Jim Letizia

Reporter, News Anchor

Jim has been with WCBE since 1996. Before that he worked as a reporter at another Columbus radio station, and for three newspapers in Southwest Florida.

Ways to Connect

A Columbus swimming pool remains still closed due to a lifeguard shortage.  Columbus Recreation and Parks department officials say they had to delay opening Lincoln Pool Monday because they have only half the lifeguards needed. There are enough guards trained, but they're still in the city's hiring pipeline. Lincoln Pool could open for the first time in three years as early as tomorrow. 

Ohio State University is paying football coach Urban Meyer 4 million dollars per year, and his contract includes specific requirements for reporting violations of NCAA rules. The university has completed a seven-year contract with Meyer the board of trustees is expected to approve later this week. Details of the deal were released on Monday. Meyer's contract guarantees him a chance to make significantly more money through bonuses and youth camps.

Athens County sheriff's deputies have arrested a 52-year-old Guysville man following a three-hour standoff at his home on Monday. Deputies say the unnamed man called a crisis center, said he had a weapon, and threatened to force authorities to kill him if they responded. Deputies say no firearms were found but the man was using a screw driver and railroad spikes as weapons. He is being evaluated. 

Columbus Police have taken four men into custody for questioning in connection with a fatal shooting last night on the South Side. Police say 57-year-old Jesse Ratcliff was shot and killed on West Castle Road following a fight between family members. Police say Ratcliff went to a relative's home, and returned to his house to get a shotgun following the fight. 

A man has been arrested in connection with Monday's on-campus stabbing of a part-time Columbus State Community College professor. 45-year-old Isaac Rotich was arrested for stabbing statistics professor Kip Mengich, who is hospitalized in stable condition. School officials say they lack a motive in the case, but believe Rotich knew Mengich, who was stabbed in the lobby of Davidson Hall. 


Columbus City Council is expected to vote later this month on proposed legislation addressing the code and safety issues that forced the Pearl Market to scale back last summer. Jim Letizia reports. 

June is National Gay Pride month, and Columbus' gay pride parade is scheduled for Saturday at noon. The parade will run on High Street from Broad to Buttles. Karla Rothan of Stonewall Columbus says more than 200-thousand people are expected to participate in the parade and other pride events. Those events culminate with the pride brunch on Sunday in downtown Columbus.

Nancy Pelosi and Eric Cantor are tops among the U.S. House leadership in personal wealth. Federal financial disclosure forms reveal Democratic Minority Leader Pelosi is worth 40 to 187-million dollars. Republican Majority Leader Cantor is worth four to nine-point-six-million dollars. Most of Pelosi's assets are based on real estate holdings, while Cantor lists real estate and stocks on his form. House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio reports assets worth as much as five-point-four million dollars. The Republican cited investments in stocks and bonds in his disclosure form.  

Penn National Gaming says it hopes to get the necessary permits and state approval by September in order to move thoroughbred racing from Beulah Park to a new track near Youngstown. The facility would open in early 2014. Construction on the 125 million dollar project is expected to begin this fall. Officials plan to coordinate race dates to avoid direct competition with Thistledown in the Cleveland area, A racetrack that may move to the Akron area. 

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services says the state's seasonally adjusted jobless rate fell from 7.4 percent in April to 7.3 percent in May. Non-farm payrolls rose by nearly 20-thousand from April. The department says 426-thousand Ohioans were out of work in May, down by 5-thousand from April. The state added 64-hundred jobs in manufacturing, 45-hundred jobs in professional and business services and 43-hundred jobs in educational and health services. 

A Cuayhoga County judge has ruled a death row inmate is not mentally competent to be executed for killing his wife and brother-in-law. Today's ruling comes a week after Governor John Kasich ordered a last-minute reprieve for Abdul Awkal. During several days of testimony, his attorneys argued he is so mentally ill he believes the CIA is orchestrating his execution. Awkal is convicted of killing his estranged wife and brother-in-law in a county courthouse in 1992 as the couple prepared to divorce. 

State law gives Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson control of that city's school district. Jackson says he will place a levy before voters in November, now that state lawmakers have approved his plan to reform the district. A provision of the reform plan allows local tax money to be shared with charter schools sponsored by the Cleveland district or partner schools. The plan also changes the way teachers are evaluated. 

Columbus city officials say more than 22-thousand-dollars in tipping fees to the local landfill were saved when the city's curbside recycling program was launched earlier this month. The city says four hundred tons of recyclables were collected on the first day of the program. 

Bond is set at 500-thousand dollars for the Gahanna man accused of stabbing and wounding his teen girlfriend's father. 20-year-old Robert Best is accused of stabbing 46-year-old Alan Dillman. Prosecutors say Best and 16-year-old Grace Dillman plotted the stabbing. Prosecutors say Grace Dillman wanted both of her parents dead because they did not approve of the relationship. She is due in court later this month. 

