MORAINE — A man is dead after he was shot by officers after a crash on northbound I-75 in Moraine Wednesday morning, according to Moraine police.
The incident was first reported as a crash involving multiple vehicles, including one that overturned on northbound I-75 near the Dryden Road exit around 5:45 a.m. A second vehicle came to rest in a ditch.
The driver of the car in the ditch called police to report the crash.
“I was in the slow lane, coming up on the Dryden Road exit and someone hit me and I went down to the ditch, took a sign” the driver said in the 911 call. “I can see a car on its top in the middle of the highway.”
The driver said he was driving a silver Chevrolet Malibu and that he took out a sign and hit an embankment wall.
“It was a very, very, very bad crash,” the driver said.
Moraine officers arrived on scene of the accident at 5:51 a.m.
Police Chief Craig Richardson said the officers checked on the man in the car on its top once, but when paramedics arrived, they went back to his car and he was pointing a gun at them. Police later said it was a .44 caliber handgun.
Richardson said the officers checked with troopers on scene to see if there was a less-lethal option available, but determined there was not on immediately available.
Officers spent five minutes trying to deescalate the situation, gave 41 commands to the man to drop the weapon and offered at least three times to get the man help. The man did not obey commands from the officers.
Richardson said the officers fired their service weapons after one officer heard the man appearing to pull the hammer back on the weapon. The two officers fired nine shots, striking the man at 6:07 a.m.
Moraine police identified the man as Elijah Isham, 27. He was taken to an area hospital where he later died. His cause and manner of death are under investigation.
Isham’s license and plates on his vehicle were registered in Oregon. Police said he was arrested in Colorado in April for assault and resisting arrest. He also had a protection order in effect against him our of Colorado.
Richardson said the two officers involved were Sgt. Kenneth Llyod and Officer Jerome Klemmensen. Both officers are on paid administrative leave pending an investigation. Neither officer was injured during the incident.
After the shooting, an investigation revealed that the gun in Isham’s possession was not loaded.
A lengthy closure is expected as crews investigate. Two lanes of southbound I-75 were also shut down for a portion of the morning but had reopened by 9 a.m., according to Ohio Department of Transportation cameras. The left lane of northbound I-75 reopened around 11:50 a.m. and all lanes were opened by 12:30 p.m.
Sgt. Andrew Parish said Wednesday morning that a criminal investigation is ongoing and being conducted by the Tactical Crime Suppression Unit Task Force. The crash is under investigation by the Ohio State Highway Patrol. Moraine Police will be conducting an internal investigation.
We are working to learn more and we will update this story as new details become available.
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