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TRUMBULL COUNTY Police captain is accused of driving under influence



Published: Fri, April 1, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The captain was on duty and driving a cruiser when he crashed a police car.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

CORTLAND -- A city police captain has been arrested on a charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers arrested Capt. Stan Lancey around 4 a.m. Thursday after the police officer was involved in a one-vehicle crash on state Route 46 in Bazetta Township, a spokesman for the patrol said.

According to the report, Police Chief Gary Mink called the state patrol to report the crash. Lancey told Mink a deer ran out in front of him and that he swerved to miss it, struck the deer and possibly struck a sign as well. Mink said he gave Lancey a breath test, but it registered no alcohol in Lancey's breath. Lancey also denied drinking alcohol in the last 24 hours, the report stated.

Intoxication can come from drugs other than alcohol, officials have said.

The trooper noted that Lancey's eyes were bloodshot and glassy.

"He appeared to be incoherent at times while I was talking to him," the report states. "He fell asleep on a couple of occasions while I was speaking with him. He also was drooling on himself. Lancey said he is on several prescription medications and sometimes his blood pressure medicine makes him dizzy."

Lancey told the trooper his doctor advised him to use care when operating a vehicle while taking the medications.

Lancey also told the trooper he had hit the deer when he was driving north on Warren Meadville Road.

The report further stated the trooper later determined that Lancey was driving south on state Route 46 in Bazetta Township, drove off the right side of the road and hit three mailboxes.

Lancey submitted a urine test that will be sent to the state lab for analysis, the report states. He was driving a marked cruiser while on duty.

Neither Mink nor Lancey could be reached to comment. Lancey is scheduled to appear in Central District Court April 4, the report states.

Cortland Mayor Curt Moll said no one was injured in the crash and that the cruiser was slightly damaged.

It is not known if Lancey, who works the midnight shift, will face discipline. His regular days off work are Friday and Saturday. He is scheduled to return for the midnight shift Sunday.

Previous offense

Lancey received a written reprimand after the police chief found an open container of whiskey inside Lancey's cruiser on Nov. 23.

Mink, in his notice of disciplinary action, stated that at around 1:25 p.m. Nov. 23, he entered the police station, walked past Lancey's office and smelled alcohol. The chief then found the open bottle in Lancey's cruiser.

The chief asked Lancey to take a test to determine if he had alcohol in his system, but Lancey declined.

The written reprimand also states that any future infractions "like in nature and/or related to any substance of abuse" will be met with more severe disciplinary sanctions.

The reprimand further states that to protect the professional integrity of the police department, Lancey must submit to periodic, random blood, breath or urine tests.

sinkovich@vindy.com




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