Dayton man accused of impersonating Toledo police officer

Joseph E. Steward (Contributed Photo/Lucas County Jail)

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Joseph E. Steward (Contributed Photo/Lucas County Jail)

A Dayton man has been arrested for allegedly pretending to be police officer while attempting to solicit donations in Toledo, according to local media reports.

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Joseph E. Steward, 49, is facing charges of impersonating a peace officer and theft after allegedly telling retail store employees he worked for the Toledo Police Department and was collecting donations for disabled police veterans, according to reports from CBS affiliate WTOL-TV and the Toledo Blade.

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Steward is currently booked in the Lucas County Jail, records indicate. He pleaded not guilty to the charges in court Monday, WTOL-TV reports.

Steward has been accused and was convicted two other times for impersonating police officers, both in the Toledo area.

In 2016, Steward was convicted on an impersonating charge after attempting to solicit donations from a Toledo restaurant, the Toledo Blade reports. When Steward was arrested, he was found with a check written out to Toledo police from a veterinary clinic.

Steward was not sentenced to prison but was given credit for time served, the paper reports.

In 2013, Steward was found guilty after he identified himself as a lieutenant with the Lucas County Sheriff’s Office. A six month prison sentence was suspended, The Blade reports.

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