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Published: Wednesday, 8/20/2014

Liquor store clerk serves 4 months of jail sentence

Thompson Thompson

A former liquor store employee convicted of selling vodka to an Ottawa Hills teen was released Tuesday after serving four months of a six-month sentence at the Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio near Stryker.

Nicholas Thompson, 39, of 340 S. Reynolds Rd. was placed on probation for a year by Lucas County Common Pleas Judge James Bates, who also ordered that he seek employment that does not involve the sale of alcohol.

“I think it was a hard lesson to learn, but I felt it was very necessary in making a statement … because it didn’t seem like anybody was taking these seriously,” the judge said. “There are a lot of underage sales that take place and nobody goes to jail. They pay a fine, and they walk out of the courtroom.”

A jury convicted Mr. Thompson of furnishing intoxicating liquor to a minor, a misdemeanor, for selling vodka at Foxx Liquor on Feb. 1, 2013, to Blake Pappas, then 17 and a friend of Brian Hoeflinger.

Mr. Hoeflinger, 18, an Ottawa Hills High School senior, died that night in a drunken-driving crash.

Mr. Thompson subsequently pleaded guilty to selling beer to a minor for an April 12, 2013, sale at Foxx. He got a concurrent six-month jail sentence.

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