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Amber Alert: ‘He stole my kids!’ dad says after SUV with 3 children taken

Published: Saturday, March 03, 2018 @ 4:44 PM
Updated: Sunday, March 04, 2018 @ 3:08 AM

Howard Mullis

A desperate father called 911 after he saw a man drive off with his SUV with his three small children inside.

“Oh my God, he stole my truck! My kids are in the car!” the man shouted in a 911 call obtained by our news partner WCPO-TV in Cincinnati.

A suspect, identified as 33-year-old Howard Mullis of Cleves, is in custody accused of stealing the SUV with the three children inside — two 4-year-olds and a 1-year-old, while the father theft them alone to go into the Pit Stop convenience store on West Galbraith Road.

The incident triggered an Amber Alert and massive search that also included the children’s father who hopped inside a witness’ car so they could follow the SUV.

The boy and two girls are Cameron Wells, 4, Camiyah Fields, 4, and Laiyah Wells, 1, according to the Amber Alert, which has since been canceled.

“I’m in the car with somebody. We’re chasing him. He stole my kids!”

The driver told the 911 dispatcher he just happened to be there when the auto theft and kidnapping suspect took off. “I saw what happened so I said, ‘Come on!’ ” and urged the children’s father to get inside.

The thief sped off and crossed the center line several times trying to elude them, police said. 

“We were so close. We were right there ... Oh, God, he was flying,” the driver said on the 911 call.

The suspect got away from them, but after a harrowing 90 minutes, the children were reunited with family.

The children and SUV were found around 4:30 p.m. at 8401 Colerain Ave., outside America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses near Walmart. An employee noticed the vehicle, a silver 2004 Volkswagen Touareg, in the lot and called police, WCPO reported.

Mullis was apprehended around 5:30 p.m., police said. He is being held in the Hamilton County Justice Center.

Family members declined to speak to WCPO after the incident.

Police have not released further details about what charges Mullins faces.

UPDATE @ 5 p.m.

Three children who were the subject of an Amber Alert were found in a shopping center parking lot off Colerain Avenue, WCPO reported.

The Amber Alert has been canceled.

The children and the vehicle were found just after 4:30 outside America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses, near Walmart, at 8401 Colerain Ave.

The suspect has not been found but is believed to be nearby.


An Amber Alert is in effect for three young children missing from Colerain Twp. in suburban Cincinnati.

The boy and two younger girls are Cameron Wells, 4, Camiyah Fields, 3, and Laiyah Wells, 1.

They were last seen with Howard Mullis, 33, of Cleves, in a silver 2004 Volkswagen Touareg with Ohio license plate HIM7552.

Mullis is identified as a man who allegedly stole the SUV with the three children alone inside around 3 p.m. while their father was inside the Pit Stop convenience store on West Galbraith Road, our media partners at WCPO reported.

Anyone with information is urged to call 911 or the Colerain Police Department, 513-321-2677.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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Man pleads guilty in 2016 Dayton vehicular homicide case

Published: Monday, February 26, 2018 @ 4:34 PM

Benny Jewett IV
Benny Jewett IV

A Dayton man pleaded guilty Monday to aggravated vehicular homicide in the 2016 crash of two vehicles fleeing separate attempted traffic stops.

Benny Jewett IV, 23, was to go on trial on six counts related to the May 7, 2016 death of Tyler Cross, 22, of Dayton. Cross was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Steven Swain.

RELATED: Dead man identified in fatal traffic stop collision

Instead, Jewett pleaded guilty to three counts — vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and failure to comply with the order or signal of a police officer — in exchange for three counts being dismissed.

Jewett is scheduled to be sentenced March 20.

Heroin was found in both vehicles, one of which was stolen, according to police accounts. A handgun also was found in one vehicle. The crash happened at Ruth and Jerome avenues.

MORE: Read other stories from Mark Gokavi

Dayton Maj. Matt Carper said in 2016 that out of concern for public safety, officers did not pursue either vehicle after they sped away from separate, attempted traffic stops.

The first attempted traffic stop was of a silver Toyota reported stolen out of Harrison Twp.

Carper said the Toyota nearly struck a police cruiser. The officer tried to stop the vehicle but it sped away and the officer did not pursue.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow Mark Gokavi on Twitter or Facebook

Around the same time in a separate incident, police attempted to stop a gray Chrysler for minor traffic violations and it sped away. Carper said the officer did not pursue the Chrysler, which was a rental car with New York license plates.

The two cars collided when the Chrysler, heading north on Ruth Avenue, T-boned the silver Toyota, which was traveling at a high rate of speed eastbound on Jerome Avenue, Carper said then.

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UPDATE: Brock Turner’s appeal arguments ‘all lack merit,’ prosecutor says

Published: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 2:17 PM

Brock Turner, seen in a 2017 Greene County Sheriff’s Office sex offender photo. CONTRIBUTED
Brock Turner, seen in a 2017 Greene County Sheriff’s Office sex offender photo. CONTRIBUTED

California’s attorney general responded to Brock Turner’s appeal effort in a filing made public Monday, arguing the Ohio sex offender was not deprived of due process or victim to prosecutorial misconduct during his 2016 trial.

In the 95-page court brief reviewed by the Dayton Daily News, the state’s attorney said Turner’s “claims of error all lack merit” and “could not — separately or together — infringe” on the Oakwood High School graduate’s legal rights.

