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Columbus Council President Calls For Police Reforms

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A Cincinnati police officer escaped injury when his helmet was struck by a bullet during a police brutality protest early Sunday while in Columbus a fire considered suspicious destroyed a nearly completed apartment building. 

The fire at the four-story Residences at Topiary Park burned for hours, causing part of the roof and several floors to collapse. An attempt was made to set fire to another apartment building under construction next door. Police deployed pepper spray against protestors at the Statehouse last night after they say they were pelted  by water bottles. Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin tweeted that he, Congresswoman Joyce Beatty, and Franklin County Commissioner Kevin Boyce were hit with pepper spray or mace during Saturday's protest downtown. Beatty spoke with several media outlets Sunday, including Jo Ingles at Ohio Public Radio:

But Council President Hardin says they were at the peaceful protest and a few people got out of hand. Hardin issued an official statement says he's seen instances of police violence, and calling for several police reforms, including creation of a citizen review board and implementation of a series of recommendations issued last year in the Matrix Report. The Columbus Urban League is calling for a national economic protest by asking people not to go to work today.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has called out the Ohio National Guard and asked the highway patrol to help help enforce laws in Columbus and Cleveland, which are under 10 p.m. curfews amid protests over the death of George Floyd. DeWine says the vast majority of protesters wanted "simply to be heard" but their voices "are sadly being drowned out by a smaller group of violent individuals." Police say a protest in Dayton Sunday included no violence. Peaceful gatherings were also reported in Springfield and Piqua. Organizers are planning a community vigil tonight at Springfield City Hall in memory of George Floyd. Community leaders will share their thoughts on Floyd's death, followed by a moment of silence in his memory. 

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.
The Statehouse News Bureau was founded in 1980 to provide educational, comprehensive coverage of legislation, elections, issues and other activities surrounding the Statehouse to Ohio's public radio and television stations. To this day, the Bureau remains the only broadcast outlet dedicated to in-depth coverage of state government news and topics of statewide interest. The Bureau is funded througheTech Ohio, and is managed by ideastream. The reporters at the Bureau follow the concerns of the citizens and voters of Ohio, as well as the actions of the Governor, the Ohio General Assembly, the Ohio Supreme Court, and other elected officials. We strive to cover statehouse news, government issues, Ohio politics, and concerns of business, culture and the arts with balance and fairness, and work to present diverse voices and points of view from the Statehouse and throughout Ohio. The three award-winning journalists at the bureau have more than 60 combined years of radio and television experience. They can be heard on National Public Radio and are regular contributors to Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Marketplace. Every weekday, the Statehouse News Bureau produces in-depth news reports forOhio's public radio stations. Those stories are also available on this website, either on the front page or in our archives. Weekly, the Statehouse News Bureau produces a television show from our studios in the Statehouse. The State of Ohio is an unique blend of news, interviews, talk and analysis, and is broadcast on Ohio's public television stations. The Statehouse News Bureau also produces special programming throughout the year, including the Governor's annual State of the State address to the Ohio General Assembly and a five-part year-end review.
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