OFD sees recent jump in alcohol EMS runs

During a weekend jam-packed with events — the conclusion of sorority recruitment, Miami University’s 2018 Charter Day Ball and Brick Street Bar & Grill’s 6 a.m. opening for the Winter Olympics U.S. v. Russia men’s hockey game — 24 individuals were transported to the hospital for alcohol-and-drug-related EMS calls. That’s more substance-related calls than the Oxford Fire Department (OFD) had seen in the two previous weekends combined. The calls occurred from Thursday, Feb. 15 through Sunday, Feb. 18. Eighteen of the alcohol-and-drug-related calls were for underage individuals, according to the OFD’s count record system. There were 53 total EMS runs that weekend, said OFD chief John Detherage. Of the 24 alcohol-and-drug-related runs, 14 were male and 10 female. In comparison, the department responded to 14 alcohol-and-drug-related calls during the first weekend of this semester and just five substance-related calls from Feb. 8 to Feb. 11. Last year, President Greg Crawford called for an emergency meeting among fraternity and sorority leaders after 21 students were hospitalized from Thursday, Feb. 9 through Sunday, Feb. 12 — the weekend that followed Greek recruitment season for the 2016-17 school year.  Of those 21 hospitalizations, 17 were females and four were males. This year, no such meeting was called. On Tuesday, amid reports of hazing allegations, Miami University’s Interfraternity Council (IFC) decided to suspend all fraternity activities and ended the new member initiation period...

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NIOT leaders start to organize initiative

Oxford’s Senior Citizens building was open briefly on Sunday afternoon, a rarity for the center, which is usually closed on the weekends. Inside the main room, long tables were pushed together and latecomers sat in circular tables in the back. The second meeting to organize Oxford and Miami University’s involvement in the national Not In Our Town (NIOT) initiative was about to begin. At one of tables, two of the Kramer Elementary third graders who spoke at last week’s meeting, Noel and Oliver, scribbled intently, quietly whispering to each other about whether or not their motto should be “Love....

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Oxford holds ‘Not in Our Town’ interest meeting

On Sunday afternoon, three students from Ms. Pearson’s third-grade class in Kramer Elementary — Noel, Oliver and Paul — stood in front of a group of mostly strangers. The boys shuffled back and forth in front of the crowded community room of the LCNB National Bank but spoke with passion and wisdom beyond their years. Noel waved his hands together with enthusiasm, sporting a “Black is Beautiful” t-shirt, and spoke in front of a group of Oxford and Miami University leaders including Mayor Kate Rousmaniere, Renate Crawford and city council member Chantel Raghu. “I first heard about white nationalism on the radio and thought that was something I didn’t want to happen to anyone else,” Noel said. “You know, my dad immigrated from Cuba and married my mom, and then they had me, but I don’t want white nationalism to stop anyone else from being able to do that.” The boys explained that, throughout the past several months, they created a series of videos and surveys and a website dedicated to educating their fellow classmates about the perils of hate speech, racism and prejudice against people who are different from themselves. Rousmaniere, alongside Miami’s director of the Office of Community Engagement Services (OCES), Christie Zwahlen, and Oxford residents Sabrina Jewell and Ellen Weisman organized for the boys to speak Uptown on Feb. 11 during a “Not In Our Town”...

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Former Miami student Nicolas Cristescu sentenced to five years in prison for sexual imposition

Former Miami student Nicolas Cristescu was sentenced to five years in prison for a felony charge of gross sexual imposition Monday in the Butler County Court of Common Pleas. Cristescu, 20, was originally indicted for rape, sexual battery and 11 counts of voyeurism after allegedly drugging, raping and filming an unconscious woman in his Heritage Commons residence in the hours between Oct. 11 and Oct. 12. As part of a plea bargain, Cristescu pleaded guilty to the amended charge of gross sexual imposition in December. The charges for voyeurism and sexual battery were dismissed. The five-year sentence which Judge Michael Oster ordered is the maximum sentence for gross sexual imposition, a third degree felony. Oster also ruled that Cristescu be registered as a Tier I sexual offender, requiring Cristescu to register every 12 months for a period of 15 years. As part of the plea bargain, Oster said, he was directed to view and watch the photos and videos of the victim. After seeing the footage, he said, he knew he was watching someone being raped. “This perpetrator knew exactly what he was doing,” Oster said. During Cristescu’s allocution — the formal statement a guilty defendant is allowed to make before being sentenced — he cited the events of Oct. 11-12 as the “biggest mistake of [his] life,” and said he had consumed alcohol and Xanax the night of...

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