CLEVELAND – Cleveland police and a persistent panhandler have been engaged in a longtime war of wills at a homely west side intersection in a battle that subsides only when the man is jailed.
Records reviewed by The Associated Press show 60-year-old David Spaulding has been cited more than 250 times for panhandling since 2013 with nearly all of the violations in a neighborhood best known for where Ariel Castro once held three young women captive.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio sued Cleveland in federal court this week alleging the city's panhandling laws are unconstitutional because they make pleas of poverty a crime. An ACLU attorney says panhandling laws are ineffective.
A city spokesman and police officials declined to comment about Spaulding or the ACLU lawsuit.