Andrew Zepeda appears in Wood County Common Pleas Court in Bowling Green, 2011.
BOWLING GREEN – Former radio host Andrew Zepeda left a Wood County courtroom in handcuffs today after he was sentenced to six months in prison for violating the terms of his community control.
Wood County Common Pleas Judge Alan Mayberry revoked Zepeda's community control for working at a restaurant that serves alcohol – a direct violation of the terms of his probation.
“He knows this was a mistake, and it was a conscious decision – he knew he shouldn't be there,” Zepeda's attorney, Stevin Groth, said. “Ultimately, I think Judge Mayberry was frustrated and fairly so because Andrew has had a long and checkered probation period.”
Zepeda, 48, of Perrysburg was sentenced in 2012 to 30 days in jail and placed on community control for five years stemming from a 2010 break-in at a pizzeria he once owned at Levis Commons.
Zepeda had pleaded guilty in February, 2011, to theft, complicity to breaking and entering, and failure to remit sales tax, but Judge Mayberry granted him “intervention in lieu of conviction” – a designation that allowed him to undergo treatment for an alcohol problem rather than be saddled with felony convictions.
After it was learned that he had violated his intervention plan by twice going to venues where alcohol was served, the judge found him guilty of the felony charges and again ordered him to stay away from bars and other places where alcohol was served during his five years of probation.
Wood County Prosecutor Paul Dobson said his office did not ask that a prison sentence be imposed, but he was not surprised the judge chose to do that.
“I think that the court determined ultimately that, yeah the case has been going on for quite some time, but it's been going on for quite some time because it's had to deal with Mr. Zepeda on more than one occasion for probation violations – mostly for the same type of activity,” he said. “When someone is going to continually thumb their nose at the court, the judge is not going to react favorably to that.”
According to court records, Zepeda — former host of the weekday drive-time show Andrew Z in the Morning on WWWM-FM 105 — was seen by an agent with the Ohio Investigation Unit working at Cabo Loco Mexi-Bar & Burgers in Northwood on March 11.
“I recognized A. Zepeda due to him at one time being a local celebrity and having seen him in person at events and pictures throughout the city of Toledo,” Agent Matthew Pugh wrote.
Mr. Groth said Zepeda was helping out at a restaurant owned by his girlfriend's family.
“It was a family business that he was not allowed to work at, and at some point things got tight financially with staffing, and he made a very poor decision to work there,” Mr. Groth said.
A warrant was issued for his arrest, and Zepeda turned himself in today.
“He wanted to handle it, take care of matters, put this chapter behind him, and accept his punishment,” Mr. Groth said.
Contact Jennifer Feehan at: email@example.com or 419-213-2134.
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