MORE: Brock Turner’s Dayton Character witnesses key part of appeal

Turner’s new attorney, Eric Multhaup, filed a 172-page appeal in December seeking to clear his client of a conviction stemming from the January 2015 assault of a 22-year-old woman while Turner was a student and swimmer at Stanford University.

The appeal argued Turner was deprived of due process and alleged prosecutorial misconduct — in part by the use of the word “dumpster” in describing the location of the assault — as reasons he should receive a new trial. Multhaup did not respond to a request for comment Monday.  

A jury found Turner guilty on three felony counts: assault with intent to commit rape of an intoxicated or unconscious person, penetration of an intoxicated person, and penetration of an unconscious person. Turner was sentenced by Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky to six months in jail, but served three months of the sentence.

The case — and Turner’s sentence — sparked a nationwide controversy and wide-ranging discussions about sexual assaults on college campuses.

The state argues there was “substantial evidence from which a rational jury could find appellant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of all three charges.”

“That evidence included testimony by two independent eyewitnesses who saw appellant ‘thrusting’ on top of the victim half-naked and as she lay unresponsive on the ground,” the state’s brief said.

Turner’s attorney argued his client “was deprived of due process, a fair trial, and his right to present a defense” when the judge restricted testimony from four individuals with Dayton-area ties: Turner’s friend, an ex-girlfriend and two swim coaches.

MORE: Brock Turner’s classmates describe Oakwood party culture

Multhaup argued the court erroneously restricted the testimony of the four “to the trait of sexual non-aggression relevant to his conduct at the time of the offense … and excluded it as to appellant’s honesty and veracity.”

California’s response disputes Multhaup’s claim, arguing Turner’s “reputation for veracity among those who knew and liked him in high school was not the primary, or even a relevant, issue in the case.”

Multhaup also claimed prosecutors “malevolently” used the phrase “behind-the-dumpster” to describe the location of the incident because it implied Turner wanted to shield the incident from view and because “it implied moral depravity, callousness, and culpability on the appellant’s part…”

The state again disputed Multhaup’s claim, arguing Turner himself said the encounter occurred behind a dumpster.

California Deputy Attorney General Alisha Carlile filed the state’s brief Friday in California’s 6th Appellate District Court.

An Oakwood native, Turner is serving a three-year probation. He now lives in Greene County and is a Tier III sex offender, according to Ohio’s sex offender registry. The designation means he is required to register with the county every 90 days.

Read more stories from the Dayton Daily News:

» Ohio lawmaker stands by gun-carrying students comment despite critics

» Fairborn police: Schools won’t release records about arrested 12-year-old

» Menards to build new Fairborn store

» FBI offers $15K reward for missing teen boy who saw father killed

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Ex-Logan County superintendent gets prison in child sex case

Published: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 9:20 AM
Updated: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 10:36 AM

            Patrick J. O’Donnell appears in Logan County Common Pleas Court on Monday for his sentencing. Jeff Guerini/Staff
Patrick J. O’Donnell appears in Logan County Common Pleas Court on Monday for his sentencing. Jeff Guerini/Staff

UPDATE @ 10:20 a.m.: Patrick O’Donnell, the former Indian Lake superintendent who pleaded to a count of gross sexual imposition, will spend more than four years in prison.

He was sentenced today to 54 months in prison. He also will have to register as a Tier Two sex offender upon his release from prison.

FIRST POST: The former Indian Lake superintendent who pleaded to a count of gross sexual imposition will be sentenced this morning.

Patrick O’Donnell who was found guilty after entering an Alford plea just before opening arguments in the trial against him were to begin last month.

RELATED: Ex-Logan County superintendent takes plea deal in child sex case

He faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. He will also have to register as a sex offender for 25 years.

An Alford plea isn’t an admission of guilt, defense attorney Sam Shamansky said, but a plea that accepts its punishment.

O’Donnell had faced 14 child-sex related charges, including rape, gross sexual imposition and sexual battery. He entered the Alford plea to one count of gross sexual imposition and the rest of the charges were dismissed as part of a plea deal.


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Middletown man faces 28 charges related to theft from 93-year-old neighbor

Published: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 3:14 PM

            Shawn M. Hill, 29, of Middletown, was indicted on two counts of theft from a person in a protected class and 26 counts of forgery.
Shawn M. Hill, 29, of Middletown, was indicted on two counts of theft from a person in a protected class and 26 counts of forgery.

A 29-year-old Middletown man is accused of forging 26 checks and making cash withdrawals from a 93-year-old neighbor’s account worth $8,500 in late 2015 and early 2016.

A list issued today by the Warren County Prosecutor’s office indicates Shawn M. Hill was indicted on two counts of theft from a person in a protected class and 26 counts of forgery.

MORE: State investigation shows claims against nursing home unsubstantiated

County Prosecutor David Fornshell said Hill also asked to borrow money while awaiting a settlement from a dog-bite case, “providing forged documentation indicating he was going to receive significant settlement proceeds.”

The neighbor loaned him $34,000, only to learn “there never was a dog-bite settlement” and was never repaid, Fornshell added in a text message.

MORE: Elder abuse cases on the rise in Clark County

Fornshell said the loan problem was discovered first, the other allegations later after further investigation.

Hill was free while awaiting arraignment, scheduled for April 6.

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