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BGSU Firelands offers public officials training

Andy Ouriel • Jan 2, 2013 at 2:22 PM

With BGSU Firelands hosting a training academy on leadership and good governance, aimed specifically at public officials, the Register compiled a list of area representatives who might find the program beneficial. (Read more about the BGSU Firelands program in Wednesday's Register.)

Sandusky County Sheriff Kyle Overmyer

Overmyer dodged legitimate questions and ignored public records requests relating to a January 2012 incident, in which county jail guards allegedly exploited a naked, schizophrenic inmate who was locked in a jail cell.

Overmyer eventually fired two of the jail guards involved, and a third resigned.

Willard police Chief Mark Holden; former law director David Harwood; law director Eric Weisenberger

When 16-year-old Michael Mason was arrested in Willard for allegedly shooting his mother, Holden and Harwood refused to release police reports detailing a hit list the boy created. Michael's mother survived. Willard officials long maintained their steely grip on any information in the case.

Since then, they've continued to dodge public records requests.

When a police officer shot a woman in the foot during a drug raid in Willard recently, Holden was on vacation.

Weisenberger didn't return numerous phone messages seeking public records, and the police department failed to release a report on the incident.

Sandusky attorney Marc Fishel and city manager Nicole Ard

With Ard's approval, Fishel released heavily redacted documents detailing an alleged love triangle involving two city police officers and a commander's wife this past spring. When asked why he blacked out the information, Fishel couldn't recall exactly why he made the redactions. He also couldn't say which specific sections of state law allowed him to withhold the information.

Sandusky County coroner John Wukie

In March, Wukie originally ruled 19-year-old Jacob Limberios' death a suicide. But major inconsistencies in witness statements led others to believe differently.It then took Wukie nine months to order a coroner's inquiry into Limberios' death. And that came only after the family hired an attorney and sued Sandusky County.

Perkins Township attorney John Coppeler and trustees Tim Coleman, Jeff Ferrell and Mike Printy

Coppeler refused to release an internal report on an incident involving an on-duty officer who provided an off-duty officer a ride home after a night of drinking on

Thanksgiving morning.

Trustees agreed wholeheartedly with Coppeler's decision.

The off-duty officer -- Kate Barker, who has since been fired -- had allegedly been drinking before Officer Tim Alexander pulled over her vehicle.

When the Register tried to figure out why the township wouldn't release the investigative report, Coppeler didn't return reporters' phone calls.

For their part, trustees deferred to his legal advice.

It's not the first time Coppeler and trustees opted for a "hold-your-horses" approach to public records requests.


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