Orrville man requests more time before plea

An Orrville man accused of running from police and having a loaded firearm on him told the court he needed more time before entering a plea as scheduled.

Richard "Taco" Phillips, 27, 12682 Burton City Road, has been indicted in Wayne County Common Pleas Court on charges of having weapons under disability (a third-degree felony), trafficking in counterfeit controlled substances (a fifth-degree felony) and misdemeanor resisting arrest.

During a scheduled hearing Tuesday in which Phillips was expected to enter a plea, his attorney, Public Defender John Leonard, instead said his client needed more time to discuss his options.

Leonard said there seems to be some "confusion" his client has regarding the case. Apparently some of Phillips' friends gave him advice, which led to his wanting to discuss the case further with Leonard.

It was mentioned Phillips thought about requesting a suppression hearing, but Judge Mark K. Wiest told him he did not see any suppression issues. Instead, he set another pretrial for Tuesday.

The charges stem from an incident April 8 when agents with the Medway Drug Enforcement Agency and Orrville Police Department located Phillips at a gas station on South Main Street in Orrville. Phillips had an active warrant, and when law enforcement informed him of the warrant he allegedly pushed past an officer at the store and took off on foot.

Phillips reportedly was seen, according to court documents, pull a firearm. But after an officer pulled his weapon and ordered him to the ground, Phillips threw the gun and complied with the order.

He allegedly told officers he was drunk at the time. He was found with a baggie containing a rock-like substance on him.

The firearm -- a Smith and Wesson .40-caliber handgun -- was loaded with one round. It was determined to have been stolen in 2008 out of a vehicle in Massillon.

Phillips was not permitted to have a firearm after he was found delinquent of robbery as a juvenile in 2004. That case originated from Wayne County.

By STEVEN F. HUSZAI @the-daily-record.com

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