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Published: Tuesday, 11/27/2001

Parolee breaks grandmother's heart

BY CHRISTINA HALL
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Yesterday, he used the car as a getaway vehicle after he robbed a Fifth Third Bank in West Toledo, officers said. He sideswiped another vehicle in South Toledo and later got the car stuck in a muddy field. That's where police found him - sitting inside the car, smoking a crack pipe.

Dearing, freed from the Lima Correctional Institution only 29 hours earlier, was back behind bars.

“I sent him money for food and toiletries [in prison] two times a month, and this is what I get?” said Dearing's grandmother, 77, who asked that her name not be published. “I'm devastated. I prayed and prayed: Should I let him come back here? I guess this is God's answer.”

Dearing's alleged crime spree even surprised Toledo police detectives.

“I've never seen someone so eager to go back [to prison] before,” Detective Bob Schroeder said. “It's borderline absurd.”

Dearing was released after serving three-years for robbing a Charter One Bank branch at 602 Main St. in December, 1998.

His grandmother got up at 4:30 a.m. Sunday and left her Springfield Township home to pick him up and take him to her house.

At the prison, she waited for more than 90 minutes, then helped her grandson load a small television and brown bag into her car. They drove an hour and a half and stopped to eat at McDonald's, 6555 Airport Highway, about 11 a.m.

Dearing said he wanted to change into some of the new clothes - jeans, sweaters, tennis shoes, and a leather jacket - his grandmother had bought him. She said she thought the request was odd because they were only a few miles from home. “He went outside to get the clothes, and he took off with the car, and he left me stranded. He took my car, and he took off to the crack house.”

Investigators don't know everywhere Dearing went overnight, but they said he drove around and apparently slept in his grandmother's car.

About 9 a.m. yesterday, police said Dearing robbed the Fifth Third Bank branch at 1028 West Alexis Rd. He pulled out a note, which threatened a shooting, and demanded money from a teller. He fled in his grandmother's car.

About 10:20 a.m., police saw him driving the car, which had been involved in a hit-skip accident near Wenz Road and Hill Avenue. The car later got stuck in a field near the 800 block of Butterfield Drive. As police officers approached the car, they saw money scattered on the floor of the car and Dearing smoking a crack pipe.

Police Lt. Rick Reed said Dearing refused to come out of the car, so police broke a window to get inside. They recovered most of the money taken in the robbery.

Dearing was charged with aggravated robbery, driving under suspension, and failure to stop after an accident. Additional charges could be added later, police said. He was being held in the Lucas County jail last night pending an arraignment today in Toledo Municipal Court.

“He had a fair adjustment to being incarcerated,” said JoEllen Culp, a spokeswoman with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

Prior to his sentence for robbery, Dearing served time for separate and unrelated forgery and theft charges. His grandmother said he has stolen her car before.

“Prison hasn't helped him. Nothing has,” his grandmother said. He has attended drug and alcohol treatment programs, she said.

She said she hopes her grandson will receive psychological help and beat the drug habit he started when he was 16. But, she said, Dearing is going to have to beat his addictions without her. “He doesn't have me. I'm done.''



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