A suspected drug dealer who didn't show up for a court hearing this week is wanted on a related arrest warrant.
Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway issued a failure-to-appear warrant early Tuesday afternoon for Salvador Rodriguez, 40. Court administrator Linda Stower said Huron County Public Defender David Longo couldn't locate his client by the judge's noon deadline.
Rodriguez was scheduled to appear for a pretrial hearing Monday. When Conway called the defendant's case, Rodriguez wasn't in the courtroom.
While Longo said he didn't know where Rodriguez was, he said his secretary "heard from one of our (clients) who reported being broken down somewhere." The public defender's secretary didn't have a name for the caller.
Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Richard Woodruff requested the judge issue a warrant for Rodriguez's arrest. Conway gave the defendant and his attorney until noon Tuesday to gather more information about the man's whereabouts.
Rodriguez is charged with trafficking in heroin in connection with an April 20 incident.
The Norwalk Police Department arrested Rodriguez and Luis M. Lopez, 25, of Lorain, that night on an allegation they sold drugs to a confidential informant in the city. The state Highway Patrol stopped the 2001 Ford Escape that Lopez was driving in Milan a short time after the controlled buy, authorities said.
Police Detective Sgt. Jim Fulton has said officers recovered the buy money totaling $180, a small amount of suspected marijuana and drug paraphernalia. He also said Lopez's girlfriend, a 27-year-old Lorain woman who owns the Escape, and their 3-year-old daughter were in the sport utility vehicle at the time of the suspected drug buy.
On June 7, a Huron County grand jury indicted Lopez on trafficking in heroin. Fulton has said the suspect reportedly sold heroin to a confidential informant April 17 in the Norwalk Walmart parking lot.
Authorities issued a summons for Lopez's arrest June 10 and then a warrant for his arrest Aug. 26, according to court records.