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Published: Wednesday, 1/17/2007

Defense attorney claims search by Fostoria police chief was illegal

FOSTORIA A Fostoria attorney is asking a Seneca County Common Pleas judge to prohibit prosecutors from using crack cocaine and the defendant s statements as evidence in a trial because he claims the discovery was based on an illegal search of the suspect s car.

The motion to suppress evidence request also states that the search of Clifford W. Green s car was illegal because of the disputed hiring status of Police Chief John McGuire.

Police stopped Mr. Green, 24, on Oct. 27 on a report that the car had been involved in recent drug sales. The drugs and cash were found while the police chief was searching Mr. Green.

Attorney Gene P. Murray said in his Jan. 11 filing that Mr. McGuire should not be considered the police chief because the process by which John McGuire was hired as police chief is illegal, and therefore arguably negating John McGuire s status as police chief at all pertinent times.

The 3rd District Court of Appeals in Lima ruled in August that the hiring process of the chief that was conducted by the Fostoria Civil Service Commission was flawed and sent the case back to Seneca County.

The police chief has been indicted for falsifying his resume and job application.

His case is scheduled to go to trial March 26 on two counts of tampering with records and two counts of falsification. Chief McGuire, 37, has pleaded not guilty.

Read more later in The Blade and online at toledoblade.com.

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