Several police officers and a dispatcher were given a special recognition last week for their exemplary response to an attempted murder-suicide in September.
They were commended for stopping a father, who is accused of trying to burn his house down with his children inside.
News Center 7's Sean Cudahy was in Centerville with what the officers did to save lives.
Police look back on the incident as a team effort, which started with the dispatcher. All five members of the department are now being recognized with commendation for their exemplary response.
“Everything we do is a team effort,” said John Davis of the Centerville Police Department. “They did an excellent job de-escalating the situation.”
Police say it started with a call to the dispatch center from the children’s out-of-town mother who was concerned.
“Our dispatcher did a fantastic job keeping the two of them calm, getting information that we needed in order to relay it to the officers who responded to the house,” said Davis.
Court records show Ray Eades, 30, lit something inside the house on Bradstreet Road on fire. He also made threats to drug the children, disable smoke detectors, barricade the house, and kill himself and his children.
“He had planned and was determined to carry this out, and I think the officers’ presence and their ability to talk to him and get him and talked him out of the house along with the kids,” said Davis.
The children went to the hospital for treatment, and Eades is now facing several charges.
Davis said the fact everyone survived is proof this recognition is well deserved.
“I have no doubt in my mind, from the start of the call with the dispatcher, to the officers’ actions, we averted a huge tragedy that day,” he said.
Eades has appeared in court on charges of attempted murder, aggravated arson and child endangerment since the incident happened. He entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity.