Two proposals before the Ohio legislature seek to honor three fallen Cincinnati-area police officers by renaming highways for them.
Representatives Jessica Miranda and Sedrick Denson introduced a bill that would rename I-275 between I-75 and Winton Road "Officer Kaia Grant Memorial Highway." The bill passed unanimously out of committee Wednesday. Grant was killed in the line of duty in 2020.
Representative Cindy Abrams introduced a bill Thursday seeking to rename I-71 between Second Street and Martin Luther King Drive "Officers Dennis Bennington and Robert Seiffert Memorial Highway."
Bennington and Seiffert were killed in 1979 during a traffic stop of Gregory Daniels, who had an open warrant for aggravated robbery, according to reports at the time.
Daniels opened fire on the officers as they approached his car. Bennington was hit in the chest, Seiffert in the head. Bennington was able to return fire, killing Daniels. Daniels' female passenger survived.
At the time, Bennington and Seiffert were remembered as model officers. It was said their personnel files read like textbooks.
The pair died during an especially dangerous time for Cincinnati police. During the 1970s, ten officers were killed in the line of duty. In comparison, only six Cincinnati officers have been killed in the 40 years since then.
Their deaths and others, in part, prompted the 1979 police strike when officers parked their cruisers in front of City Hall and left the keys in a pile.
Springdale officer Kaia Grant was not yet born when Bennington and Seiffert were killed.
Grant, 33, died in March 2020 while assisting with a police pursuit. She was on I-275 outside her cruiser when the suspect, Terry Blankenship, aimed his vehicle at her and crashed, prosecutors said. Blankenship survived despite shooting himself shortly after the crash. He is facing the death penalty.