August 29, 2014

Medina
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Medina files lawsuit to empty out, lock up ‘nuisance’ house on Bronson Street

Medina city officials are urging a Medina County judge to padlock a house on Bronson Street while a lawsuit to get the house declared a nuisance is pending.

Medina Law Director Gregory Huber filed the lawsuit this month, asking county Common Pleas Judge Christopher J. Collier to evict the home’s residents because “illegal drug activity at the premises has created a hazard to the community and a nuisance.”

Named as defendants in the lawsuit are David L. Reed, who lives at the home, and his brother, Edward S. Reed, who is the owner.

In the seven-page complaint, Huber details a series of drug-related criminal activity at the home, 416 Bronson St., that dates back to 2007 — including police purchasing crack cocaine from David Reed eight times between 2007 and 2010.

Huber also listed two search warrants executed at the residence in 2009 and 2013 that turned up narcotics. The 2013 search resulted in narcotics found on a female resident.

The most recent incident was Feb. 28, when police executed a search warrant after a woman said she’d been held at knifepoint at the home by Trent Turner, 25, of Cleveland. Three of the five people at the home — not including Reed — were found to be wanted by police.

In addition to the lawsuit, Huber filed a motion for preliminary injunction on March 13, asking Collier to bar Reed, 53, and any other residents from entering the home while the lawsuit is pending.

“Defendants have maintained an environment that promotes and permits criminal activity at the premises, endangers life and health, offends the senses, obstructs reasonable and comfortable use of property and burdens the Medina Police Department and the Medina County Drug Task Force,” Huber wrote.

“This condition and activity at the premises over a sustained period of time has created a hazard and annoyance to the community and a public nuisance,” Huber wrote. “This nuisance activity at the premises will continue indefinitely unless abated by order of this court.”

The judge has not yet set any court dates.

Neither David Reed nor Edward Reed could be reached for comment. But in earlier interviews, he said he hasn’t sold drugs since he was last released from prison in 2011. David Reed acknowledged having friends with criminal records but said he doesn’t tolerate crime in his home.

Misdemeanor charges against David Reed since 2011 include drug abuse for marijuana possession, driving under suspension and having an open container in 2013 and assault in 2014.

David Reed’s attorney, Bob Campbell, said he doesn’t think the city has a case because his client has had no felonies since his release from prison.

“It’s really, I think, the height of absurdity what they’re trying to do,” Campbell said. “They’re trying to throw a man out of his house when he hasn’t been involved in any felony activity in years.”

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.