Tower wants bail continued until appeal heard

Last updated: July 15. 2014 11:50PM - 2303 Views
By - rdupuis@timesleader.com

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WILKES-BARRE — Towing company owner Leo A. Glodzik III is asking to be released on unsecured bail while an appeal of his Luzerne County prison sentence in a theft case is pending.
According to a motion filed Tuesday by defense attorney Joseph Sklarosky Sr., because Glodzik has decided to appeal, and because his sentence is less than two years, “he has the same right to bail as before verdict” under Pennsylvania rules of criminal procedure.
A hearing on the bail request, which had been scheduled for this morning, was postponed Tuesday afternoon without a new date being set.
LAG Towing owner Glodzik, 43, of Wilkes-Barre, was the city's exclusive tower for more than eight years, until May 31, 2013. That's the day he was arrested on accusations of stealing $2,100 planted inside a Cadillac he towed four months earlier, believing the car had been seized from a drug dealer. The cash was bait money planted as part of an FBI sting operation.
A county jury on May 15 found Glodzik guilty of one felony theft count following a two-day trial.
Judge Lesa S. Gelb last Friday sentenced him to spend three to 12 months behind bars, but also ruled that Glodzik would be immediately available for work release. He is scheduled to report to county prison by 9 a.m. Friday.
In his motion, Sklarosky supported his argument with the following points:
• Glodzik is a lifelong Pennsylvania resident whose family lives in the area, and he is neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community.
• Glodzik has been on bail in the past, and always has appeared for court dates.
• Glodzik is gainfully employed.
• Glodzik is not addicted to alcohol or drugs.
When Glodzik appeared for sentencing last week, Sklarosky made many of the same arguments as he sought probation or home confinement for his client.
First Assistant District Attorney Sam Sanguedolce argued that “anything less than an actual period of incarceration would minimize the impact of the offense.”
Gelb agreed.
“I am troubled by the facts of the case,” Gelb said before imposing sentence, which also includes 20 hours of community service.
Glodzik had little to say to reporters after the penalty was handed down.
Sklarosky, however, told the media he felt the sentence was unfair, adding that other Luzerne County defendants who had stolen much larger amounts — including thefts from fire companies and non-profit groups — had been given lesser sentences with no jail time.
“Leo's in the same position,” Sklarosky said Friday. “But because his name is Leo Glodzik, he's got to go to jail, and that's unfair.”

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