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Published: Tuesday, March 06, 2018 @ 10:33 AM
The Dayton man accused of trying to fly to Syria to join ISIS has asked the government to provide any of his intercepted communications captured under authority of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), according to court records.
Federal public defender Thomas Anderson filed a motion in Dayton’s U.S. District Court asking prosecutors to provide or at least confirm the existence of any recordings of Laith Waleed Alebbini during an already scheduled in-chambers March 15 hearing.
Alebbini, 27, was indicted on one count of attempting to provide material support to a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) after he tried in April 2017 to board a flight to Jordan from the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.
“The flight was purchased with funds provided by the FBI and given to Laith by a Confidential Informant working for the FBI,” Anderson wrote in his motion. “To date there has been no indication that Laith had any communication, whatsoever, with anyone from ISIS or purporting to be in any way affiliated with ISIS.
“The government’s theory is not that Laith was plotting any type of terrorist attack either in America or abroad, but rather that he intended to ultimately make his way to join ISIS in Syria for the sole purpose of killing (Syrian President) Bashar al-Assad.”
Prosecutors have invoked the Classified Information Procedures Act (CIPA) in the Alebbini case to “protect classified information from disclosure.”
First Assistant U.S. Attorney Vipal Patel filed an “ex parte, in camera, and under seal motion” on March 1 — the same day as Anderson’s filing. A U.S. Attorney’s Office spokeswoman said they are unable to comment about the defense motion but plan to file a response in court next week.
In January, U.S. District Court Judge Walter Rice overruled a defense motion to revoke Alebbini’s detention order. Rice noted in that ruling that he’s concerned that Alebbini doesn’t have meaningful access to the “voluminous discovery,” much of which is on compact discs which require a computer to access them.
The charge Alebbini faces has a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. In February, Alebbini was moved and booked into the Shelby County Jail.
»RELATED: Laith Alebbini background information
Anderson wrote that, at a minimum, the government should confirm or deny the existence of intercepted communications. Anderson wants to be included in any in-camera or in-chambers sessions involving classified material.
“It is hard to imagine anything more essential to a defense of an attempt crime than the actual recorded words of the defendant intercepted by the government,” the motion said.
“As is true with any attempt charge, the crime has not been completed, and here the government bears the burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Laith specifically intended to place himself under the direction and control of ISIS before he took a substantial step towards committing the alleged crime,” the motion continued.
Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 11:15 AM
Updated: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 12:08 PM
URBANA — UPDATE @ 12:08 p.m.:
An Amber Alert has been canceled after two Urbana boys were found safe.
The suspect and vehicle still have not been found.
An Amber Alert is active for two boys reported abducted from Urbana.
They were reported missing at 7 a.m. from Maplewood Circle after their grandparents awoke to find them gone, according to a release from the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.
The first boy is Justin Wallace Jr., 7, a biracial boy with black hair who stands 4 feet 5 inches and weighs 72 pounds. There was no further descriptive information available.
The second boy is Aaron Rollins, 9, a white boy with brown hair and hazel eyes who stands 4 feet, 11 inches and weighs 72 pounds. He was last seen wearing a maroon and white T-shirt and camo high-top tennis shoes.
The suspect, Jamie Rollins, 39, is the non-custodial mother. She is believed to be driving a taupe Kia Optima with Ohio plates 347YSL. She is described as a white woman with red hair and blue eyes who stands 5 feet 3 inches and weighs 223 pounds.
Anyone with information on their whereabouts or who spots them is urged to call 911.
For more information visit the Ohio Amber Alert website.
Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 5:06 PM
FAIRFIELD — It wasn’t the first time officers had been called to a Fairfield apartment where police said Friday they confronted and killed a man as he stabbed a woman, records show.
And the same home in the 1500 block of Gelhot Drive was the site of an earlier complaint by the woman claiming the man — who is described in police records as her boyfriend — had tried to poison her.
That’s according to new information released to this media outlet Saturday by Fairfield Police in the aftermath of one of their officers shooting to death the male suspect, who has now been identified along with the female victim, who died from her stab wounds.
The Butler County Coroner’s office released a statement saying the stabbing victim was 37-year-old Michelle R. Henry. Logan A. Willliamson, 37, died at the scene after being shot by Fairfield Police as he was stabbing Henry. Henry later died at Mercy Hospital-Fairfield.
The first Fairfield officer on the scene, identified as Officer Bryan Carnes, a three-year veteran, allegedly found Williamson stabbing Henry inside the townhouse.
In an attempt to stop the stabbing, Carnes fired two shots, striking Williamson. He was pronounced dead at the scene, said Fairfield Police Chief Steve Maynard.
Police records show officers had previously been called to respond to the couple’s address in September 2017 on a domestic violence report where Williamson was arrested for attacking Henry.
Henry told officers “her boyfriend tried to poison her by placing (sic) dissolvable sleeping pills in her mouth while she was sleeping.”
