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Crime

Racist business owner sentenced for viral road rage exchange

614now Staff

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Remember the racist business owner who was caught on video calling a black man the ‘n-word’ last summer? We’ve got an update on him.

Jeffrey Whitman, owner of Uriah’s Heating and Cooling, pleaded guilty to ethnic intimidation, a reduction from the original disorderly conduct charge, reports NBC4i. He was given a six-month suspended jail sentence and a $500 fine for the road rage episode.

The victim, Charles Lovett, is disappointed with the sentencing and wishes Whitman would’ve been given more jail time.

The July incident stemmed from Whitman believing Lovett had cut him off in Morse Road traffic near I-71 and Sinclair Road.

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“I just want to let you know what a n****r you are,” Whitman said to Lovett from his company van.

Lovett captured the encounter on video and posted it to Facebook where it quickly went viral.

So this is happened to me this morning. A man followed me from the interstate exit to my house, and then proceeded to berate me with the most disrespectful word to any African American. I wasn’t going to post it, because I felt that I should’ve known and did better in handling the situation, by just walking away and going into my house. But I’m human. Nobody, African American Mexican Puerto Rican deserves what’s been happening to us across the United States here lately. This incident is just one of many sadly. 😔 #IamBetterThanThis #UriahsHeatingAndCooling (if you’re in Columbus, OH; you can watch it and my interview tonight on NBC4 & ABC6 & FOX28 tonight)

Posted by Charles Lovett on Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Soon after the altercation, NBC4i caught up with Whitman who told reporters he did not regret calling Lovett the ‘n-word.’ He’s since changed his mind.

“I would like to apologize to Mr. Lovett and his family. What I’ve done, and, ugh, I deeply regret it, and it is genuine,” said Whitman in court.

Also in court, Whitman admitted to losing his $400,000 a year business and is looking into filing bankruptcy.

Whitman’s lawyer Mark Collins said he had received professional help, counseling, and participated in outreach with the African American community.

Lovett has since gotten his Concealed Carry Permit because he says he lives in fear, reports NBC4i.

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Crime

At least 6 dogs affected by suspected poisoning attack on local neighborhood

Regina Fox

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Several dogs are sick and a few have even died in a case being investigated by Columbus Humane as a possible poisoning attack in North Linden.

Gypsy was the registered support animal of Hannah Broadway, reports NBC4i. A Facebook post that Broadway was tagged it revealed Gypsy was discovered in a pool of her own blood, having suffered organ ruptures. She ultimately died from internal bleeding.

Broadway then posted an update of her own, saying she is "still at a loss for words as to what happened."

https://www.facebook.com/hannah.broadway.73/posts/10157641591476675

But, before Gypsy or any of the other dogs got sick, an anonymous person made threats to another pet owner in the area.

Broadway's neighbor Elaine Putnam received a letter in the mail with no return address, threatening to give her dog "a couple rat poison meatballs" if she didn't get her dog to stop barking.

Putnam believes the person who sent the letter is also the person targeting other local animals.

The Franklin County Animal Care and Control anticipates more dogs in the area to show signs of being possibly poisoned. They advise dog owners to survey the yard before taking them out to use the bathroom.

Samples from the effected dogs are currently being tested to confirm or deny poisoning.

Columbus Humane is asking that anyone with any information come forward.

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Crime

Grandview-area shooting leaves 2 in critical condition

614now Staff

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A shooting near Grandview Heights early this morning left two people in critical condition.

Around 12:05am, a report came in about gun shots. Columbus police arrived on the scene to find two individuals with multiple gunshots near the Grandview Carry Out at 1355 Grandview Ave.

The victims were transported to local hospitals and are undergoing emergency surgery, reports 10TV.

Police continue to search for a suspect.

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Crime

South Columbus machete robber still on the loose

Regina Fox

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A man is on the loose after allegedly attempting to rob two Donatos Pizza employees with a machete in south Columbus on Saturday.

According to 10TV, Columbus police say an unknown male carrying a machete entered the Donatos in the 1000 block of Thurman Avenue around 11:10am.

He approached an employee and demanded money from the register. The employee did not comply despite the suspect threatening to kill him.

The suspect then demanded money from a delivery driver in the parking lot. This employee refused, also.

Police say the suspect fled on foot and was last seen running northbound in the alley and turning westbound between houses around the area of 1267 Oakwood Drive.

The suspect is described as a white male between 20-40 years old, 150 pounds and 5'6". 10TV adds he had a black eye on the right and a shiny area on his face that appeared to be a skin graft.

Anyone with information on this incident or suspect is asked to contact Columbus Police Robbery Unit at (614) 645-4665 or Central Ohio Crime Stoppers at (614) 461-TIPS.

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