VIDEO: Dash cam shows pursuit just prior to manhunt for Preble County suspect

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VIDEO: Dash cam shows pursuit just prior to manhunt for Preble County suspect

UPDATE @ 12:38 p.m.:

William McClellan was indicted in Preble County for felonious assault, kidnapping, aggravated robbery, grand theft of a motor vehicle, petty theft and escape.

His wife Angela McClellan has been indicted for obstructing official business.

UPDATE @ 11:48 a.m.:

Pursuit video was released this morning showing the moments before a multi-hour manhunt for a man wanted for two crimes in Preble County.

The pursuit video shows Trotwood police chasing the GMC Envoy William McClellan was said to be driving.

Eventually, police chased the vehicle through a cornfield, where Montgomery County sheriff’s deputies were able to capture him.

INITIAL REPORT:

A 49-year-old Eaton man was arrested Friday after an alleged crime spree that included two assaults, an escape from inside a police cruiser and a multi-county manhunt. 

William F. McClellan, of Deland Drive, is being held in the Preble County Jail on numerous charges including felonious assault, kidnapping, aggravated robbery, theft, theft of a motor vehicle, obstructing official business, escape and resisting arrest. 

He may also be charged with fleeing and eluding in Trotwood where police apprehended him hiding in a cornfield Friday afternoon. 

The alleged crime spree began Tuesday afternoon in Eaton when McClellan allegedly assaulted his 91-year-old relative and tied her up before stealing her van and fleeing the area, police said. 

Suspect escapes from cruiser

McClellan allegedly entered his relative’s home in the 400 block of North Street around 2:20 p.m. and stole her purse before assaulting her and stealing her vehicle, according to Eaton Officer Lucas Schlumpf. 

Schlumpf said the woman was transported to the Eaton Emergency Center for treatment of multiple head injuries. She was in stable condition at last check, he said. 

Police put out an alert for McClellan including fliers on social media. He was said to be driving the stolen 1991 Grey GMC Safari van. Because McClellan has ties to Richmond, Ind. and Huber Heights, police alerted multiple agencies across the area to be on the lookout for him. 

It was Eaton Police who caught up with him Thursday evening at his home and arrested him on a felony warrant related to the attack on his grandmother. 

But McClellan was able to escape from a police cruiser because the partition between the front and back seats wasn’t properly closed. He crawled through the open space and got out the front door of the police cruiser. 

A manhunt began Thursday night that involved the Preble County Sheriff's Department and an Ohio State Highway Patrol airplane. There was an indication that McClellan might know someone on Cemetery Road that he could try and go stay with. 

RAW: Manhunt suspect

At approximately 8:45 a.m. Preble County dispatch received a report of a man at the corner of U.S. 35 and Cemetery Road who had been stabbed. The 63-year-old victim told deputies that he'd been in an altercation with a man matching McClellan's description at his home down the street. 

The suspect knocked on the door, forced his way into the residence and stabbed the victim before stealing his cellphone, three handguns and his car. 

The victim was airlifted to Kettering Medical Center with serious injuries. 

More law enforcement alerts went out for McClellan, this time saying he was considered armed and dangerous. 

A Trotwood Police officer spotted the suspect and vehicle in the parking lot of the Lowe's on Shiloh Springs Road at about 10:15 a.m. The officer attempted to stop the vehicle, but the driver fled west, turning on to Seybold Road, and eventually abandoned the vehicle in a cornfield. 

Officers formed a perimeter and started sweeping a tree line at the edge of the field. 

“We knew we had him boxed in," a Trotwood officer said. 

McClellan was apprehended without incident. He did not have any weapons on him when he was arrested, telling police that they fell out as he ran from the car. Police were searching the field for the weapons Friday afternoon. 

Manhunt ends in Preble County

When asked why police didn't issue any public or media alerts after McClellan escaped police custody Thursday night, Eaton Police Chief Chad DePew said they were dedicating their energy to catching him and officers, "didn't have any proof that he was a threat to the public at the time."

An internal investigation has begun into how he was able to escape from the cruiser. DePew said the opening in the plexiglass partition in police cruisers is used to communicate with prisoners and give them some air. It's not a very big area, he said.

"(Escape) can be done, but not easily,” DePew said.

The officer, who has not been identified, will likely be placed on paid administrative leave. Also arrested Thursday night was Angela McClellan, who DePew identified as William McClellan's wife. She is being held in the Preble County Jail on an obstruction charge. Police said she lied to officers Thursday evening, prior to William McClellan's initial arrest, saying that he wasn't at home. But she gave consent to search the house and that's where officers arrested him.

Trotwood Madison Superintendent Kevin Bell said the district’s buildings went on lockdown for a short period of time during the manhunt Friday. Police contacted the school while they were searching the area, but they soon called back that the threat was over and the lockdown was lifted

Angela J. McClellan, Preble County Jail
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