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Three Toledoans Criminally Charged in Tire-Dumping Scheme


(TOLEDO, Ohio) —  A Lucas County grand jury has indicted two Toledo residents in an illegal tire-dumping operation involving thousands of scrap tires, Attorney General Dave Yost announced today.

Chad Gatter and Amanda Wagner face one count each of open dumping of solid wastes and transporting scrap tires without a registration certificate, all unclassified felonies.

In addition, misdemeanor complaints have been filed against Osama Al Awkati accusing him of causing another individual to transport scrap tires without the state-mandated registration certificate.

“These guys are a public nuisance as they have created a dump in a neighborhood,” Yost said. “This is a blatant disregard for the law, the environment and the public. Criminal charges should help clean up the problem for good.” 

Gatter was charged with misdemeanor dumping in 2020 by the city of Toledo. Despite the legal consequences, he continued the illegal activity.

The indictments follow an investigation launched in September 2022 by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Toledo Police. The agencies referred the case to Yost’s Environmental Enforcement Section after allegations arose that the trio engaged in a scheme involving the illegal transport and dumping of scrap tires at a residential property owned by Gatter and Wagner.

The Environmental Enforcement Unit of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation’ (BCI) conducted comprehensive surveillance, capturing Gatter and Wagner as they collected scrap tires from tire shops and dumped them in their backyard.

Agents also twice observed scrap tires being gathered from Awkati’s car-repair shop and found that Gatter and Wagner illegally profited by receiving cash for the collected tires.

Ohio EPA Director Anne Vogel, whose agency has incurred $15,000 in costs to clean up the site, applauded the enforcement crackdown.

“This property has been an eyesore and health hazard in this community for far too long,” she said. “Last year, we removed more than 2,000 tires from the site following reports from neighbors. We appreciate Attorney General Yost taking this enforcement action to hold the owners responsible and deter others from illegal dumping, which can create a fire hazard and attract unwanted insects and vermin.”

Toledo Police Chief Michael Troendle said that such joint efforts are crucial to winning the fight against illegal dumping. 

“We are dedicated to maintaining partnerships with state, federal and local agencies, working collaboratively to eliminate blight and combat crime within our city,” he said. “We express our gratitude to Attorney General Yost for his resolute commitment to enhancing the cleanliness and safety of both the city of Toledo and the state of Ohio.”

Indictments contain allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless proved guilty in a court of law.

Tires dumped

The charges underscore Attorney General Yost’s efforts to combat pollution to help ensure the well-being of communities throughout the state. His Shine a Light on Dumpers campaign targets illegal open dumping, including improper disposal of scrap tires and demolition debris – all of which blights Ohio neighborhoods.

Shine a Light on Dumpers offers a range of online resources encompassing awareness, legal guidance, training, and investigative and prosecutorial support provided by the Attorney General’s Office.

Hannah Hundley: 614-906-9113


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