ICYMI: Dog park named for Dick Goddard; Cleveland police detective killed; CDC coronavirus report

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CLEVELAND (WJW)– Here are a few of the top stories this week, in case you missed it.

Cleveland detective killed

Det. James Skernivitz, 53, was shot in the area of West 65th Street and Storer Avenue in Cleveland at about 10 p.m. Thursday. A 50-year-old man was also killed.

The Cleveland Division of Police released limited information on the shooting. Three people are in custody on unrelated charges. Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said they do not know a motive at this time.

Investigators are still seeking information on the case. Anyone with tips should call the FBI at 216-622-6842.

Skernivitz was a member of the Cleveland Division of Police for more than 20 years. He leaves behind a wife and two adult children.

Child locked in cage

Canton police began investigating suspected abuse in August 2019. Detectives found evidence a 7-year-old girl was locked in a cage in the basement as a form of punishment. It was secured with a padlock and the child weighed just 28 pounds, police said.

The child’s mother, 29-year-old Lillian Cottrell, and the mother’s boyfriend, 30-year-old Derek Mayle, were charged with child endangering.

Three children were removed from the home.

Chardon and the thin blue line

Last week, when the Chardon High School football team opened its season, one of the athlete’s carried a thin blue line flag onto the field. There were complaints about the display, prompting an investigation by Chardon Local Schools. The district concluded the carrying of the flag was not meant to be racist, rather it was intended to be a show of support for police and a Chardon coach, who is an officer.

Chardon superintendent Dr. Michael Hanlon said it could be interpreted as political speech, therefore it’s not permitted on school grounds.

The ban sparked outrage in the community, given the close bond between law enforcement and Chardon High School in the wake of the 2012 shooting that left three students dead. Geauga County Commissioner Ralph Spidalieri called for Hanlon’s resignation.

CDC report

New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about coronavirus deaths in the U.S. generated a lot of attention this week. According to the report, 6 percent of the deaths have COVID-19 as the only cause mentioned, while 94 percent of the patients who died had other health conditions and contributing causes.

Top conditions include influenza and pneumonia, respiratory failure, diabetes, cardiac arrest, heart failure and renal failure.

Dick Goddard dog park

We like to end on a positive note. The city of Vermilion is planning a tribute to legendary FOX 8 meteorologist Dick Goddard, who died on Aug. 4 at the age of 89. The city, which hosts the annual Woollybear Festival, will name a dog park after Mr. G.

Goddard, a staunch supporter of animal welfare, helped create the Woollybear Festival in 1973. It’s now the largest one-day festival in Ohio.

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