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Published: Friday, 4/1/2005

Ex-Fostoria officer denies charges in stalking case

TIFFIN - A former Fostoria police sergeant pleaded not guilty yesterday to charges that he stalked and threatened his estranged wife two years ago.

Nick Portentoso, who resigned from the city's police force in April, 2003, entered the pleas to six felony counts during his arraignment before Judge Steve Shuff of Seneca County Common Pleas Court. The judge set bond of $25,000, with 10 percent payment allowed, on five of the six counts but maintained an earlier decision to deny bond on the most serious charge, felonious assault.

Mr. Portentoso also is charged with two counts of disrupting public services and single counts of menacing by stalking, intimidation, and possession of cocaine. An indictment filed last month against Mr. Portentoso alleges that he threatened his then-wife, Kathleen Portentoso, with a 45-caliber semiautomatic handgun Feb. 7, 2003, at her home in Loudon Township near Fostoria. He is also charged with damaging a telephone and a cell phone belonging to Mrs. Portentoso.

Mr. Portentoso is scheduled for a pretrial hearing April 19. His trial is to begin May 16.

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