Delivery Man Charged With Stealing Rival Newspapers

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A newspaper delivery man routinely stole a rival publication from curbside tubes over a 10-month period, police said Monday.

Dennis Powell, 60, of Conneaut, was charged with theft, a misdemeanor that carries a maximum six-month jail sentence and $1,000 fine.

Police Lt. Bob Zimmerman said Powell, who delivers The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer, was seen taking The (Ashtabula) Star-Beacon from delivery tubes in this far northeast Ohio community Jan. 24. Powell formerly delivered the Star-Beacon.

A Star-Beacon employee investigating complaints of missing newspapers was patrolling the delivery route and saw Powell removing the papers, police said. Subscribers began reporting the disappearing newspapers in March.

Between two and eight subscribers were affected daily, police said. Value of the missing papers ranged from $548 to $648, Zimmerman said.

Powell could not be reached to comment. A message was left at a phone listed for the address given on the arrest report.

Mark Shorts, circulation director for the Star-Beacon, said Powell had been let go several years ago because he was undependable. Messages seeking comment on Powell’s employment status were left at The Plain Dealer.

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