Family of mother, child killed in Dayton home file wrongful death lawsuit

The family of Aisha Nelson and her 6-year-old daughter who were killed in their Dayton home in June filed a wrongful death suit against several parties including the City of Dayton and the Dayton Police Department, according to a release.

The complaint filed Monday afternoon states Alisha Nelson called Dayton police multiple times on June 22 to inform the police that her boyfriend, Waverly Dante Hawes had threatened her life.

It continues to state that after her first call to Dayton police Nelson, along with her daughter, went to a separate location to wait for the police out of fear of angering Hawes but police never arrived.

Body camera footage obtained through a public records request shows two officers responding to Nelson’s home in the early morning hours of June 23 to reports of a possible domestic violence situation soon before Nelson and her daughter were found dead.

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It shows officers speaking with Nelson who had reached out to dispatchers three times earlier that night.

In the video, officers speak to Hawes in the basement of the home, they advise him to stay away from Nelson.

At some point after the male officer and Hawes speak, Nelson tells the officers Hawes is “walking around the house, waving the gun that I purchased. He didn’t start making any threats last night until he had the gun.... all this in front of my daughter, that’s the issue that I have.”

The officers step away for a moment to try to decide what to do, but struggle with the fact they don’t believe there are explicit threats and Nelson doesn’t want to leave the residence, apparently even if Hawes stays.

One of the officers can be heard saying, “It would be a stretch. We could articulate [it] as domestic threats and take him to jail.”

Nelson asks the officers if they can make Hawes leave for the night. But she said she doesn’t want him to go into the system [be arrested and detained in jail].

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They tell her they can’t make him leave and leave the scene.

An hour or two later Nelson and her 6-year-old daughter were found dead in the basement, they had been shot.

Later that day Hawes was found dead in Falkville, Alabama, suffering from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The complaint alleges reckless, wanton and egregious conduct and wrongful death citing that these deaths were entirely preventable had “the investigating officers with the Dayton Police Department made any reasonable effort to protect Nelson and her daughter,” according to a release.

It also states that the officer never filed a report which violates the department’s general orders on domestic violence calls.

Aisha Nelson’s mother Keeley Nelson and attorneys at Wright & Schulte representing the family said they plan to hold a press conference on the lawsuit Tuesday morning.

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