Akron Police Chief Intends to Plead Guilty to Misdemeanor Charge Next Month

AKRON, Ohio — Akron’s former police chief, who appeared at his arraignment Tuesday, intends to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge when he appears in court again next month, his attorney said.

James Nice, 63, is charged with attempted unauthorized use of a police database, a first-degree misdemeanor. The charge came out of a months-long investigation into misconduct allegations that led to Nice’s resignation.

Nice pleaded not guilty to the charge on Tuesday afternoon, but he is expected to change his plea to guilty when he makes his next court appearance Feb. 13 in front of Judge Jason Wells, defense attorney Henry Hilow said in a phone interview after the hearing.

“It is our intention to plead guilty at that time,” Hilow said.

Nice was given a personal recognizance bond at the hearing, Hilow said.

Nice is accused of trying to access the Law Enforcement Automated Data System, or LEADS, database on Feb. 10, according to a bill of information filed in the case.

Charges brought by information typically signal that a defendant intends to plead guilty in a case.

The Summit County Prosecutor’s Office asked Cuyahoga County prosecutors to handle the case to avoid any appearance of bias. A spokesman for the prosecutor’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday afternoon.

Nice, an Akron native and former FBI supervisor, became Akron’s police chief in 2011. He resigned Aug. 27, 2017 amid allegations he improperly interfered in a criminal case involving his nephew.

The nephew, Joseph Nice, was indicted April 12, 2017 on charges of grand theft, forgery and tampering with evidence charges related to accusations that he forged a motor vehicle title, according to court records.

Cuyahoga County prosecutors dropped the charges against the 41-year-old nephew shortly after they took over the investigation into the former police chief.

The former police chief also resigned amid allegations of conduct unbecoming of an officer and inappropriate contact with a city employee. Officials said James Nice was accused of making derogatory comments that were racial in nature, and the Akron Beacon Journal reported he is accused of coercing a female employee into a relationship.

Source: http://www.cleveland.com/akron/index.ssf/2018/01/former_akron_police_chief_inte.html

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Filming Cops
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Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

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