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Published: Wednesday, 1/6/2010

Michigan man pleads not guilty to theft charge

A Dearborn, Mich., man appeared in Lucas County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday to face charges that he swindled an elderly couple out of money by promising work he didn’t complete.

Tony Ross, 32, pleaded not guilty to theft from the elderly, a crime punishable by up to 1 years in prison. He was released on his own recognizance and was given a Feb. 9 trial date.

Toledo police said Mr. Ross was one of four men who approached a 91-year-old man Aug. 28, 2008, outside his home in the 400 block of West Crawford Avenue. One of the suspects told the elderly man he’d done work for him and offered to repair cracks in the driveway and sidewalk, the report said.

The men then told the man he owed several thousand dollars for the work. Mr. Ross then allegedly went into the home and asked the man’s 86-year-old wife, who uses a wheelchair, for cash.

The woman, who told police she felt intimidated, said she gave him $360 cash and a $1,000 check made payable to Tony Ross. Police said Mr. Ross cashed the check at KeyBank on Lewis Avenue.

No other suspects were identified or charged.

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