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Chief: Firefighter Says He’s Sorry

September 30, 1986

FOSTORIA, Ohio (AP) _ A firefighter accused of tossing paint-filled balloons at what some say is an image of Christ on a soybean tank says he is sorry, according to the fire chief.

Ricky J. Sims, 34, a firefighter in nearby Findlay, faces a charge of criminal damaging for allegedly throwing about 15 paint-filled balloons at the tank on Sept. 22.

Reports of the image, which appeared last month, attracted thousands of visitors to the Archer Daniels Midland Co. soybean processing plant and slowed traffic to a crawl along the highway in front of the company.

Sims was irritated by the traffic jams, Findlay Fire Chief Maurice Boecker said Monday.

Sims’ telephone number has been disconnected and he could not be reched for comment Monday.

Company officials say the image is caused by rust stains and primer that are illuminated by floodlights at night.

If convicted, Sims, who is free on bond, could be sentenced to a maximum term of 90 days in jail and fined $750.

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