Friday, May 25, 2018
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California developer held in jail for failure to obey fire department orders


Koray Ergur clenches his fist after becoming argumentative with Judge C. Allen McConnell during an appearance in Toledo Municipal Housing Court, Friday. Ergur, who owns both the downtown Nicholas and Spitzer buildings, was arrested Thursday and placed in jail pending for fire department order violations.

The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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The owner of the downtown Nicholas and Spitzer buildings, after a spirited appearance in Toledo Housing Court today, was ordered to appear in court again next week.

The $25,000 bond for Koray Ergur, a California developer, was ordered continued by Judge C. Allen McConnell. He is being held in the Lucas County jail for failure to obey fire department orders.

A dispute over whether or not Mr. Ergur, who said he would not be hiring an attorney, entered a “no contest” plea to the violation on March 12 caused the defendant to have a minor uproar.

“I'm not guilty,” he shouted. “What are you asking me that question for?” he said to the judge when asked about the plea.

The pretrial hearing took a brief break so the prosecutor could review the “thick” file. Once the case was recalled, the prosecutor said he personally recalled the defendant entering the plea.

“That's a bunch of long talk and a whole bunch of lies,” Mr. Ergur said, then refuting the claims by providing his own recollection of the March appearance.

“I said, 'I will not enter any pleas' … and then … they tried to bargain and I said 'no.' ”

When Judge McConnell started to say he would recommend pulling the transcripts of the case, Mr. Ergur interrupted demanding that the judge let him finish providing his side of the story.

“You've got to let me speak, your honor, because you throw me so many times in jail, your honor. And here I am in chains, your honor, and this is a dog and pony show, your honor,” he shouted.

The hearing was eventually shut down by Judge McConnell, who said, “I don't need to hear this.”

The judge ordered the transcripts to be pulled and continued the case to Tuesday at 9 a.m.

Mr. Ergur was arrested on the outstanding bench warrant on Thursday after making an appearance in Lucas County Common Pleas Court for a civil matter regarding the Nicholas Building.

Details of the fire department violations were not immediately available today.

The basement of the Nicholas Building has been flooded with groundwater because pumps that should keep it dry are without power.

The building, once home to Fifth Third Bank, has been vacant for years.

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