Danville officer shot and killed, suspect ID’d

Published: Monday, January 18, 2016 @ 12:55 AM
Updated: Monday, January 18, 2016 @ 6:30 AM


            Authorities are investigating after a Danville officer was shot and killed in the small town located in Knox County. VIDEO: provided by WBNS-TV.

UPDATE @ 6:30 a.m.

Herschel Jones III has been identified as the alleged suspect in the shooting death of Danville police officer Thomas Cottrell, according to a release from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office.

Cottrell was found dead at 11:47 p.m. Sunday behind the Danville Municipal Building — less than 30 minutes after the dispatch center received a call from a female in Danville stating that the police officers in Danville were in danger.

She said that her ex-boyfriend, Herschel Ray Jones, had left with weapons and was looking to kill an officer, the release said. Dispatch personnel attempted to make contact with the Danville officer, but were unsuccessful. Deputies from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office searched the village.

When Cottrell was found, his weapon and cruiser had been stolen.

Shortly after 1:30 a.m. this morning, Jones III was observed running from a residence on E. Washington Street. After a short foot chase, Jones III was taken into custody by officers in the area of the Danville Park.

A female outside of the residence was interviewed by officers and later released.

Officers from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office and B.C.I. are investigating the incident.

UPDATE @ 5:45 a.m.

Officials in Knox County have identified the Danville police officer killed in the line of duty as Thomas Cottrell.

UPDATE @ 4:10 a.m.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol has confirmed an officer found shot in Danville has died.

The shooting prompted a statewide alert after the officer and police cruiser went missing around midnight in the village located in Knox County.

The officer, who has not yet been identified, was found shot outside the Danville Municipal Building.

The shooting suspect is also reported in custody after a two-hour search.

UPDATE @ 3:25 a.m.

While our newsroom has not received an official update on the condition of the shot officer, Franklin County Sheriff Chief Deputy Jim Gilbert said on Twitter the officer has died.

Gilbert tweeted “Prayers for Ohio’s first fallen officer for 2016 a Danville PD Officer was shot/killed this evening in Knox County.”

Danville is a village in Knox County with a population just over 1,000 according to the 2010 census.

UPDATE @ 2:15 a.m.

The suspect accused in the shooting of a missing Danville police officer is in custody.

Our news partner WBNS-TV in Columbus reports the suspect was arrested in Danville shortly before 2 a.m. after a two-hour long search.

Officials said the officer was found shot outside the Danville Municipal Building and the Bureau of Criminal Investigation heading to the scene to investigate.

We’ll continue to update this page as new information becomes available.

FIRST REPORT

A statewide alert has been issued by the Ohio State Highway Patrol for a stolen police cruiser from Knox County and a missing Danville police officer that may be injured.

Our news partner WBNS-TV in Columbus reports troopers said the missing officer was on duty at the time and his hat was found in the area with blood on it.

No information has been released about on how badly injured the officer may be, where he is, or if he’s with the missing cruiser. Information on a potential suspect was also not released.

Danville is located in Knox County and is over an hour drive northeast of Columbus.

We’re monitoring this breaking story and will update this page when new information is available.

Sidney McDonald’s robbery suspect arrested

Published: Friday, May 26, 2017 @ 3:33 AM

Lance Shewalter

 SIDNEY — A man suspected of robbing the McDonald’s on Michigan Street was taken into custody by police on Thursday. 

Lance C. Shewalter, 32, is being held at the Shelby County Jail.

Sidney police were dispatched to the 2200 block of Michigan Street around 10:43 p.m. Thursday.

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Shortly after, officers located Shewalter in the an area near where police say witnesses lost sight of him. 

Several items used in the robbery were located in the area, according to police. 

Shewalter has been charged with robbery and is being held at the Shelby County Jail. 

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1-month-old boy dies after parents didn't check on him for at least 6 hours, police say

Published: Thursday, May 25, 2017 @ 10:43 PM

Cameron Dowden, 21, (pictured) and Superiah Campbell, 19, were arrested in Florida Thursday after investigators claimed their child died because they allegedly failed to check on him for at least six hours.
WFTV.com

The parents of a 1-month-old Cocoa, Florida, boy were arrested Thursday after investigators claimed their child died because they allegedly failed to check on him for at least six hours.

Superiah Campbell, 19, and Cameron Dowden, 21, were each charged with a count of manslaughter of a child for the May 10th death of their son.

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Cocoa police officers were called to the couple’s apartment unit at about 12:15 p.m. on May 10.

The 911 caller told officials the child had stopped breathing and was cold to the touch, investigators said.

Emergency personnel tried to resuscitate the child when they arrived at the apartment, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

After investigating the child’s death, police said they found that evidence showed the parents had not checked on the child for at least six hours, leading to the discovery of the boy in an unresponsive state.

“By failing to check on the child for over six hours, the defendants consciously did an act, or followed a course of conduct that they must have known, or reasonably should have known, was likely to cause death or great bodily harm,” Cocoa Police Department Detective Debra Titkanich wrote in an affidavit. “Both parents showed a reckless disregard for human life.”

