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Christmas break unwraps football players suspensions, plane crash, shooting

Many students left campus for most of December, therefore, leaving behind college life and what was going on at Ohio State. News, however, doesn’t take breaks for the holidays. Here’s a recap of what you might have missed during break:

Pilot walks away from plane crash near OSU’s Don Scott Airport

The pilot of a small cargo plane was injured after his plane went down near OSU’s Don Scott Airport around 10:45 p.m. on Dec. 27.

Duane Revennaugh, 45, was the only person on board. He was transported to Riverside Methodist Hospital and treated for head and face injuries, said Dale Gelter, airfield operations manager at the OSU airport.

Revennaugh was discharged Dec. 28, according to Riverside Hospital.

The plane, a twin-engine Aero Commander 500B numbered N888CA, apparently lost power as it was preparing to land and went down in a hilly area in the southeast corner of the airport.

Gelter said the plane, hauling only cargo, appeared to be totaled.

OSU police and the Columbus Fire Department received calls about the crash around 10:45 p.m. and responded.

The airport did not incur any damage.

The Federal Aviation Administration and Ohio Highway Patrol are investigating the crash.

Terrelle Pryor, four others suspended for first five games of 2011 for receiving improper benefits

The NCAA suspended five OSU football players for the first five games of the 2011 season “for selling awards, gifts and university apparel and receiving improper benefits in 2009.”

Terrelle Pryor, Dan Herron, Mike Adams, DeVier Posey and Solomon Thomas must repay between $1,000 and $2,500 in money and benefits to a charity.

The players are eligible for the Sugar Bowl, in which OSU will face Arkansas Tuesday in New Orleans, on the basis that the athletes “did not receive adequate rules education during the time period the violations occurred,” said Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president of academic and membership affairs in a press release Dec. 23.

Jordan Whiting must also sit out the first game of the 2011 season.

The athletes sold items including Big Ten championship rings, a Fiesta Bowl sportsmanship award, Gold Pants (given to players for beating Michigan), football jerseys, pants and shoes. Herron, Posey and Thomas also traded their autographs for discounted tattoos.

The NCAA, not OSU, handed down the suspensions. Athletic Director Gene Smith said the university did not suggest self-imposed sanctions to the NCAA.

For their first five games next year, the Buckeyes play Akron, Toledo, Miami (Fla.), Colorado and Michigan State.

Juniors Pryor, Herron, Posey and Adams could have looked into entering the NFL draft early, rather than spend nearly half of their senior seasons sidelined. They made the decision to stay at OSU after Tressel made them promise to come back or they couldn’t play in the Sugar Bowl.

Police arrest bank robber who could be ‘church lady bandit’

An exploding dye pack caused a woman who police suspect could be the infamous “church lady bandit” to be charged with a bank robbery Dec. 23.

The “church lady bandit” robbed the U.S. Bank branch at the Ohio Union on Oct. 20.Chuch Lady Bandit

A woman holding a scarf to her face robbed the Fifth Third Bank at 155 W. Nationwide Blvd, at about 12:57 p.m., the FBI said.

The woman approached the teller counter and showed the teller a note saying she had a gun, was robbing the bank and that the teller had one minute to comply. The teller gave the woman money from her drawer along with a dye pack.

The woman fled the bank with the money. Witnesses outside the bank watched the dye pack explode on the woman, causing her to drop the stolen money, all of which was returned to the bank.

Columbus police found the woman hiding in a building across the street from the bank, her clothes covered in red dye.

Police identified the robber as Sylvete P. Gilbert, a 46-year-old black woman from Columbus. Gilbert was taken into Columbus police custody where she confessed to and was charged with the robbery.

Officials say Gilbert could be the “church lady bandit,” a robber who has been a suspect in eight bank robberies and a hotel robbery since 2006.

Officials are comparing Gilbert’s physical description to previous surveillance images of the “church lady bandit” and comparing the way the robberies were committed.

The FBI, Columbus Police Department and OSU Police Department were working on this case Dec. 23.

Hacked: Data breach costly for Ohio State, victims of compromised info

OSU revealed a data breach Dec. 15 that jeopardized the identities of 760,000 people and could cost the university $4 million.

In October, hackers accessed the server that stored the names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth and addresses of current and former students, faculty, applicants and others affiliated with the university.

University officials said every current and former student, faculty and staff member was sent an e-mail Dec. 15 informing them of the breach and precautions the university was taking in the breach’s aftermath.

The breach will cost the university $4 million in expenses related to investigative consulting, notification of the breach, credit security and a calling center for anyone with questions or concerns.

Between the time and notification of the breach, the university hired two computer security consulting firms, Interhack Corp., based in Columbus, and Stroz Friedberg LLC, based in New York.

The firms found no evidence data were stolen, but the university is offering 12 months of free credit protection to everyone whose information was on the server through Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

This was the largest data breach among educational institutions in 2010 and in OSU’s history, according to Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, an organization that protects consumers’ privacy rights.

On Dec. 15, the university couldn’t release how the server was hacked because the case was still under investigation.

Former Ohio State teaching assistant to be charged with attempted murder, kidnapping

Melissa A former OSU teaching assistant will be charged with attempted murder and kidnapping after she allegedly shot her ex-fiancé and then forced him into her car Dec. 14, Dublin police said.

Thirty-year-old Melissa “Missie” Stredney of Columbus taught a lab section of Chemistry 122 before OSU fired her in February 2009 after receiving reports of misconduct.

Dublin police responded to a 9-1-1 call saying a woman with a gun was forcing a man into her silver Chevrolet Cavalier in the parking lot of NCO Financial Systems at 5626 Frantz Road.

Police pulled the car over a mile from the scene and took Stredney into custody.

The victim, identified as 30-year-old Jamie Hart, was flown to Grant Medical Center in critical condition. Hart had stabilized that night.

Stredney and Hart were engaged to be married in October 2010, according to an article from Ohio’s Tribune Chronicle website, but they didn’t get married. Police believe the break-up was Stredney’s motive.

Stredney graduated from OSU in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry and is pursuing her Bachelor of Science in pharmaceutical sciences, although she is not enrolled for Winter Quarter 2011.

tredney was fired as teaching assistant during Winter Quarter 2009 after canceling labs, telling students what to write on their reports and sending threatening e-mails to students.

Lauren Hallow and Zack Meisel contributed to this story. 

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