YouTube video, WBNS-TV - Screenshot
© 2023 Blaze Media LLC. All rights reserved.
Police pulled over a couple in a Dodge Caravan Wednesday morning after noticing they had been speeding through Ohio without taillights or visible registration. What might otherwise have gone down as a commonplace encounter quickly escalated into a bloody standoff.
Bodycam footage shows an officer from the London Police Department stopping the couple around 1 a.m. in Madison County, then approaching the van on the passenger's side.
"I just came from the ER," the 51-year-old female passenger told the officer, while her compatriot feigned shock about the lack of lights.
The officer indicated that "not a single light back there" was functioning, but reassured the couple they still might be able to get home since their brake lights were still operable — assuming, of course, the 54-year-old driver could provide some form of identification.
Appearing cooperative, the couple told the officer their names were Ronald and Barbara Taylor and that they were in town traveling. The driver ultimately failed to produce a driver's license, Social Security number, or temporary tags for his vehicle.
WBNS-TV reported that the suspects have since been identified as Elaine and Rodney Helman of Dayton.
As the officer walked away to check what LPD Chief Glenn Nicol indicated was false information, the driver revved his engine and veered off.
The couple made their way to a nearby BP gas station, where they bailed out of the van along with their dog and bolted in search of an alternate mode of transportation.
Police, who had given chase, pursued the suspects on foot.
As one officer came up on the suspects, he drew his taser and announced he would employ it should they fail to stand down. The male suspect allegedly drew a handgun, forcing the officer to take over behind a pickup truck.
The LPD indicated in a statement the suspect "pointed a handgun at the officer" after falling during the initial foot chase.
Nicol indicated that while the man did not ultimately shoot the officer, a live round was found at the truck stop.
The suspects managed to steal into an unlocked semi truck with no trailer but with the driver still inside, whom they reportedly took hostage.
In the semi and in the company of the unlucky truck driver, the couple blasted past the additional officers who had responded to the scene, striking a police cruiser in the process.
Taking once more to the road, the couple commenced a 2.5-hour chase.
Nicol indicated the top speeds reached in the pursuit were between 60 and 65 mph, reported the Daily Mail.
"Usually we try not to engage in such a long pursuit," said Nicol. "However with the speeds and the seriousness of crime and with the abduction taking place, we had to maintain contact with that vehicle."
The Ohio State Highway Patrol and Madison County sheriffs joined officers from the LPD in the pursuit, which ended off Interstate 70 near the Dayton International Airport just before 3:30 a.m..
Although the chase had come to an end, the standoff was only just beginning.
According to authorities, the OSHP's special response team arrived later Wednesday morning, while personnel with the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office attempted to negotiate with the suspects.
Around 7:30 a.m., the special response team in tactical gear approached the suspects in the semi "in an attempt to remove the hostage."
As the troopers approached the semi, they were reportedly shot at.
In response, the troopers returned fire, with one trooper allegedly blasting the cab over 20 times with his sidearm. Both suspects were hit in the exchange.
Fortunately, the hostage got out with only minor injuries, and no officers were reported injured in the shooting.
After the decisive firefight, troopers took the suspects into custody, both of whom were transported to the Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton. Both suspects were pronounce dead at the hospital.
Suspect killed, another seriously hurt after troopers fired shots into stolen semi during standoffyoutu.be
Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors, sign up for our newsletters, and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!
Want to leave a tip?
We answer to you. Help keep our content free of advertisers and big tech censorship by leaving a tip today.
Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News.