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  • A man already charged in a blaze that killed seven people in May has been indicted on aggravated murder charges in that fire and in a second fire that killed two people on the same Ohio street last year, prosecutors said Thursday. A Summit County grand jury on Thursday indicted Stanley Ford, 58, in the May 15 fire in Akron that killed two adults and five children, county prosecutors said. Ford had pleaded not guilty to charges including aggravated murder after his May arrest in that blaze and remains jailed on $7 million bond. The grand jury also indicted the Akron man in an April 2016 fire that killed 66-year-old Lindell Lewis and 65-year-old Gloria Hart and in a vehicle fire on another street in January that didn't involve injuries, authorities said. One of the attorneys representing Ford said Thursday that Ford maintains he is innocent. 'We look forward to reviewing the evidence and defending him in court,' defense attorney Joseph Gorman said. Prosecutors say all three fires were within a block of Ford's home. They wouldn't comment on a possible motive in the fires and said they were unable to discuss evidence in the case. 'Never before in Summit County history has one man been charged with the murders of nine people,' Criminal Chief Assistant Prosecutor Margaret Scott said. In both fatal fires, the victims were trapped and overcome by smoke with no way to escape, Scott said. 'Their deaths are a horrific tragedy, which not only impacted these families, but the entire neighborhood and community,' Scott said. Those killed in the May 2017 fire were 35-year-old Dennis Huggins, his partner, 38-year-old Angela Boggs, and five children: 14-year-old Jered Boggs, 6-year-old Daisia Huggins, 5-year-old Kylle Huggins, 3-year-old Alivia Huggins and 16-month-old Cameron Huggins. In the 2016 fire that killed Lewis and Hart, a third person escaped and survived, authorities said. In addition to multiple counts of aggravated murder, Ford was indicted on attempted aggravated murder, aggravated arson, arson, aggravated menacing and cruelty to animals charges. Ford could receive the death penalty if convicted on the aggravated murder counts, prosecutors said. Gorman said that he and co-counsel Donald Malarcik are disappointed that the indictment contains death penalty specifications. 'We don't believe the death penalty is right in any situation,' Gorman said. He also said they don't believe a potential death penalty, if Ford were to be convicted, would be 'prudent,' given Ford's age and the additional expense involved in a capital case, which usually includes a lengthy appeals process. Ford is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 2.
  • The DeKalb County sheriff is now banned from all Atlanta city parks after reaching a plea deal in his arrest for indecency. Channel 2's Nicole Carr has been digging into the case against DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann since his May arrest in Piedmont Park on indecency and obstruction charges for allegedly exposing himself and running from police. Carr obtained a state report that detailed how Mann admitted to using taxpayer resources and time during his indecent exposure arrest. Mann took a plea deal Thursday, pleading guilty to slightly different charges than he was originally charged with. Mann originally faced indecency and obstruction charges for his May 6 arrest in Piedmont Park, where he was accused of exposing his private parts and running from police. He does not deny running from police. But he also pleaded guilty to lesser disorderly and prohibited conduct charges. Mann is now banned from all city of Atlanta parks for six months. He was ordered to pay a $2,000 fine to the courts right after the hearing and was ordered to complete 80 hours of community service. TRENDING STORIES: Man in custody in grandmother's disappearance Teen charged in crash that killed recent high school graduate Hospital denies mother's faith-based healthcare coverage Handcuffed man escapes custody, roams neighborhood for days That service was completed during his state-issued suspension this month and a state-approved sex offender treatment provider decided he didn't need counseling. 'It's a win for Sheriff Mann but an assurance to the city that Sheriff Mann isn't a further danger to anyone in the park,' Channel 2 legal analyst Esther Panitch told Carr. 'He got weak, and I know all have sinned and come short of the glory of God when you're not really praying and he was not praying that night,' said Pastor Cal Murrell. Supporters said the guilty plea has left questions about his role as sheriff. 'I'm contemplating that, but I want his family to be free,' Murrell said. Mann left court from a side exit. His attorney, Noah Pines, wouldn't talk about the change in admitting guilt. 'I'm not talking, so you can do whatever you want,' Pines said. 'So you're not going to talk about why the plea was changed?' Carr asked Pines. Pines didn't answer Carr. Carr filed an open records request to get the state report used to suspend Mann over the summer. Unlike previous statements, Mann admitted what happened in the park wasn't 'personal time,' that he was in a 'county-issued vehicle' and never should have run from the officer, the document showed. The committee saw a 'conflict of evidence' based on the sheriff's statements, but his attorney continued to 'deny the indecency allegations. ' This is still an open case as far as law enforcement is concerned. We know he is back this week from a governor-issued 40-day suspension, but POST, the agency that accredits law enforcement in Georgia, has their own open investigation in the incident.
