Local man accused of crashing Jeep near White House waives right to speedy trial

Published: Wednesday, August 21, 2013 @ 3:37 PM
Updated: Wednesday, August 21, 2013 @ 3:37 PM

The Kettering man accused of crashing his Jeep into steel barriers near the White House earlier this year waived his right to a speedy trial Wednesday as both the defense and prosecution asked for more time to review evidence in the case.

Both sides, however, left room for the possibility that Joseph Reel, 32, may enter a plea as soon as Oct. 4, when he is scheduled to return to court.

At a status hearing before District Judge Rudolph “Rudy” Contreras of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Wednesday, Reel’s court-appointed attorney, Tony Miles, said Reel “might be prepared” for a resolution during the next court appearance.

“That would be nice,” Contreras replied.

Reel, clad in an orange jump suit, did not speak during the hearing, which lasted fewer than five minutes.

Secret Service police say that in the early morning of June 9, Reel rigged the accelerator of his 2008 Jeep Patriot to travel as fast as 45 mph without a driver. The Jeep slammed into a light post, a steel bike rack and a barrier near the White House.

Shortly after that, police say, Secret Service officers saw a man – identified later as Reel - jump the fence next to an office building on White House grounds. They say his intention was to spray paint the phrase “don’t tread on me” somewhere on White House grounds.

Police said they later found a wide range of weapons in Reel’s Kettering home — including a Glock 21 .45-caliber pistol, a Taurus .22-caliber firearm, a spiked baseball bat, a sword, spear, two ballistics vests, four hunting knives and a gas mask. They also found a YouTube video of him talking about his plans.

Mom who police said killed her kids tied to second molestation report

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 12:30 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 4:39 PM

            Claudena Helton faces charges related to the shooting deaths of two of her children.

The Dayton mother charged in the shooting deaths of two of her children has been connected to a second report that her young son was molested.

Neither report was determined to have enough evidence for prosecutors to support charges, according to the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office.

Claudena M. Helton, 30, is accused of shooting 8-year-old Khmorra and 6-year-old Kaiden Helton in the head on May 18. Both children died Sunday at Dayton Children’s Hospital.

PREVIOUS: Dayton boy, allegedly killed by mom, claimed he was molested by school janitor

An October 2015 Dayton police report from the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery lists Helton as the complainant.

A search warrant affidavit filed then said a 4-year-old boy reported to his mother that he had been touched sexually in a bathroom at the Boonshoft on Oct. 2, 2015.

The employee, whose name was not reported because no criminal charges had been filed, was placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

RELATED: Affidavit details Boonshoft sex case allegations

“In February 2016 it was determined that there was insufficient evidence to support the filing of any felony charges,” said Greg Flannagan, spokesman with the prosecutor’s office.

According to the affidavit, Dayton police Detective Elizabeth Alley said she spoke with a Dayton Children’s Hospital social worker on Oct. 5 about a 4-year-old boy’s report to his mother that he had been touched sexually in a bathroom at the Boonshoft on Oct. 2.

The social worker told Alley she spoke with the boy at a hospital emergency room.

RELATED: Police investigate child sex allegation at Boonshoft

The boy’s mother told the social worker her son came home from school that day upset and told her the employee gave him a bear hug while in the bathroom, “unzipped his pants, put his hands down [the child’s] pants” and touched his penis.

The boy said that when he exited the bathroom, he told his teacher, who said she would call his mother, according to the affidavit.

Police searched the museum on Oct. 9, seizing several items including a desktop computer and the personnel file of the accused employee, the affidavit said.

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A Trotwood police report said her son claimed to have been the victim of a sexually related offense at his school last winter.

In February, Trotwood police opened an investigation after Kaiden said he was touched inappropriately by a school janitor, and that the janitor at Mother Brunner Catholic School sexually pleasured himself in front of Kaiden.

Legal authorities said this week that the complaint was investigated and charges were refused by prosecutors because of insufficient evidence. A Trotwood police Captain said the department did find out about the Boonshoft allegations as part of their investigation.

This news organization has been unable to contact either of the uncharged employees suspected of the alleged contact with Kaiden Helton because we have not been able to confirm their identities.

Tattooed 'Joker' accused of flashing gun at cars

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 4:35 PM

Lawrence Sullivan, 29, was arrested on one count of carrying a concealed firearm on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.
Miami-Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation Department

A man with facial tattoos in the style of the Joker comic book villain and the green hair to match is accused of pointing a gun at cars Tuesday in southwest Miami-Dade, Florida.

>> Read more trending news

WFOR-TV reported that police were called about a man flashing a gun at cars near SW 104th Street and Hammocks Boulevard.

Police spotted and questioned Lawrence Sullivan, 29, who fit the description of the popular Batman nemesis. A police officer said he saw Sullivan walk from an apartment complex.

During a pat-down, the officer said he found a Smith & Wesson .380-caliber gun in Sullivan's pocket. He was arrested and charged with carrying a concealed weapon, WFOR-TV reported.

Sullivan had "Joker" tatted on his forehead and "Ha Ha Ha" scrawled under his eye.

Sullivan appeared in court Wednesday and a judge set his bail at $5,000.

5 recent times local officials had brushes with the law

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 3:25 PM

            Five recent cases where law enforcement personnel or public officials have had brushes with the law.

