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MAHONING COUNTY Trial date scheduled for Beaver Twp. man



Published: Wed, August 17, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The lawyer for Christopher Aczel wants his client's bond to be reduced.

YOUNGSTOWN -- Trial is set for September for a Beaver Township man facing 19 charges stemming from a two-county chase from police authorities in July.

Christopher Aczel, 33, of West Calla Road, was arraigned Tuesday in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court by Judge Maureen A. Sweeney. Judge Sweeney will hear the case, slated to start Sept. 14.

Aczel is being held on $1 million bond. Atty. Ted Macejko Jr., who is representing Aczel, filed a motion Tuesday a hearing on a lower bond. Macejko argued that despite a felony record, Aczel has always lived in Mahoning County and isn't a flight risk. He has a seasonal job and is scheduled to return to work soon, Macejko said.

Despite the slew of charges, the bond should be reasonable to assure appearance in court, not as punishment or to prevent further crime, Macejko said.

What he's charged for

On July 12, Aczel led police on a two-county chase during which the Jeep he was driving rammed an unmarked cruiser containing three officers in Canfield. Officers had tried to serve a search warrant on Aczel for other charges. The pursuit led to Portage County, where Aczel abandoned his vehicle and fled. He surrendered a few days later.

Aczel has been indicted on three counts of breaking and entering, three counts of theft of drugs, four counts of drug possession, three counts of felonious assault on a police officer, and one count each of receiving stolen property, possession of criminal tools, illegal cultivation of drugs, failure to comply with an order or signal of a police officer, aggravated robbery and escape.

The indictment alleges Aczel committed the crimes in March, April and July. Authorities also allege that on July 20, he attempted to remove a weapon from a law enforcement officer and also tried to escape from detention.

The felonies carry penalties ranging from six months in prison on the possession of criminal tools charge to 10 years in prison on charges of aggravated robbery, escape and felonious assault on a peace officer.

A county grand jury returned a secret indictment against Aczel on July 14 on several drug tracking charges. That case is set for trial Aug. 24.




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