DELPHOS - A Columbus man appeared in Lima Municipal Court on Tuesday for a felony charge of identity fraud after his arrest by Delphos Police officers.

Police were called to the Delphos Post Office the evening of Aug. 30 for a suspicious male who had entered into the post office to pick up mail belonging to a Delphos resident. The suspect produced an Ohio Identification Card with a photo claiming to be this Delphos resident. An alert postal employee contacted police to respond, suspecting this man was an imposter.

Police arrived and made contact with the man, who began to claim he was this Delphos resident and he was there to pick up his mail. The man then took off running behind the post office in an attempt to flee in a car with Illinois plates.

An officer struggled with the suspect by his awaiting car. The suspect fought with the officer in an attempt to run and he fell down the bank and ended up in the Miami Erie Canal. He was taken into custody moments later.

The vehicle was impounded and a female passenger in that car was interviewed and later released.

The suspect was taken to St. Rita’s Medical Center for medical evaluation and then the Allen County Jail. The suspect finally told the officer his true identity at the jail, knowing he was going to be fingerprinted.

The suspect was identified as Benjamin K. Appiah, 29, from Columbus. Detectives have discovered that the defendant has a lengthy arrest record involving identity theft/fraud in multiple jurisdictions in Ohio over the past several years.

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for 9 a.m. on Monday. Bond was set at $50,000 cash/surety. Appiah remains in the Allen County Jail.

The Allen County Grand Jury will hear this identity fraud case and may consider more criminal charges.

No more information available as the investigation continues.