Police department's Facebook photo of panhandler's money sparks controversy

Published: Wednesday, July 26, 2017 @ 1:40 AM

Police Department's Facebook Photo Of Panhandler's Money Sparks Controversy

For as long as there have been panhandlers, there has been an argument about whether we should give them money. A front-page story in the Washington Post on Sunday chronicled the struggles of a young man who has to drive 30 miles to beg for money to support his ailing mother after he had been run out of his town.

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The Cheyenne Police Department in Wyoming is the latest to join this argument. On Sunday, police shared a picture on Facebook of money collected by a homeless man, writing, “We arrested a transient for public intoxication. ... We want to illustrate that there are better ways to help the transient population than to give them money for panhandling.” The post continued, “Rather than feeding someone’s alcohol addiction, you can donate directly to local charities.”

>> See the post here

Yesterday, July 22, we arrested a transient for public intoxication. This is a person we frequently deal with, but we...

Posted by Cheyenne Police Department on Sunday, July 23, 2017

The post has been shared more than 31,000 times and received at least 5,600 comments. A number of people were angered by the post, including one user who wrote, “I’m sure you guys are going to take every dollar he had, and not give it back to him. The way I see it, the people gave it to him. That’s his money.”

Another man wrote, “I will give my money to whoever I please. ... Because of this post, I’m going, right now, to each exit where they usually hang out and each one is getting $20.”

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There were comments supporting the department, such as, “Am I missing something? How are the Police bad guys all the sudden?? All they did was arrest a guy for public intoxication which is against the law!!”

The department responded on Facebook, saying:

"It is great to see that this topic is important to our community. It should since it is a community issue and not just a problem for the police to solve. This is why CPD launched Operation Change in March. Our officers always offer social services first; if they make an arrest for intoxication, we have addiction counselors contact the person while in jail to offer help. Several have taken us up on the offer and are currently in programs. We will never give up on our mission to help those in need. Get involved to help!"

>> See the post here

The department later posted some clarifications, including that the money was not seized from the panhandler but “inventoried along with his property” and “held for safekeeping until he is released.”

>> Read the post here

We want to clarify several things regarding our recent post about panhandling

Posted by Cheyenne Police Department on Tuesday, July 25, 2017

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Police: 2 suspected metal thieves caught red-handed at Hewitt Soap Factory

Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 11:17 PM

Jacob Schiessler, left, and Scott Schiessler
Jacob Schiessler, left, and Scott Schiessler(MONTGOMERY COUNTY JAIL)

>>PHOTOS: Fire at Hewitt Soap Factory

A Tipp City man told police he was nearly run over this evening after he tried to confront two suspected metal thieves.

The 56-year-old man dialed 911 to report a theft in progress around 5 p.m. at the old Hewitt Soap Factory, 300 Linden Ave.

He said he was on his way home from work when he saw a red pickup truck on the property. He walked up to the truck to get its license plate number when he spotted a man later identified as Jacob Schiessler come out of a vacant building, and saw another man, later identified as Scott Schiessler, load metal into the bed of the pickup, according to a Dayton police report.

How the wind affected firefighters' job at Hewitt Soap factory

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The man said when he confronted the men about the theft, Jacob Schiessler threatened him and he backed away at the urging of the 911 operator.

Then, he said Jacob Schiessler got into the driver’s seat of the pickup, accelerated and tried to run him owner. The victim said he was able to run out of the way to avoid being struck, the report stated.

Police found the pickup at First Street Recycling, 1400 E. First St.

The victim identified Jacob and Scott Schiessler as the men involved in the incident at the Linden Avenue site, the report stated. 

Firefighters continues to douse the hot spots of the old Hewitt Soap Factory fire that erupted early Friday morning.

Both men were booked into the Montgomery County Jail on suspicion of felony breaking and entering, and Jacob Schiessler also faces a felonious assault charge. They are due to be arraigned Friday afternoon in Dayton Municipal Court, online jail records show.

The old Hewitt Soap Factory ceased operation in 2004. It had a massive fire Dec. 22, 2016, that destroyed a building at the facility constructed in 1897. A second large fire erupted Nov. 10, 2017, this time at a three-story building on the site’s northern side.

