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YOUNGSTOWN Complaint alleges man was in danger



Published: Thu, August 23, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



The deputy was working the undercover litter detail in street clothes and driving a pickup truck.

By PATRICIA MEADE

VINDICATOR CRIME REPORTER

YOUNGSTOWN -- A Pennsylvania excavator whose brother was cited for hauling trash without a permit and letting debris fly out of a truck says a deputy dumped his brother in the city.

"My biggest gripe is that he towed the truck and left my brother with no ride," said Paul Siegel of Siegel Excavating in Edinburg. "Some guys chased him down Williamson [Avenue]. The deputy should have stuck around."

Siegel said he didn't know that he had to have a city permit to haul trash. He said his company has been doing work on Hillman Street, hauling away debris from some church properties.

Siegel said he's seen drug deals in the neighborhood and wondered why police don't concentrate on that instead of businessmen.

"If that's the policy, I'll call the sheriff's department every day and keep them busy. I see trucks go to the dump every day without a permit," Siegel said. "If they're going to nail me, then nail everyone. I can keep them busy round the clock."

Patrol: Salaries of Deputies Rob Lunsford and Bob Conway are paid through a Community Development Block Grant. They patrol at staggered hours, looking for violators of the city's dumping and littering laws.

Siegel said the truck should not have been towed and the deputy should have only issued a warning. "To tow us for no sticker is unbelievable."

The vehicle had to be seized for evidence purposes, said sheriff's Maj. Michael Budd. He said deputies don't abandon people on the streets; they always offer rides or the use of a phone.

Lunsford was working undercover litter detail in street clothes and driving a pickup truck at 8:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Lunsford said he spotted papers, wood and other items blow out of the truck bed as the truck turned east on Williamson. The driver, Thomas Siegel, 43, told the deputy that he had no hauling permit and no cover for the bed, reports show.

Ride refused: After calling for a tow truck, Lunsford offered Siegel a ride to the bus station or the sheriff's department, but both offers were refused, the deputy said in his report. Lunsford also offered the use of a cell phone so Siegel could call his brother, but Siegel declined.

The deputy dropped Siegel off at a store close by on Market Street that had a phone. Siegel said he wanted to stay on Williamson, where his brother would find him by backtracking.

Siegel then went back to Williamson, where his brother did find him.

The Siegel brothers went to the sheriff's department Tuesday evening to file a complaint with its Internal Affairs Division.

meade@vindy.com




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