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.


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.

Thief unwittingly leaves wallet, photo ID at crime scene

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 11:00 PM

A thief unwittingly turned himself in after leaving his wallet behind after leaving a Dayton store.

Police said they were dispatched to Dollar General on 2312 N. Main St. in Dayton around 8 a.m. Saturday, and found a wallet left behind by one of the suspects. Police found several items with the suspect’s name on them, including a photo ID. 

The second suspect was identified as a heavyset man between 30 and 40, wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt. The suspect ran away on foot south through the nearby alley, appearing to have several items hidden under his sweatshirt. 

According to reports, police found hangers with five children’s outfits near the wallet, as well as three packs of Ivory soap and a Halloween mask.

Dayton K-9 unit searching for armed robbery suspect

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 9:32 AM
Updated: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 10:31 AM

UPDATE @ 10:32 a.m.

Police continue to search for the suspect in a reported armed robbery at a Dayton Dollar General Saturday morning.

Dispatchers said police have yet to find a person matching the description of the suspect.


Dayton police are searching for a man who reportedly robbed a South Gettysburg business at gunpoint Saturday morning, according to dispatchers. 

Crews were dispatched to the Dollar General at 888 South Gettysburg Avenue around 9:12 on a reported armed robbery. 

Initial reports indicate a man in a black ball cap robbed the store and left on foot in an unknown direction. 

Dispatchers reported police are using a K-9 unit to search for the suspect in the area. 

We will continue to follow updates in this developing story.

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Florida man arrested after bombs, ammo, school maps found in home

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 9:55 PM

Bombs, Ammo, School Maps Found In Florida Home, Man Arrested

A Florida man was arrested after homemade bombs, an AK-47 assault rifle, ammunition and school maps were discovered inside his bedroom. 

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said in a news conference Thursday that deputies were set to search the home Randall Drake, 24, of Dunedin, Florida, shared with his parents for a child pornography investigation.

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During a search of Drake’s bedroom on Wednesday, authorities said detectives found explosives and numerous firearms in a locked closet, The Associated Press reported.

The weapons included the following:

  • An AK-47 rifle with a 60-round clip
  • A .308-caliber rifle
  • A .50-caliber pistol
  • A 12-gauge shotgun
  • Numerous other handguns
  • About 15 knives
  • A baseball bat with protruding nails in it 
  • A crossbow
  • Brass knuckles
  • A container of gunpowder
  • More than 2,300 rounds of ammunition
  • Three incendiary devices
  • A homemade silencer
  • Tactical vests

Detectives also said they found a map and aerial images of an elementary and middle school in Tampa, Florida, as well as the Hillsborough County Water Treatment Plant. According to deputies, journals and a handwritten letter that talked about revenge were also discovered.

In this undated photo released by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, a weapons cache is shown in the home of Randall Drake.(Pinellas County Sheriff's Office via AP/AP)

Gualtieri said his office is trying to figure out why Drake had the incendiary devices and what he was going to do with them.

Drake has since posted $20,000 bond. He faces two charges of unlawfully making, possessing or attempting to make a destructive device.

Dayton thief drops T-bone steaks down his shorts

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 4:37 AM

Police are searching for a man who dropped three T-bone steaks down his shorts.

Officers were dispatched at 8:40 p.m. Friday to Groceryland, 1451 Troy St. in Dayton to a report of a theft.

The store manager told police he was walking down the meat aisle when he became suspicious by the behavior of a man talking to another customer. The manager later saw the man run out the front entrance. He ran after him, but lost sight of him after he went behind the store, according to a Dayton police report.

The manager showed police surveillance video footage, which shows the thief grab three T-bone steaks, which each cost between $10 and $20. Then, in a different aisle, the suspect places the steaks down his shorts, the report stated.

No arrests have been made.