Wednesday, Sep 28, 2016
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Police & Fire

Toledo officer suspended for failing to check on man

A Toledo police officer was suspended without pay for three days for neglect of duty after he failed to check on an elderly man, who was found dead in his home the next day.

Officer Ward Lemke will serve one day, with the other two held in abeyance. He pleaded no contest during an administrative hearing yesterday, police Chief Mike Navarre said.

Officer Lemke and his partner were at Fire Station No. 9 in the 900 block of South Avenue June 3 when they were approached by a woman concerned about her neighbor, Malcolm Everett Samons, 74. She tried to enter his house with a key but found the door locked from the inside. Officer Lemke told her he would check the residence, police said.

Chief Navarre said the officers then received a domestic disturbance call to which they responded. Officer Lemke forgot to respond to Mr. Samons' residence. The Lucas County coroner's office said his death was natural.

The chief said Officer Lemke, who joined the force in 1999, was a good officer with no prior discipline.

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