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Former Thief River Falls officer hit with new felony charge

A former Thief River Falls police officer serving a year in jail for possessing stolen property made his first appearance in court Monday on a new felony charge.

Paul Kezar, 38, is accused of selling a 2001 Chevrolet Suburban that he had used as collateral in getting a $9,350 loan from Northern State Bank in Thief River Falls.

A criminal complaint says Kezar received $5,000 for the Suburban in March 2010 without telling the bank.

A message left for his public defender was not returned Monday. Kezar is due back in court April 22. The charge carries a maximum of three years in prison.

In October 2009, a search of Kezar's home turned up stolen items such as lawnmowers and snowmobiles, worth a total of more than $50,000, authorities said.

Kezar pleaded guilty to two felony charges of possessing stolen property in Pennington County, Minn., and two such charges in Marshall County, Minn.

The Thief River Falls Police Department hired Kezar in January 2009, and city officials fired him in October 2009 after he was charged.