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Man pleads guilty to OVI following July traffic stop where gun was found

WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) — A Warrensville Heights man who was arrested in July by Liberty police on gun and OVI charges pleaded guilty Tuesday to the OVI.

Jeffrey Howard, 42, entered his plea before Judge Andrew Logan in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court. He will be sentenced after a presentencing report is completed.

Howard was arrested about 1 a.m. July 31 after an SUV he was driving was pulled over in the 800 block of Churchill-Hubbard Road for an expired registration. Reports said a records check showed that Howard at one time had a concealed carry permit, but it was revoked through the Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office, although a reason was not listed in reports.

Reports said when asked, Howard said there was a gun in the SUV, and he thought it was in the trunk. Howard was asked out of the car and while speaking to police, his speech was slurred and he smelled of alcohol, reports said.

Police later found a loaded .45-caliber handgun on the driver’s side floorboard, reports said. He also denied drinking, saying he last had a beer “hours ago.” He was later indicted by a grand jury on charges of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle and carrying a concealed weapon.

Court records show that in exchange for his plea to the OVI, the gun charge was dismissed.

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