Ohio News Briefs

Akron mayor admits to inappropriate behavior with employee

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — The recently appointed mayor of Akron says he acted inappropriately with a female city employee when she tried to congratulate him on his new job and he will not seek election to the office this fall as he’d previously announced.

Garry Moneypenny said at a news conference Friday that while hugging the woman, he “turned a goodbye hug into a too-personal encounter” and that he crossed a “professional and personal boundary.” He said the woman reported the incident to the city’s human resources department and that people were aware of it.

Moneypenny, a Democrat who’d been serving as council president, officially became mayor June 1 after Don Plusquellic decided to retire after nearly 28 years in office. Moneypenny says he’ll serve the remainder of his term.

County auditor in corruption case indicted on 25 new counts

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) — A county auditor in northeast Ohio already charged in an ongoing corruption case has been indicted on more than two dozen additional charges including theft in office and unauthorized use of property.

A grand jury on Thursday indicted former Mahoning County Auditor Michael Sciortino on 21 counts of unauthorized use of computer or telecommunications property and four counts of theft in office.

The indictment alleges Sciortino used government-owned computers and equipment for his political campaigns and for his private law practice.

Sciortino had already been charged with 22 criminal counts in a separate case for allegedly trying to help a businessman prevent county commissioners from moving county offices out of a building owned by the businessman’s company.

Calls to Sciortino’s attorney seeking comment weren’t immediately returned.

J.C. Penney plans to hire 540 people in Columbus

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — J.C. Penney plans to add 540 jobs at its customer-care center in central Ohio.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the company plans to hire the employees over the next six months to work at its operations site in Columbus. About 1,250 employees work at the facility.

Officials say the hiring comes in anticipation of a busy back-to-school season and a growing need for online customer service. The employees are needed for several customer service positions.

A spokesman says they’re adding online customer service positions to respond to people on social media and through email.

The company announced in January that it plans to close about 40 stores in 2015 to focus on better-performing stores and to cut costs. It operates 43 stores in Ohio.

Ohio man dies after electrocuted at construction site

HEATH, Ohio (AP) — Fire officials say a central Ohio man has died after he was electrocuted at a construction site.

Heath Fire Department Captain Warren McCord says 24-year-old James Wolfe was electrocuted shortly before 3 p.m. Thursday at a construction site in Heath, east of Columbus.

McCord says Wolfe, of Newark, was an electrician. He says Wolfe had been working on a scissor lift and doing electric work when the incident occurred.

Officials say Wolfe was in cardiac arrest when first responders arrived. He was then taken to a nearby hospital, where he died.

Veterans cemetery in Ohio seeks honor squad volunteers

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — The Dayton National Cemetery wants volunteers to serve in honor squads.

Officials are planning an orientation briefing Friday afternoon followed by two hours of training at the cemetery. They say volunteers should be able to fire an M-1 Garand rifle in all types of weather and be available at least one day a week.

The cemetery was established as a veterans burial site in the aftermath of the Civil War.