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Published: Wednesday, 5/10/2006

Drug house ordered demolished

FOSTORIA - The city, citing four drug raids conducted at a home within two years, yesterday ordered the property's owner to demolish the structure within 20 days.

On Monday a team of police officers and agents from a joint drug task force raided the home at 537 S. Poplar St. and arrested two adults and seized an undetermined quantity of marijuana, Ecstasy, crack cocaine, drug paraphernalia, and criminal tools, police chief John McGuire said in a statement.

Mayor John Davoli said he was with the police chief and his officers for three hours during the raid and spoke with neighbors afterward to discuss the property.

Arrested were a tenant, Joseph Morton, Jr., 55, and Harmonie Poe, 27, of Findlay.

Mr. Morton was charged with obstruction of justice and persistent disorderly conduct. The police chief said other charges were pending, based on laboratory results.

Ms. Poe was charged with failure to appear in court on a warrant.

Mr. Davoli said juveniles and other adults were in the home at the time, and were questioned and released.

The demolition order, signed by zoning inspector Tiffany Shaver, cited the structure's alleged violation of the international property maintenance code that the city has adopted.

The violation notice cited the building's dilapidated condition, "unsafe, unsanitary, or otherwise unfit for human habitation or occupancy ."

The notice provides for an appeals process. The home is owned by Roy Reinhart of Alvada, Ohio. He could not be reached for comment.

Mr. Davoli said the city, through its zoning inspector, is trying to become more aggressive in cleaning up properties that have been neglected or are used for drug deals.

"These properties stick out like a sore thumb," he said.

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