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Published: Friday, 7/23/2004

Suspect captured after 7-hour manhunt

PORT CLINTON - A man wanted for a parole violation was located last night seven hours after he fled from police, prompting a search that involved nearly 30 law enforcement officials and a helicopter.

Michael Bodi, 39, was taken into custody at about 6 p.m. after a resident reported seeing him run across a field along West Catawba Road in Catawba Island Township.

Ottawa County Sheriff Craig Emahiser said Bodi was caught following a short foot chase. The arrest took place without incident, and Bodi did not have a weapon.

Bodi drove away from his house at 4849 Weyhe Rd. about 10:50 a.m. as police from Catawba Island Township and Danbury Township approached to take him into custody on a parole violation, Sheriff Emahiser said.

Officers pursued Bodi to Union Street, a narrow road off Porter Street, where he jumped out of his car, the sheriff said. He then fled southeast across a field into a large wooded area.

Family members told officers Bodi was intoxicated and possibly armed, so authorities launched a broad search with police from Catawba Island Township, Danbury Township, Marblehead, and Port Clinton, plus sheriff's deputies and state troopers.

Bob Bratton, chief deputy of the Ottawa County Sheriff's Office, said three canine units and a Toledo police helicopter also were employed in the search.

The sheriff's office activated the Community Alert Network, sending recorded messages about the search to residents' telephones.

Sheriff Emahiser said his department did not know last night what Bodi's original charge was or how he allegedly violated his probation. Officials with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction could not be reached for comment.

Bodi was to be transported to the Ottawa County jail last night. He faces a charge of violating parole, as well as pending local charges, Sheriff Emahiser said.

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