A boat and RV dealer who operated a location in Springfield faces up to 15 years in prison, including a possible five years for crimes allegedly committed in Clark County.
Thomas Owens, 42, of Marblehead, the owner of Tom’s Toys Inc., pleaded guilty to three counts of prohibited acts of involving certificates of title on Thursday, according to Ottawa County Common Pleas Court records. The felonies were committed in Clark, Fairfield and Ottawa counties, court records say.
In October, Owens was indicted on 15 felony counts, including eight counts of prohibited acts involving certificate of title, five counts of theft and two counts of grand theft of a motor vehicle, according to Ottawa County court records.
Owens had been accused of selling vehicles without giving titles in those counties in 2016 and 2017, court records allege.
The other charges were dismissed as part of a plea deal, the Port Clinton News-Herald reported Friday. The agreement requires Owens to pay restitution to more than 30 known victims in the case in those counties, the newspaper reported.
Owens owned three dealerships in Ohio, including a location at 4815 Urbana Road in Springfield. The other locations were in Lancaster and Port Clinton. The dealership sold and rents RVs, boats, trucks and other off-road vehicles.
The Springfield dealership appeared closed last fall. No vehicles were parked on the lot and the showroom appeared empty. A phone number to the business was disconnected.
In February of 2016, the business — previously located at 925 Upper Valley Pike — applied to the Springfield Board of Zoning Appeals to convert a vacant shopping center across the street into a dealership lot for recreational vehicles.
The business was forced to temporarily close in 2014 due to zoning issues at its Springfield Twp. location at the former Par 3 golf course. The dealership later reopened after coming to a compromise with trustees.
Owens is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 21.
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