Police: Stolen Ohio bridge found, man facing theft charge

Posted at 5:51 PM, December 20, 2021 and last updated 9:09 PM, July 21, 2023

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — A 58-foot-long (18-meter) pedestrian bridge stolen from an Ohio city last month has been found and a man is facing charges, police said.

Akron police said investigators acting on tips and other information Friday afternoon found the missing span partially disassembled on property in Sharon Township in neighboring Medina County. A man has been arrested and charged with felony theft, police said.

The Akron bridge, described as a Lego-like structure, once crossed a river in Akron’s Middlebury Run Park near Goodyear’s world headquarters. It was taken down in 2003-04 as part of a wetland restoration project and was stored on park property with plans for it to be reused for a Battered Women’s shelter project.

Police discovered on Nov. 3 that someone had removed the treated deck boards of the 10-foot-wide (3-meter-wide), 6-foot-tall (2-meter-tall) structure. On Nov. 11, they found that the metal frame had been taken.

A 63-year-old man was charged with felony theft, according to Akron police and court records. Authorities allege that he paid a trucking company for crane service and the firm picked up the bridge and took it to Medina County.

The suspect was scheduled for arraignment later this week in Akron Municipal Court. An official said Monday he has no attorney yet; listed phone numbers for him were not in service.

The bridge is expected to be shipped back to Akron in coming days, police said.

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