New year brings new judges to Franklin County bench, including recent appointee

Stephanie Mingo was appointed Dec. 26, 2018, by Gov. John Kasich as Municipal Court environmental Judge. She will take the bench  filling a vacancy created when Judge Dan Hawkins was elected to the Common Pleas bench. 

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January 4, 2019

Judge temporarily closes strip club that was scene of killing

A Judge on Wednesday approved a temporary restraining order sought by the Columbus City Attorney’s office to temporarily shut down Rachel’s Gentlemen’s Club, the notorious Far East Side strip club that was the scene of a fatal shooting earlier this month.

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June 22, 2017

Moldy Hilliard home demolished after house rued by construction mistakes

HILLARD, OHIO — A Hilliard home was demolished after sitting for more than a year when the homeowners discovered extensive mold attributed to construction mistakes.

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                  February 21, 2017

City working to close down troubled Hilltop apartment building

Used condoms and needles, mold and mildew, trash and debris, missing smoke detectors. These problems and more are why Columbus prosecutors are working to shut down a troubled Hilltop apartment building. Assistant City Attorney Kristen Kroflich called the conditions at 2958 Sullivant Ave. deplorable and owner Gordon Rankin’s inattention reckless.

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                 March 3, 2016

Court helping hoarder living in tent on North Side.


In August city crews hauled away over 4-tons of debris from the yard of 78-year-old David E. Hunter.  Officials have worked to relocate him out of the makeshift tent located on the the property of his uninhabitable house on the North Side as the weather has contiued ti worsen.   “We’re definitely concerned about him,” said Franklin County Environmental Judge Daniel Hawkins. “We’re trying to point him in a direction to get him out of the cold.”.

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January 14, 2016
Truck Driver Who Shut Down I-71 Facing Criminal Charges For Illegally Transporting Hazardous Materials.


The driver of the leaking hazmat truck that shut down I-71 on Thursday is now facing criminal charges.  Police say that driver was taking illegally taking hazardous materials through the city, having tampered with his trucks safety valve and caused the hours-long shutdown of an interstate, he may face a greater punishment from Franklin County Environmental Court.

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March 27, 2015
Columbus, Ohio, Sues to Halt App-Based Car Service Lyft.


The city filed a lawsuit yesterday to try to stop the app-based car service Lyft from operating in Columbus, as arguments wrapped up in a similar case against UberX.  The suit filed in Franklin County Municipal Court's Environmental Division asks a judge to halt Lyft’s operations, and the city is seeking a temporary restraining order that would stall the company while the request for a permanent injunction is argued in court.

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April 24, 2014
Man Jailed For Beating Dog With Hammer, Stabbing Another In Chest.


Judge Dan Hawkins of the Environmental Division of Franklin County's Municipal Court understands that animal cruelty is a severe crime and must be met with appropriate penalties.  The Judge sentenced the defendant to serve 180 days in jail, the maximum penalty under the law.

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August 14, 2013
Super 8, The Latest Hotel Closed By The City Of Columbus.



Environmental Court Judge Dan Hawkins signed a temporary restraining order closing down the Super 8 hotel after court documents showed over 700 police and fire department responses to the hotel at 1089 East Dublin Granville Road.


The Columbus Inn and Suites, right next door to the Super 8 was closed in June 2013. The Red Carpet Inn, several blocks east was closed January 2014.



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June 25, 2014
After-hours club closed, declared public nuisance.


Authorities shuttered an after-hours club on Karl Road at 7 a.m. Friday, Jan. 30, after Franklin County Environmental Judge Daniel R. Hawkins granted a temporary restraining order declaring the place a public nuisance.  The filing also details the owner’s alleged lack of response to certified letters and follow-up telephone calls from Columbus police officer Scott Clinger, community liaison to one of the precincts covering the Northland area.

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January 30, 2015
Harsher Penalties Planned for Negligent Property Owners.


Property owners that ignore orders from code enforcement may soon face harsher penalties when they come before Franklin County Environmental Court Judge Daniel R. Hawkins. Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman is asking City Council to approve an update to City Code that double the maximum fine from $500 to $1000 and triple the maximum jail time from 60 days to 180 days. Business penalties would also jump from a maximum of $3000 to $5000 for noncompliance.

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January 13, 2014
Judge: Environmental court only one of its kind in Ohio.


When the owner of a problem property says the problem has been solved and the prosecution says it has not, Franklin County Environmental Court Judge Daniel R. Hawkins has a simple solution:


He reconvenes the case at the location.


Hawkins, who has held the post for a little more than two years, was the special guest speaker at last week's monthly meeting of the Northwest Civic Association. "It's the only court like it in the state," Hawkins said.

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September 9, 2014

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