Conviction overturned, Piqua man facing new charge in connection to attempted Walmart carjacking

Published: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 @ 7:16 PM

Robert C. Riddle
Robert C. Riddle

TROY - A Piqua man pleaded not guilty Monday to a new charge stemming from an incident in which police said he tried to steal a woman’s car in the parking lot of the Piqua Walmart.

Robert Riddle’s 2015 conviction for aggravated robbery in the case was recently overturned by an appeals court.

Riddle, 37, pleaded guilty in October 2015 to felony aggravated robbery and breaking and entering in an Aug. 29, 2015, incident.

Piqua police said he fled the parking lot on foot after the woman screamed as he attempted a carjacking. The gun later was found to be a fake, police said. Riddle was found at his trailer following a two-hour manhut. The breaking and entering charge came from a break-in at a nearby property during the search. 

Riddle was sentenced to 10 years in prison. The 2nd District Court of Appeals recently overturned the aggravated robbery conviction. The court wrote that the deadly weapon notation of the charge was negated by the statement of facts of what occurred during the robbery and that the lawyer for Riddle gave him ineffective assistance in advising him to plead guilty. 

Visiting Judge Timothy Campbell of Greene County heard Riddle's not guilty plea Monday, set a pretrial hearing for April 17 and set bail at $50,000. A visiting judge was assigned because the victim was related to a court employee. 

Riddle has served the 12 months ordered on the breaking and entering charge and remains in prison on a sentence ordered in Shelby County on another case. 

If convicted of the new robbery charge, he could be sentenced to up to eight years in prison.

Flares, not improvised explosive devices, ignited at Florida mall, FBI says

Published: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 9:33 AM
Updated: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 1:04 PM

FBI Says Flares Ignited At Florida Mall

 

Lake Wales police are searching for those responsible for igniting two marine flares Sunday evening near the entrance of the JC Penney at the Eagle Ridge Mall Sunday evening.

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Firefighters responded to reports of an explosion at the mall on 451 Eagle Ridge Drive around 5:20 p.m.

Firefighters initially said that an improvised explosive device had been detonated in a corridor located next to the mall entrance of JC Penney.

The FBI later determined that there was no explosion and no pipe bombs were discovered. Officials also said that the incident didn’t appear to be terrorism-related.

"It appears two items, believed to be marine flares, were ignited in a mall hallway, creating a large amount of smoke, and a backpack was located at the scene," said Andrea Aprea, an FBI spokeswoman. "Bomb technicians examined the contents of the backpack and determined it did not contain any incendiary or explosive devices."

A witness who called 911 told WFTV that she heard a fire alarm sound and saw orange smoke billowing from an object.

The mall was evacuated. No one was injured, but a ceiling and a wall were damaged by the flares, officials said.

After speaking with witnesses, police said they are looking for a person of interest described as a stocky, middle-aged white man wearing a gray shirt and a hat.

Detectives said they will review surveillance footage recorded at a jewelry store in the mall.

The investigation is ongoing.

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Montgomery County inmate found dead in jail cell

Published: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 4:45 PM

Dillon Abplanalp, 28, was found dead early Monday in a cell at the Montgomery County Jail. MONTGOMERY COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
Dillon Abplanalp, 28, was found dead early Monday in a cell at the Montgomery County Jail. MONTGOMERY COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

An inmate died in the Montgomery County Jail early Monday from undetermined causes, according to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s and Coroner’s offices.

Dillon Abplanalp, 28, was found unresponsive at 4:17 a.m. and could not be revived by Dayton Fire Department EMS crews. He was pronounced dead a short time later by the county coroner, said Maj. Matt Haines, the jail administrator.

Haines said Abplanalp was discovered by a corrections officer during an inmate count and wellness check. The officer called for a supervisor and medical personnel, he said.

MORE: Jail body scanners: What do they see and how do they see it?

The Montgomery County Coroner’s office conducted an autopsy Monday, but a cause and manner of death were not yet determined, a spokesman said. Toxicology results are also pending.

During the last six years, at least five other inmates have died in the jail or in a hospital shortly after being removed from the jail, according to Daily News records.

MORE: Justice in the Jailhouse

Haines said Abplanalp’s death did not appear to be caused by drugs smuggled into the jail, a constant threat that led the jail to recently install a full-body scanner that will soon become operational.

RELATED: Montgomery County Jail body scanner ‘going to be a busy machine’

“I have no reason at this time to believe it was an overdose,” Haines said. “It appears to have been a medical emergency. There may have been multiple factors.”

