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Prosecutor drops one charge against Met Housing receptionist


August 25. 2013 7:51AM
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LIMA — One of the charges against a receptionist at the Allen Metropolitan Housing Authority was dropped Wednesday.



Lima City Prosecutor Jeff Routson said the charge of obstructing official business was dropped against Cheryl Lawson as part of a trial strategy that includes going forward with two other charges.



Lawson was scheduled to stand trial April 18 on the charge. She was accused of blocking the office entrance and impeding police officers trying to enter during a raid of the agency on March 27, 2012.



Lawson also is charged with falsification and workers’ compensation fraud. She is scheduled to stand trial May 2 on those charges.



“We’re preparing to go forward with that,” Routson said.



Those charges accuse Lawson of filing a false claim that was denied by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. She filed the claim saying she was injured during the police raid.



Lawson is one of three agency employees facing charges. Executive Director Anna Schnippel faces trial April 24 on a charge of falsification. She is accused of signing off on a fraudulent workers’ compensation claim Lawson submitted.



A third employee, Bruce Monford, the brother of housing board president the Rev. Lamont Monford, was indicted on eight counts of tampering with records and two counts of theft in office. The charges allege crimes took place related to Bruce Monford's duties as a housing inspector for the agency.





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