for it," Holmes said. "We've got 80 bears right now, and we'll try it for a year to see how it works out." The Buddy Bear program is the brainchild of the Wanderers Extension Homemaker Club, a group of nine Greene County women who have been friends for years. Debbie Smith of Fairborn, a member of Wanderers, said the bears won't take away the long-term pain a hurt child may feel. But she said the bears should help for a short while. She said the Wanderers approached the sheriffs department with the idea about a year ago. The group held fund-raisers and used the proceeds to buy 80 teddy bears. The group has since made 50 or so miniature T-shirts with the words "Buddy Bear" printed on them for the bears to wear. "I guess we all would appreciate it if someone would give our children a toy bear to hold if something traumatic happened to them," Smith said. The program also might help change the negative image some kids have of sheriff's deputies and their work. "We have feelings, too," Holmes said, "and we want to help these children." "But the main goal is to comfort frightened children in times of trauma," Smith said. "And if we only reach two or three children, it still will be worth it."

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