TRENDING: Lead in Ohio schools: What we know now

Abplanalp was confined in a cell by himself on the first floor, making it unlikely another inmate had a role in the death, Haines said.

“There was nothing in there to make it look like a suspicious death,” he said.

Closing arguments Tuesday in Montgomery County Jail mattress lawsuit

Published: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 3:47 PM


            David Cooper
David Cooper

The civil lawsuit of a former Montgomery County Jail inmate who was denied a mattress could reach a federal jury Tuesday.

Testimony wrapped up just after noon in David O. Cooper’s lawsuit against Montgomery County in Dayton’s U.S. District Court.

RELATED: Inmate slept on toilet; jail staff hoped to protect him from himself

U.S. District Court Judge Walter Rice released jurors until Tuesday morning, when Rice said jury instructions and closing arguments will commence.

Defendants rested earlier Monday before Cooper took the stand as a rebuttal witness. His attorney, John Helbling, asked Cooper about the conditions of his stay including how often he was able to shower, what the meal schedule was and the night he and other inmates in the holding cells were given hard mats.

RELATED: Jury selected in federal jail mattress case

Cooper said the mat he received in late September or early October 2012 was inflexible and had no stitching. Cooper also said he never tried to harm himself with the mattresses he had while in general population.

The defendants include Montgomery County, former jail commander Major Daryl Wilson and Capt. Chuck Crosby. Helbling suggested in opening statements that if jurors found the county liable that they could reward damages between $3 million and $4 million.

Court documents indicate the county argues that Cooper’s incarceration conditions do not rise to liability.

RELATED: Trial to start of inmate suing for not getting mattress in jail

The civil lawsuit is the first of several filed against jail staff in recent years for alleged abuse and/or neglect to go to trial.

Four other cases have settled for $888,000 plus the county spent another $444,000 on outside legal counsel and litigation costs, according to county records. Other cases are pending.

RELATED: County spending on lawsuits passes $1 million

JUSTICE IN THE JAILHOUSE: Lawsuits, accusations plague region’s county jails

SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow Mark Gokavi on Twitter or Facebook

Walmart parking lot shooting involved stolen car, drug deal gone bad

Published: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 12:37 PM

Fairfield Twp. police are looking for the suspect who shot a teenager in his leg Saturday after they met up for an alleged drug deal in the Walmart parking lot. The 17-year-old male was shot around 3 p.m. Saturday while he was in the driver s side of a car in the lot, 3201 Princeton Road. The suspect fled in a car that was stolen out of Cincinnati. DAN ACTON/CONTRIBUTED
Dan Acton/Contributed
Fairfield Twp. police are looking for the suspect who shot a teenager in his leg Saturday after they met up for an alleged drug deal in the Walmart parking lot. The 17-year-old male was shot around 3 p.m. Saturday while he was in the driver s side of a car in the lot, 3201 Princeton Road. The suspect fled in a car that was stolen out of Cincinnati. DAN ACTON/CONTRIBUTED(Dan Acton/Contributed)

Fairfield Twp. police are working to piece the different angles recorded by Walmart security cameras to get a better understanding of what happened when a 17-year-old boy was shot in a suspected drug deal gone bad on Saturday.

The teenager, according to witnesses, allegedly set up a drug deal at 3 p.m. Saturday in the parking lot of Walmart on Princeton Road. The alleged deal was set up through a social media interaction, said Fairfield Twp. Police Capt. Doug Lanier.

INITIAL REPORT: Police looking for Walmart shooter

“I believe it occurs quite frequently, which could occur in any parking lot,” he said of alleged drug deals set up via social media. “People do it because they feel it’s a safe place to make the transaction in public, but of course it still doesn’t prevent problems like this one, which was in broad daylight.”

During the alleged drug deal, a male subject shot the teen in the leg. The teen then accelerated his vehicle forward and struck multiple vehicles and a shopping cart corral.

The alleged shooter is described as a light-skin, mixed-race male, possibly 16 to 19 years old, around 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-7 and 135 pounds with black curly hair and a goatee. The suspect, who was wearing a dark jacket and dark sweatpants, fled the scene on foot, running westbound across the Walmart parking lot.

Lanier said the suspect was dropped off at Walmart in a stolen red four-door 2007 Toyota Camry with a sunroof. The vehicle was stolen on the west side of Cincinnati on Friday, Lanier said. Police found the stolen vehicle.

Lanier said the 17-year-old’s name is not being released because he is a juvenile victim, and he has been released from West Chester Hospital. When asked if he could be charged with selling drugs, Lanier said, “It’s still under investigation.”