Police records also showed that in recent years Williamson had been arrested for fleeing police after speeding, carrying alcohol and a weapon in a car on another occasion.
And the woman’s family members had asked police to stop at the address last year to check on Henry, saying they had not heard from her for an extended time.
Dispatchers received the 911 call for the incident at 5:49 a.m. Friday at a townhouse located in a quiet neighborhood off Pleasant Avenue. A female caller blurted out the address then continues to scream for help during the three-minute, 20-second call.
“He’s stabbing me!” the woman screams once.
The dispatcher continues to ask the woman to repeat the address.
“Please yell your address to me so I can send help,” the dispatcher says. “Shout your address, your apartment number.”
One of the officers says: “I heard someone yell ‘help!’”
When Officer Bryan Carnes and Sgt. Aaron Meyer got to the residence, they forced entry and ran up the steps, Maynard said.
“(They) made their way to an upstairs bathroom where they encountered a male and a female. The male was stabbing the female. Officer Bryan Carnes, who was the first officer to make it to the bathroom, fired several rounds from his pistol striking the male and stopping the initial threat,” Maynard said during a press conference four hours after the incident.
Henry was transported to Mercy Fairfield Hospital where she died, according to police. Williamson died at the scene.
The Bureau of Criminal Investigation has taken over the investigation, Maynard said. As is standard procedure, the two officers are on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of that investigation.
The chief said there is body camera footage of the incident and once BCI and the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office “deems appropriate, we will release it.”
Carnes is a three-year veteran of the force. He previously worked for Englewood Police Department, north of Dayton, according to the chief. He received a good review in October, with the preparer stating, “Officer Carnes is a very well rounded officer who has taken on additional responsibilities within the organization. He is an asset to the department.”
Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said the incident will be presented to a grand jury of review when the investigation is completed. It is Gmoser’s policy that all officer involved shootings are presented to a grand jury.
Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 7:17 PM
Updated: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 11:40 PM
HARRISON TWP. — An armed suspect demanded drugs and threatened employees Friday night during a robbery at a Rite Aid pharmacy.
The robbery was reported around 7 p.m. at the business, 4328 N. Main St. in Harrison Twp.
“Somebody walked in with a note and asked for prescription drugs and said that he was going to kills us in that note if we didn’t give him what we have,” according to a 911 caller who identified himself as a pharmacy manager.
The suspect was described as a young man who stands 5 feet 7 or five feet 8 inches who was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and black pants.
Montgomery County Sheriff’s deputies, including a K-9 unit, were dispatched to the robbery. However, deputies on scene did not comment on the investigation.
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Published: Thursday, June 21, 2018 @ 7:08 PM
Updated: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 10:45 PM
CONCORD TWP., Miami County — UPDATE @ 10:45 p.m. (June 22): A retired Troy firefighter accused of rape posted bond and was released from the Miami County Jail.
Jeffrey Paul Covault’s bond was $200,000 cash for the single rape count, which was set during his arraignment this morning.
Covault’s co-defendant Thomas Perkins Jr., 54 — also charged with rape — and his son, 24-year-old Aaron Jacob Covault, charged on an unrelated weapons violation, remain in jail.
UPDATE @ 10:20 a.m. (June 22): A retired Troy firefighter and a co-defendant remain in jail on a rape charge, while the son of the former firefighter also remains in jail on a weapons charge.
Jeffrey Paul Covault, 48, had his bond set at $200,000 cash on a single count of rape. His plea of not guilty was taken this morning.
Thomas Perkins Jr., 54, identified as a co-defendant in the rape case, had his bond set at $200,000 as well. According to authorities, Perkins worked for Covault’s lawn care business.
Aaron Jacob Covault, 24, had his bond set at $22,000 cash during his court appearance via video in Miami County Municipal Court.
He is detained in the Miami County Jail on charges of weapon possession as a felon (a felony) and weapons possession while intoxicated (a misdemeanor).
The elder Covault and Perkins are accused of engaging in sexual conduct with an intoxicated 21-year-old woman on March 2, in the parking lot of The Vault, on North County Road 25A, county Prosecutor Tony Kendell said. According to the indictment, the victim was impaired because of a mental or physical condition and the alleged perpetrators had cause of know of that impairment.
Common Pleas Judge Christopher Gee issued a “no contact order” for the elder Covault and Perkins, meaning they are to have no contact with the alleged victim or with each other.
The elder Covault worked as a Troy firefighter/paramedic from May 1996 until he retired April 1, according to city personnel records.
A criminal records check shows he has been convicted for operating a vehicle under the influence in 2011 and for disorderly conduct in 2012.
The father and son were arrested hours apart Thursday from the same home, a residence in the 700 block of County Road 25A, north of Troy.
Aaron Jacob Covault, was arrested at the same address hours after his father was taken into custody. Police said the younger Covault was upset over the arrest of his father and discharged a gun.
There were no reports of injuries.