Ohio Highway Patrol official ousted over alleged tobacco smuggling plot

An Ohio Highway Patrol official has been relieved of his duties in the fallout over an alleged smuggling plot involving prisoners working at the Ohio Governor’s Residence.

Patrol spokeswoman Lindsay Komlanc said Friday that Maj. Robert Booker was taken off his job as commander of investigative services. The office’s duties include protecting the governor.

Booker already was scheduled to retire next week.

Authorities said they think a woman planned to leave tobacco behind the mansion for an inmate worker on Jan. 9.

They chose to warn the woman and not stage a bust, partly out of concern for Gov. Ted Strickland’s safety.

A related report shows that several pouches of tobacco were found at an inmate work site at the residence on Jan. 13.

A message was left at a Columbus phone listing for Robert Booker.

source: newarkadvocate.com

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