In a video contributed to WHIO by Jonathan Poston, a Riverside police officer armed with a Taser attempts to remove a man that had jumped into the Riverside police cruiser.
The man would steal the cruiser, and it would be involved in a fatal crash, killing two children and injuring several others, less than 10 minutes later.
Jonathan Poston, who recorded video of the suspect stealing the Riverside police cruiser on Airway Drive in Riverside, said he pulled over and called 9-1-1 when he saw a man running back and forth in the street. Poston said the pickup truck had slammed into a tree and he also saw other wrecked vehicles.
When Riverside police showed up, Poston said, the officer got out of the SUV walked to the rear of the cruiser. When he did that, the man ran from the back of the cruiser and jumped into the passenger’s side and locked the doors.
>> PHOTOS: From the scene near Dayton library
Poston said the officer unlocked the doors and used his Taser on the man when he refused to get out of the SUV. He fought with the officer after being hit with the Taser barbs, put the SUV cruiser in reverse and sped away. Another Riverside cruiser tried to stop the stolen SUV, but could not. The thief turned the corner, put the SUV in drive and headed west toward Dayton.
No one was injured in the Airway Road part of the incident, Riverside police said.
“I thought something was wrong with [the man], because he was pacing back and forth across Airway -- in traffic,” Poston said. “He was definitely on something.”
Poston said “I’ve never seen anybody get Tased and not fall down immediately, let alone fight back with a police officer and take his vehicle.”
A “signal 99” -- officer in need of assistance -- was called during the SUV theft on Airway Road.
The suspect in the stolen SUV would later crash into two vehicles near the Dayton Metro Library on East Third Street, killing two children and sending 12 people, including the suspect, to the hospital.