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Judge orders woman to stay out of Norwalk

Cary Ashby • Jul 23, 2013 at 9:07 AM

A former Norwalk woman accused of possessing two drugs will be staying with her bondswoman in Toledo while she remains out on a $10,000 bond.

The woman overseeing Nicole J. Fertig's bond called the defendant "a friend of the family" at Monday's arraignment.

"I've known her since she was 3 years old," the Toledo woman said.

Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler had requested the judge revoke Fertig's bond in connection with testing positive for "numerous controlled substances."

"I will take control of Nicole. I have no problem with it," said the bondswoman, who had brought Fertig to the courthouse Monday.

About the drug tests, the bondswoman and Huron County Public Defender David Longo said Fertig "used heroin right before she went to jail," so it's possible some of the drug was still in Fertig's system at the time of Monday's drug screen with a probation officer.

Fertig, 23, was indicted Friday by a Huron County grand jury, charged with one count each of possession of heroin and possession of methadone. Leffler said the Norwalk Police Department received a call May 22 from Mickey Mart about two women who had been in the restroom "for a good long time" and officers determined one of them had been shooting up heroin. Fertig's Huron County Common Pleas Court trial date is Oct. 17.

Fertig appeared in court Monday -- two weeks before her scheduled arraignment.

"She was here on a summons. She is here on less than a summons. She wasn't served before she appeared (in court)," Longo said.

"She's been staying with her bondsman in Toledo to stay away from her old cronies," he added.

Judge Jim Conway, at the state's request, prohibited Fertig from being in the Norwalk city limits except for court hearings, probation office visits and random drug screens. The judge said the drug tests would be done "a minimum of one time per week."

The bondswoman started to protest Leffler's request about staying out of Norwalk, but Fertig quickly agreed to the added condition of her bond.

"That's fine," the defendant said.

In late October, Fertig made local news when she was charged with public indecency after several witnesses reported seeing her and a now 38-year-old man having sex in a white GMC truck at the Bob Evans parking lot on Milan Avenue.

For that incident, Fertig was convicted of disorderly conduct Feb. 20 in Norwalk Municipal Court. She was fined $200 and given a 30-day suspended jail sentence. Fertig is prohibited from entering the Bob Evans property during her two years of probation.

Fertig also is banned from Walmart for two years, following a Feb. 4 theft conviction that resulted in a 20-day jail term and $360 in fines and court costs.

Fertig and Eddie Blair, a 36-year-old Spring Street man, were caught shoplifting at the Westwind Drive store in late January, police said.

Blair, incidentally, also was indicted Friday by a Huron County grand jury. Blair is charged with two counts of trafficking in heroin. He was secretly indicted, so the charges weren't made known until after his arrest.

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