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‘I’ll bite your nose off and spit it in your face,’ man tells cop during arrest

Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 10:12 PM

Martin Flemings

A 56-year-old man pinched a Dayton officer and threatened to bite him tonight during his arrest, according to a Dayton police report.

Officers on patrol reported finding Martin Eugene Flemings around 7:20 p.m. inside a garage that was boarded up by the city at 22 W. Hudson Ave.

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According to the report, Flemings, who was possibly intoxicated, became belligerent after he found out his lighter shaped like a handgun would be placed in the property room. He began yelling and told an officer: “I’ll bite your nose off and spit it in your face,” the report stated.

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Flemings then reached back and pinched the officer in the right thigh, according to the report.

Flemings was booked into the Montgomery County Jail on suspicion of menacing, resisting arrest and illegal entry into a nuisance premises. He also had a warrant for failing to appear on a drug possession charge, records show.

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Tipp City: Middle school student made threats against 2 adults, building

Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 5:08 PM

The Tipp City Exempted Village Schools said Thursday that a middle school student faces misdemeanor charges including aggravated menacing and disorderly conduct after he allegedly made written comments threatening intent to harm two adults within the building and to cause building destruction. 

Tipp City police were notified and are investigating the incident. There were no injuries. 

“The Tipp City Police Department does not deem the student to be an immediate threat to students, staff, or the community,” Superintendent Gretta Kumpf said in a written statement.

Kumpf said the district emphasized the police were confident there is no additional threat of harm from the incident. She said the student will remain out of school during the investigation. 

Police said the threats were found in a classroom, turned over to administrators and a suspect identified. The juvenile admitted to writing the threats, police stated.

Police said charges were filed after contact with Miami County prosecutors. The student is charged with two counts of aggravated menacing and one count of disorderly conduct.

The student, a boy, is with parents but that could change, police said Thursday evening.

Parents were notified of the threats via a phone call, Liz Robbins, district community relations director, said.

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John Crawford shooting: Beavercreek wants separate trial from Walmart

Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 10:57 AM
Updated: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 10:57 AM

John Crawford shooting: Beavercreek wants separate trial from Walmart

The wrongful death civil rights lawsuit brought by John Crawford III’s parents against Beavercreek and Walmart has been scheduled for a February 2019 trial date, according to federal court records.

But the case could be split into two trials, if a federal judge grants a motion from the city of Beavercreek to separate the defendants.

RELATED: Deposition: Williams shot Crawford because he ‘was about to’ point a weapon

Dayton’s U.S. District Court Judge Walter Rice scheduled the trial for Feb. 4, 2019 — a day shy of 4½ years after Crawford, 22, of Fairfield, was shot and killed by Beavercreek police officer Sean Williams in Walmart.

Beavercreek police responded after lone 911 caller Ronald Ritchie said he saw a black man carrying a rifle and waving it at people, including children. Police said Crawford, who was on his cell phone, didn’t respond to requests by Williams and Sgt. David Darkow to drop the item — a realistic-looking BB/pellet rifle he picked up from an open box in the store.

RELATED: Beavercreek officer who shot John Crawford III back on ‘full duty’

Crawford’s attorneys said Crawford had less than a second to hear and respond to anything officers said. Williams was cleared by a Greene County special grand jury in September 2014, and a federal investigation ended in 2017 without criminal charges.

Beavercreek attorneys filed a motion to split the case. They argued that the Beavercreek defendants are facing civil rights allegations such as excessive force, the police department’s supervision, training and control of its officers in circumstances requiring the use of force.

RELATED: Feds won’t charge Beavercreek officer in Walmart shooting

The Beavercreek attorneys said the Walmart defendants face state law claims involving issues of negligence and premises liability concerning the packaging, storage, shelving and safeguarding of pellet rifles.

“Due to the vastly different sets of facts supporting the claims against these sets of Defendants,” Beavercreek attorneys wrote, “severance of the claims and separate trials are appropriate.”

Rice has not ruled on the motion.

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