Former Montgomery County Jail corrections officer Michael Rose Jr. was sentenced Tuesday to a year in federal prison for selling cell phones to inmates.

Rose is one of a handful of recent law enforcement personnel or public officials to have brushes with the law. Here are five recent cases and where those cases stand:

Ryan Meno, Kettering police

The former Kettering police detective pleaded guilty to stealing prescription pills from a resident’s home and obstructing official business.

In January 2017, Meno was sentenced in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court to community control, 200 hours community service, and 90 days of electronic home detention. He will have to pay court costs and $250 in fees. He permanently surrendered his Ohio peace officer’s certification.

RELATED: Ex-Kettering officer ‘forever disqualified’ from public service

Meno, 37, responded to a 911 call about a possible break-in at an elderly resident’s home.

Meno determined that there was no break-in, but returned for a “follow-up” investigation and stole a bottle of prescription pain medicine. The victim reported the theft to Kettering police and identified Meno.

Joseph Caito III, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office

Caito, who became his union’s treasurer in 2014, pleaded guilty in December to fourth-degree felony grand theft from the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 104. The union was left with 47 cents in its account.

In April 2017, the 34-year-old Caito was sentenced in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court to 60 days in the Montgomery County Jail for stealing $92,000 from his union.

RELATED: Ex-deputy took thousands, left union with cents

The agreed restitution amount was $92,148.21 — which Caito paid by liquidating his pension — but union leaders said the actual loss was closer to $114,000. In his client’s sentencing memo, defense attorney Frank Malocu said his wife’s illness and medical issues put stress on the family’s finances.

Judge Dennis Langer also ordered Caito to serve an additional 30 days on electronic monitoring after he gets out of jail June 13 and to serve 200 hours of community service. Caito will be on community control for up to five years and must permanently surrender his Ohio peace officer certification.

David Bruns, Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office

The former prosecutor’s office employee stole nearly $90,000 from the county, lied about his involvement and only fully confessed when investigators looked deeper, according to prosecutors. Bruns worked in the delinquent tax assessment unit and legally made about $36,000 per year.

In February 2017, Bruns, 48, was sentenced in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court to 36 months, with 32 months suspended, giving him a stint of 120 days in local jail. He also had to pay $39,830 from his retirement account along with the other money he already paid back.

RELATED: Ex-county worker only came clean when ‘fraud became known’

Prosecutors wrote that Bruns first admitted to some theft Aug. 17, 2016, and that he used other methods to steal money. As investigators searched further, Bruns then admitted and cooperated with investigators and said the theft amount was closer to $90,000 than the original $40,116. Bruns was fired Aug. 22, 2016.

Visiting Judge Linton D. Lewis did not grant a motion for early release, but did let Bruns out for a day to see his daughter graduate from high school.

Michael Rose Jr., Montgomery County Jail

The former Montgomery County Jail corrections officer accepted $5,000 to give an inmate a cell phone to continue to operate a heroin trafficking business, according to federal prosecutors. A law enforcement sting led to Rose agreeing to accept another $1,500 to get a cell phone for another inmate.

On May 23, 2017, Rose was sentenced to a year in federal prison for attempted extortion under color of official right. “I think a message needs to be sent to those who serve as corrections and law enforcement officers that this breach of trust cannot be tolerated,” said U.S. District Court Judge Walter Rice. “The crime is incredibly serious.”

RELATED: Getting cell phones to inmates ‘incredibly serious’ crime

Rice ordered Rose, 29, to do 100 hours of community service and get a mental health assessment, cognitive behavior therapy and submit to various probation conditions.

Rose was allowed to not report to the Bureau of Prisons until Oct. 15 so he could continue to work and so his family could be in a better position before he is incarcerated.

Douglas Gearhart, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office

A former Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office deputy who allegedly knocked out three of his wife’s teeth was indicted in March by a Warren County grand jury. Gearhart, 43, was indicted for second-degree felony assault and misdemeanor domestic violence and drunk-driving charges, according to the Warren County prosecutor’s website.

A police incident report said surveillance footage from inside Gearhart’s Franklin Twp. home showed him grabbing his wife, dragging her by the hair through the kitchen and slamming her head onto the edge of the kitchen island on Feb. 14.

RELATED: Deputy facing violence charges leaves job

His wife has filed for divorce, he’s not allowed to go to his former home and a judge ordered the couple to stay away from each other, according to court documents.

Gearhart, who resigned March 20, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in early June in Warren County Common Pleas Court.

WATCH: Florida man goes airborne after being shot with Taser

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 4:24 PM

A video shows Carlos Sierra running away from police in Miami-Dade County. (Miami-Dade Corrections)
Miami-Dade Corrections

A Florida man’s unceremonious meeting with the ground after being shot with a stun gun was caught on camera.  

Carlos Sierra, a 26-year-old homeless man, was on the run from Surfside police in Miami-Dade County after authorities said he stole a bicycle from a condominium's parking garage, WFOR reported.

>> Read more trending news

When officers arrived to find Sierra with the bike in his hands, he dropped to the ground and allowed the officers to handcuff him and get him back on his feet.  

Sierra tried to run away, while still in handcuffs, before being stopped by a jolt from a stun gun, WFOR reported. The shock sent the man flailing into the air, which led to a forceful, and likely painful, landing in the middle of the road.   

Sierra, who is sporting bloody facial wounds in his mugshot, was charged with burglary, resisting arrest and criminal mischief.