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Sandusky car dealer faces felony forgery charges

Melissa Topey • Jul 31, 2010 at 2:57 AM


The owner of Newman Motors defrauded a local federal credit union by forging signatures on insurance claims checks worth more than $21,000, according to police.

Perkins police on Thursday charged Tim Newman with felony charges of forgery, complicity to forgery and defrauding creditors, alleging he forged checks so Vacationland Federal Credit Union could cash them.

On June 25, Bryan Myers of Vacationland Credit Union called the police to report a possible forgery. The bank holds the deed to three properties for which Newman took out mortgages. Newman, who is undergoing bankruptcy proceedings, according to federal court records, filed insurance claims for storm damage on property at 405 Morningside Court, 2718 Sweetbriar Drive, and 1033 Cleveland Road. A check for $16,179 was made payable to Newman, his wife Pam and Central Loan Administration & Reporting -- a loan subservicer used by Vacationland Credit Union. A second check for $5,444 was made payable to Newman and Central Loan Administration & Reporting.

Police allege Newman forged the name of his wife, while an accomplice, Nicholas Lesch, forged an unknown name to represent an endorsement from the loan subservicer. The checks were then cashed at Ace American's Cash Express in Sandusky.

Newman legally cashed a third check for $9,645, Officer Aaron Bramel said.

Lesch told police Newman promised him $2,000 for his help but he declined unless he could do work for the money. He said he agreed to do repair work at Newman's properties but only received part of the cut Newman promised him.

When police interviewed him, Lesch said he didn't know that what they were doing was illegal, Bramel said.

Newman told police he would come in with his attorney for an interview but never showed up, Bramel said.

Newman was free Thursday evening on a $25,000 bond posted by Mayo Bail Bonds after he was booked into the Erie County jail. Lesch is also free after All State Bail Bonds posted his $10,000 bond.

His problems don't end with Perkins police.

The Sandusky Police Department has received several complaints about Newman Motors regarding titles taking a long time to be obtained.

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