State lawmakers have approved a plan to convey land-grant status on Central State University. The change was first proposed 120 years ago but scuttled by former President Rutherford B. Hayes. It's now up to Congress to make the historically black school in Wilberforce the second land-grant college in state history. Such status avails Central State of millions in federal funding.  


The amnesty program allowing Ohioans behind on their state taxes to clear their obligations without penalties is ending today. Those who qualify will be able to pay back taxes without penalties and half the interest owed. The Department of Taxation says the state collected more than 60 million dollars in past-due taxes during the last amnesty program in 2006.  


Westerville police have released more information on the death of a teenager. Police say the body of 15-year-old Ken Bores was found this week at a home on Cross Country. Witnesses told police Bores began having seizures while playing video games, after he ingested alcohol, marijuana and LSD.  Police say toxicology test results are pending. 

A Logan jury has recommended life in prison for the man found guilty this week of killing his estranged wife. 27-year-old Will Inman II was found guilty of killing 25-year-old Summer Inman last year. Prosecutors say she was abducted in Logan, then strangled and dumped in an underground septic tank behind an Athens County church. Inman's parents have pleaded not guilty and will be tried later this year.  

New figures show foreclosure activity in Ohio rose in May. Jim Letizia reports.

The U.S. Senate is poised to begin considering the 2012 Farm Bill. Jim Letizia reports.

Ohio is one of several states projecting increased tax revenues for the upcoming fiscal year.  Jim Letizia reports. 

States expect to collect higher tax revenues in the coming budget year that combined would top pre-recession levels, according to a survey by the National Governors Association and the National Association of State Budget Officers.

The U.S. Marine Corps is holding its annual Marine Week in downtown Cleveland this week. Nearly 800 Marines will show off their skills and equipment. Organizers say the event is expected to draw 75-thousand visitors from across the Midwest. Comments from Cleveland Police Officer Ernest Graves and Steve Zeisel of Medina, U.S. Marine veterans who served in Vietnam and the first Gulf War respectively 

Geauga County Sheriff's deputies are investigating a fatal drag racing crash at Thompson Raceway. Deputies are searching for the cause of a mechanical failure that claimed the life of Richard Moore on Sunday. Park general manager Jim Curtis says it's the first death at the facility in nearly 30 years. He comments on the crash.



Republican Congressman Steve Stivers says the U.S. Marine Corps has granted his request to take a second look at the death of a soldier from London Ohio killed by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan a year ago. The family of 21-year-old Lance Corporal Josh McDaniels and some Marines believe the circumstances of his death might have been prevented. They say work to remove trees that hid people planting roadside bombs was halted and could have helped protect troops if it had continued.Mar 

Inman found guilty

Jun 12, 2012

A Logan County jury this morning found a man guilty of killing his estranged wife last year. Jurors began deliberations late Monday in the trial of 27-year-old Will Inman, who pleaded not guilty in the slaying of 25-year-old Summer Inman. She was abducted, strangled and dumped in an underground septic tank behind an Athens County church. Sentencing is pending. Inman's parents also have pleaded not guilty and will be tried later. 

The city of Columbus plans to begin selling nearly 500-million dollars in bonds next month. Proceeds will be used for capital improvements. Jim Letizia reports.

Governor John Kasich has vetoed the idea of letting some nursing homes divide a 30-million dollar allocation from state lawmakers. Statehouse correspondent Bill Cohen explains. 

The F-B-I says the overall rate of violent crime reported last year in Columbus decreased by 5.2 percent from 2010. The agency says the decrease relfects a national trend. The F-B-I says the number of aggravated assaults in Columbus fell by by 10.1 percent, rapes fell by 1.5 percent, and homicides fell by 12.4 percent. The agency says nationally, rapes and aggravated assaults fell by 4 percent, while homicides fell by 1.9 percent. 

Columbus-based NetJets plans to purchase 425 new aircraft from Cessna and Bombardier for 9.6 billion dollars. C-E-O Jordan Hansell says the deals are part of NetJets' 10-year plan. The company has placed firm orders for 125 aircraft so far. Hansell says they will be faster and more fuel-efficient and have a longer range. 

A Logan County jury is scheduled to resume deliberations today in the trial of a man charged with killing his estranged wife. Will Inman has pleaded not guilty to aggravated murder and other charges in the slaying of 25-year-old Summer Inman. Prosecutors say she was abducted, strangled and dumped in an underground septic tank behind an Athens County church last year. Inman's parents also have pleaded not guilty and will be tried later.