2007-12-01 / News

Former council member indicted

Former council By Scott Rawdon

NEWARK- Former Buckeye Lake Village Council member John Cortez was indicted on a single felony weapon charge Nov. 26 by a Licking County grand jury.

The indictment stems from a raid of Cortez' Buckeye Lake home Nov. 8. According to the Licking County Sheriff's Department, his home was searched after the department received information that Cortez, 41, may be involved in misconduct with a minor.

Sheriff Randy Thorp said during the raid, officers found three firearms in Cortez' home. Cortez was charged with possessing weapons under disability, a third degree felony; it's a felony for Cortez to possess weaponry because he was convicted of a burglary in 1991. A third degree felony carries a potential eight year jail term.

Thorp said Tuesday that an investigation continues into "things recovered pursuant to the (search) warrant," but he wouldn't comment further because of the continuing investigation. Cortez remains free on $5,000 bond, which he posted after turning himself in to authorities Nov. 13. Thorp said there is no time frame on the investigation.

"That's where we're at with it," he said.

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