January 16, 2013
LIMA — Allen County Sheriff Sam Crish said deputies are still unsure how a man ended up driving his car onto the runway of the Allen County airport and into the field of a local farmer.
The sheriff’s office reported the owner of the farm alerted them to the deserted car in the field around 9 a.m. Monday. The white, four-door Lincoln Town Car was still sitting there Wednesday, unable to be removed because of wet field conditions.
An investigation revealed the car had driven more than three-quarters of a mile off the runway, where it came to rest in the marshy field sometime during the overnight hours Monday. The license plates were traced back to Heston Cuffy, 49, of Lima, who denied having any involvement in the incident. He was not taken into custody.
Allen County Sheriff Chief Deputy Jimmy Everett said it would be hard for anyone to accidentally enter the runway. One must enter the airport entry road and drive around obstacles such as buildings to get to it.
"You would have known it," Everett said.
Everett said this incident was the first of its kind.
"There has never been an incident that I can remember, that a car was accidentally on the runway," he said.
This wasn’t the first time sheriff’s deputies found themselves investigating a case that involved Cuffy.
On Dec. 6 1997, Cuffy attempted to attack a deputy with a 3-foot-long razor sharp machete. At the time sheriff’s deputies were attempting to talk Cuffy out of a bedroom attic he had barricaded himself in. He finally came down, but deputies shot him after he made an aggressive move toward a deputy with the machete.
During his trial on two charges of felonious assault, the court found Cuffy not guilty by reason of insanity. A psychologist that evaluated Cuffy for the state earlier in the year testified Cuffy had bipolar disorder.
Both sheriff’s deputies were cleared for shooting Cuffy