Friday, Oct 28, 2016
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Police & Fire

Authorities find moonshine operation at S. Toledo home

Bailiffs from Toledo Municipal Court made an unusual discovery Wednesday morning during a home inspection in South Toledo.

While in the home at 4040 Greencrest Ln., bailiffs found, in the 506 square foot garage, five 250-gallon tubs used in a large moonshine manufacturing operation.

The resident, who was not at the house Wednesday afternoon, has not been charged, although, as an investigation continues, he could face charges of illegal manufacturing and illegal possession of alcohol, said police Sgt. Joe Heffernan.

Police confiscated 2 1/2 gallons of the finished product, he said.

Bailiffs arrived at the house Wednesday for a set out, which is part of the eviction process in which personal belongings are removed from the house, said Toledo Municipal Housing Court Judge Allen McConnell.

The house, he said, had moved into foreclosure.

Police who arrived on scene to assist the court officials called the Toledo Fire Department’s HAZMAT crew to make sure there was nothing hazardous or combustible, Sergeant Heffernan said.

“There are a lot of situations that, if you let your guard down, become very dangerous and either fatal or involve injury,” said Toledo fire Lt. Matthew Hertzfeld.

The operation didn’t look like a traditional set-up, the lieutenant added.

The HAZMAT crew also tested for acids and bases, “to determine if there are any hazardous chemicals in there.”

HAZMAT was at the property from about 11:15 a.m. until about 1 p.m.

Employees of the Environmental Services were also at the house Wednesday, although Sergeant Heffernan said everything “appears benign.”

The houses occupant used a water heater as part of the operation, which sent vapors into an attached pipe creating condensation and eventually filled blue plastic jugs with the alcohol, authorities said.

The floor of the garage was littered with empty bags of sugar and corn, both used in making the alcohol, authorities said.

With the exception of the confiscated alcohol, the rest of the property — the items in the garage and the large pile of personal belongings on the front lawn — will have to be cleaned up by the property owner, he said.

It’s unclear how long the resident lived in the house. The property is owned by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, more commonly known as Freddie Mac, according to the Lucas County Auditor’s Web site.

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