Investigators had not determined an official cause of death but said it appeared the child suffocated. 

2-car crash forces vehicle into Dayton house; 2nd driver flees

Published: Thursday, May 25, 2017 @ 7:23 PM

A two-car crash this evening forced one car into a house at the corner of Stewart Street and Clement Avenue in Dayton.

A passenger in the car was taken to Miami Valley Hospital with injuries described as minor, according to police.

The second car fled the scene but was found a few blocks away. However, its driver ran from the car before police arrived.

It is not clear whether that driver has been caught and we’re working to learn more information about what led to the crash.

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9th inmate sues Montgomery County Jail, now-fired officer

Published: Thursday, May 25, 2017 @ 1:12 PM
Updated: Thursday, May 25, 2017 @ 6:05 PM

A ninth lawsuit has been filed by a former inmate alleging mistreatment by Montgomery County Jail personnel, this one involving a now-fired corrections officer that the sheriff’s office tried to prosecute.

Former inmate Daryl Wallace, 44, filed a lawsuit this week against former corrections officer Jerrid Campbell, Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer and the county’s board of commissioners in Dayton’s U.S. District Court.

Wallace’s attorneys alleged that Campbell “viciously beat” Wallace with impunity. The Sept. 28, 2015, altercation was captured on surveillance video.

EARLIER: Officer who sheriff tried to charge for jail assault claims unfairness

The civil rights, excessive force lawsuit claimed that Wallace complained to Campbell that his cell’s hot water wasn’t working and Campbell refused to call maintenance.

Wallace called Campbell a name, the lawsuit said, and walked away before Campbell ordered him to stop and shoved Wallace to the ground.

“Campbell then pummeled Mr. Wallace with punch after punch while holding handcuffs and using them like brass knuckles,” Wallace’s attorney’s wrote. “(Wallace) was bleeding from his scalp.”

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Wallace claims he regularly experiences migraine headaches so bad “it feels like his forehead swells, the pain paralyzes him, and he vomits.” The suit also said Wallace’s vision has worsened since the incident.

Plummer said Thursday that Campbell was fired Tuesday for “violations of numerous policies.”

According to sheriff’s office documents, those violations included: using racist slurs against Plummer and other command staff members; failing to allow an inmate access to a dentist; two violations of use of force; an inappropriate Facebook post about a co-worker, making inaccurate and untruthful statements to the Dayton Daily News; making similar statements to the Dayton Weekly News. Campbell was suspended a total of 23 days for those alleged violations.

RELATED: Oversight committee picked to monitor Montgomery County Jail

Campbell wouldn’t comment Thursday about the lawsuit but said he was fired “for exposing the segregation in the jail and for writing a complaint against Phil Plummer plus the rest of his racist command staff for creating a racist atmosphere towards black officer (sic) and threatening (other officers) for speaking out against racism.”

Campbell’s complaints about comments by former Maj. Scott Landis led to Landis’ demotion in October. In November, Campbell was quoted in a story about allegations that female inmates are racially segregated at the jail and an analysis by this newspaper that found black female inmates were disproportionately placed in older, smaller cells.

Chief Deputy Rob Streck said Thursday that Campbell has alleged he was treated unfairly, but “those allegations have been covered numerous times in numerous investigations without any evidence or any type of proof bought forward other than just accusations.”

I-TEAM SPECIAL PROJECT: Justice at the Jailhouse

The sheriff’s office said this week the “expedited” internal review of the segregation allegations they announced in November is still ongoing.

The 156-page internal investigation of the altercation between Campbell and Wallace, obtained by this newspaper, shows the sheriff’s office referred the case to both city and county prosecutors and both declined charges.

“The situation was properly investigated, and the employee was disciplined and held accountable to the fullest extent,” Plummer said, noting that Campbell was suspended without pay for 10 days.

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Wallace’s attorney, Adam Gerhardstein, said the sheriff was right to discipline Campbell, but the department should have done more to prevent the incident in the first place.

“What’s important is looking at what caused excessive force to be used, and there’s enough evidence out there that we believe there’s a pattern and practice within the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office of using excessive force in that jail,” he said.

Eight other former inmates have filed suits alleging mistreatment in the jail. None has reached trial or been settled.

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Wallace’s suit mentions the pepper-spraying of Amber Swink while in a restraint chair by then Sgt. Judith Sealey, injuries to Joseph Guglielmo allegedly caused by jail personnel and the death of Robert Richardson, who died after suffering a medical emergency while in his cell.

The suit seeks compensatory and punitive damages plus attorneys fees and court costs.

“Corrections officers are supposed to keep the people in their custody safe,”Adam Gerhardstein said in a statement. “There is no justification for Officer Campbell’s vicious assault on Mr. Wallace. Montgomery County has a responsibility to put an end to the use of excessive force by the corrections officers in its jail.”

The same day the Wallace lawsuit was filed, Plummer attended the first meeting of a new committee established to review jail practices and policy in light of the slew of lawsuits — which he blames in part on increased public attention.

“Another thing we need to address is the media and the frenzy they create, and they bring more ambulance chasers to sue us,” Plummer said at that meeting. “This is a vicious cycle.”