Police: Man assaulted former girlfriend before killing himself in Sidney standoff

School kids are not being allowed to walk home

UPDATE @ 10:29 p.m.: The suspect in the standoff in Sidney on Wednesday afternoon used flex ties to restrain and assault his former girlfriend before she negotiated her release and told police he was in her house and had an assault rifle, Sidney police said in an update to the investigation.

That suspect, 48-year-old Wendell Johnson of Richmond, Ind., died in the home of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Police Chief William Balling said.

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The 29-year-old victim told police she returned home for lunch and found Johnson hiding. She said he grabbed her and used a Taser on her before restraining her with the flex ties and physically assaulting her. After about an hour, she told police, she convinced Johnson to let her go.

Once she was able to get away, she called 9-1-1. Officers from several jurisdictions were dispatched to the residence.

A robot from the Allen County Bomb Squad found Johnson, who was deceased. Police found the weapon, an AR-15 type rifle, extra AR-15 magazines, more flex ties and knives.

Investigators also found a Toyota Camry belonging to Johnson parked a few blocks away on Cherry Street. Police said they believe he parked there to conceal his presence.

Sidney police officials are asking anyone with information about the incident to call the department, 937-498-2351 or CrimeStoppers at 937-492-8477.

Sidney standoff photos video

UPDATE @ 8:25 p.m.: 

A man, believed to be in his 40s, took his own life while he was barricaded in a home on Fair Road in Sidney as the result of an apparent domestic incident, Police Chief William Balling said.

The man was found deceased in the home by a robot the Allen County Bomb Squad sent in during a standoff that lasted just more than four hours.

The standoff developed when police were called about a traumatic incident involving a man and woman, Chief Balling said. The woman came to the police department earlier in the afternoon to warn police about a man in the house [on Fair Road] she believed was barricaded inside and armed with an assault rifle.

A Sidney police officer and neighbors heard what sounded like gunfire at the beginning of the incident to which police were dispatched about 1:30 p.m. But police did not enter the home right away.

"We believe that is when the self-induced injury did take place," Chief Balling said. "Unfortunately, in these type of situations we cannot assume that because we don't want to send our officers into a critical situation and either induce that subject to hurt himself or have an officer hurt. So, that's why we took it so slow."

The Piqua SWAT team was one of several law enforcement agencies called to the standoff on Fair Road in Sidney on Wednesday, Sidney Police Chief William Balling said. (Marshall Gorby/Staff)
The Piqua SWAT team was one of several law enforcement agencies called to the standoff on Fair Road in Sidney on Wednesday, Sidney Police Chief William Balling said. (Marshall Gorby/Staff)

Fair Road is a heavily traveled street and many children at schools nearby walk home. Police cut traffic to Fair Road, south of Campbell Road. Campbell Road and Highland Avenue also were blocked.

The city middle and high schools were placed on lock down. Children who rode school buses or got rides home with parents or guardians were allowed to leave as they normally would, city school district officials said.

Sidney firefighters, state troopers, Piqua police, Shelby County Sheriff's deputies and the Allen County Bomb Squad assisted in the investigation.

Balling said the man is not a Sidney or Shelby County resident, so police are working to make contact with his next of kin. The relationship between the man and the woman has not been made clear.

Balling said the investigation is continuing.

We will update this story as we learn more.

If you have a news tip about this incident or any other, call our 24-hour line at 937-259-2237 or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.