Probe of private ID stolen by police begins

The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that a State Highway Patrol probe into how state liquor agents gave a real person’s identity to an undercover informant could lead all the way to the Miami County prosecutor’s involvement.

From the story:

    The investigation will center on how the liquor agents, who enforce Ohio’s alcohol-permit laws, came into possession of a woman’s driver’s license and how it was given to a confidential informant working for the Troy Police Department, patrol spokesman Lt. Rick Zwayer said.

    Even Miami County Prosecutor Gary Nasal’s involvement could be scrutinized, Zwayer said.

    Investigators "are going to look into those things," Zwayer said. "That’s part of a thorough and accurate investigation to look toward those leads, take them."

    Nasal, who had helped coordinate the sting operation that eventually closed the Total Xposure nude dance club in late 2003, said he welcomed the investigation.

Perhaps Nasal is hoping for the same type of "investigation" he gave Sheriff Kevin O'Leary, in a case involving the illegal release of concealed handgun license-holders' private information.

Again, from the story:

    Ohio Rep. Jim Hughes, the Columbus Republican who sponsored the 2002 change, said an amendment will be introduced today in the Senate Criminal Justice Committee clarifying when police can use a person’s identifying information.

    The amendment will allow police to use a person’s information only to investigate identity theft when that person is the victim, Hughes said. The amendment also will require that law enforcement get written or verbal permission from the victim, he said.

    "They can't use it in another investigation," Hughes said. "I disagree with the interpretation of the prosecutor from Troy, Ohio, and every subsequent prosecutor or law-enforcement person I've spoken with disagrees with it, too."

Related Story:
Gary Nasal's 8 mo. "investigation" yields no indictment of Sheriff O'Leary

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