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Off-duty Cleveland police officer charged with OVI after allegedly crashing into two parked cars

Cleveland Police Sgt. pleads not guilty
Cleveland police
Posted at 6:08 PM, Jan 25, 2021

LAKEWOOD, Ohio — An off-duty Cleveland police officer has been charged with OVI and failure to control after he allegedly ran into two parked cars in Lakewood on Sunday, January 17. Police were called to Edwards Avenue at about 7:30 p.m.

Several 911 calls were made to Lakewood police.

“I’m on Edwards Avenue and a car just drove down the street and smashed into another car and is trying to pull away,” said one caller.

“I heard a big boom and someone yelling call 911,” said another.

When Lakewood police officers arrived, they discovered the man allegedly behind the wheel was off duty Cleveland Police Officer Tom Hodous. The 38-year-old is a sergeant in the city’s fourth district. According to the police report, Hodous lost control of his car hitting one car and then a second.

On a Lakewood officer's body camera video, Hodous is heard telling officers, ”He pulled out, he reversed back there, I turned right.”

A first responder asked, “Have you had anything to drink tonight?"

"A couple,” Hodous said.

"Alright buddy, looks like you got a trip to the hospital. I don't know how much you've been drinking but you've been stumbling the whole way," said a first responder on the video.

Cleveland police said Hodous was placed on restricted duty on January 19. Cleveland police also said there will be an administrative review after the case is completed.

Hodous pleaded not guilty to OVI and Failure to Control.

“We are going to take advantage of the same constitution he protects every day. Hopefully, the system will work,” said his attorney Kevin Spellacy.

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