  • Authorities are warning people about a terrifying extortion scam that's on the rise. Investigators told Channel 2's Tom Regan that callers are demanding ransom, claiming they are holding a loved one hostage. A Cherokee County woman told Regan about how she was ordered to send MoneyGrams from a Kroger and a Walmart. She said at the time she was so afraid, and so rattled by the alleged abductors, she couldn't think rationally. 'I don't want anyone to experience the complete terror I experienced Monday night,' the woman told Regan, asking not to be identified. The victim said the whole thing began with a call to her cellphone while she was on the way home from work saying her husband accidently ran over someone leaving a gas station, but didn't want the police involved. 'We are here illegally, Me and my brother have warrants out for our arrest for manslaughter,' the victim said the caller told her. 'If you don't follow my instructions, I'm going to kill your husband.' TRENDING STORIES: Man in custody in grandmother's disappearance DeKalb Sheriff banned from all parks as part of guilty plea Doctors want to set the record straight on 'dry drowning' The caller then ordered her to send $2,700 in money orders to an address in Puerto Rico. The person told her to stay on the phone the whole time and to not contact anyone. 'When I went to my phone to text, I got a message saying, 'Don't touch your phone,'' the victim said. 'It all hits you so quickly, and your emotions are going in so many different directions. It was completely terrifying.' Many have fallen prey to the virtual hostage scam. Authorities say extortionists, usually from outside the U.S., find the names and phone numbers of their victims on social media. The Cherokee County victim told Regan as she was talking to one extortionist, another was calling in on a separate line to keep her phone blocked. Regan called the number on Thursday, but it no longer worked. The victim's word of advice for others: 'If you get a phone call like that just hang up. Call your loved one and police.' Police said these cases are nearly impossible to prosecute because the scammers are typically calling from outside the country.
  • We're learning new information about a cold case from 2013. Fulton County police tell us they believe a shooting at a home in College Park was not a random attack. TRENDING STORIES: Grandson charged in woman's 'highly suspicious' disappearance Hospital denies mother's faith-based healthcare coverage DeKalb Sheriff banned from all parks as part of guilty plea On the night of November 3, authorities found the body of Mack Summers, 44, in a pool of blood. Summers had been shot one time in the head, police say. The detail that police say made a difference in their investigation, on Channel 2 Action News Nightbeat at 11.
  • When Cena the military service dog was reunited with his first handler, Lance Cpl. Jeffrey DeYoung, it was an emotional moment. The two had been separated for over three years without the chance to say goodbye. When Cena returned from Afghanistan, DeYoung took the dog in. >> Read more trending news On Wednesday, the Marine said goodbye to his friend who was there with him when he lost seven friends in three weeks to enemies in the Middle East. A large crowd of people came out to honor the 10-year-old black Labrador as DeYoung took him to be put down, Michigan Live reports. After he passed, DeYoung carried out a coffin draped in an American flag and carrying the body of his companion. Cena was diagnosed with an aggressive form of bone cancer and DeYoung made the decision to put him down. On Tuesday, DeYoung wrote a Facebook post explaining the situation and saying goodbye to his friend. The Marine wrote “[Cena] has blessed my life with love and admiration, happiness and strength. Because of him I got to have a family.” In a tear-jerking goodbye, he closed with “goodnight my friend, goodbye my brother. May you rest your head tonight knowing how loved you are and how dearly you will be missed.”
  • Matt Kuchar fought dizzy spells in the first round of the RBC Canadian Open on Thursday, four days after finishing second behind Jordan Spieth in the British Open. 'I had a couple of spells where I got a little bit of dizzy and I feel weak,' Kuchar said. 'I don't know where it came from. I've had plenty of time to get over the travel. Hopefully, it's just something that passes real quick. ... I shook it off the couple times it happened.' The 39-year-old American became dizzy marking a ball and sought medical attention during the morning round at Glen Abbey. After playing the first 11 holes in 4 under, he made a double bogey on the par-4 third and bogeyed the par-4 eighth en route to a 1-under 71. Kuchar was six strokes behind leaders Kevin Chappell, Matt Every, Hudson Swafford, Brandon Hagy and Ollie Schniederjans in the round that was suspended because of darkness after afternoon play was interrupted for nearly two hours by lightning and rain. 'He had been over to mark a putt after he missed it and got a little light-headed,' said playing partner Bubba Watson, a stroke back after a 66. 'He just came up a little slow. I don't know why. It's a little warm after the rain. Had a rain jacket on. Probably just a little light-headed. And then the travel. He played over there, a lot of energy used last week. Second place is a lot of energy used over that and then flying back over here with the time change, probably just one of those things. Maybe a little dehydrated.' Kuchar has an endorsement deal with tournament sponsor RBC. On Sunday at Royal Birkdale in England, he finished three strokes behind Spieth. Kuchar had a one-stroke lead with five holes to play before Spieth rallied and pulled away with a birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie stretch. Defending champion Jhonattan Vegas, Vijay Singh, Jim Herman, Peter Malnati and Martin Flores matched Watson at 66. Top-ranked Dustin Johnson had a 67. He eagled the par-5 13th and had six birdies and three bogeys. 'Just had a few putts lip out on the back, and then, just didn't drive it well the back nine,' Johnson said. 'But when I did drive it in the fairway, I had good holes. I'm swinging really well, especially with the irons. ... Tomorrow, I just need to go out in the morning and hit a few more fairways.' Chappell had two eagles, playing alongside fellow leader Every in the afternoon. Chappell made a 12-foot putt from the fringe on the par-5 16th for his first eagle and holed a 15-footer from the fringe on the par-5 second. 'Doesn't happen too often, but I'm glad it happened today,' Chappell said. 'I hit it really well. Got the ball in play on the par 5s, so I was able to attack those.' Schniederjans also had two eagles. He chipped in on 13 and made a 15-footer on 18. 'I took advantage of the par 5s and just played real consistently well off the tee,' Schneiderjans said. 'I was in good positions all day. Just a solid round.' Mackenzie Hughes topped the 17 Canadians at 67. 'If you hit it in the fairway, you can be aggressive,' Hughes said. 'The few fairways I missed, I was just trying to make par and you have to be a little bit defensive. All in all it was a great day. Probably could be a bit better, but I made a couple nice par putts, too. Overall, happy with my start.' Fourteen players were unable to finish. Kramer Hickok led the group at 5 under with a hole left.