Warren County officer-involved shooting investigation closed, no charges to be filed

Use of deadly force ‘was objectively reasonable’

The investigation of a fatal officer-involved shooting in Lebanon June 17 has been closed and the county prosecutor will not present the matter to a Warren County grand jury after concluding that it was “objectively reasonable” for police to use deadly force.

Warren County Prosecutor David P. Fornshell announced Tuesday that his office has concluded its investigation into the officer-involved shooting that resulted in the death of Dione Kellum. The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation conducted the local investigation and presented their conclusions to Fornshell for review and determination if the case should go to a grand jury.

“After careful review of all the facts and evidence, I have concluded that the application of the use of deadly force by the officer from the Lebanon Division of Police and the deputy from the Warren County Sheriff’s Office was objectively reasonable under the circumstances as defined by Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1 (1985) and Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386 (1989).

Therefore, our office will not be presenting this matter to the Warren County grand jury and this investigation will be considered closed,” Fornshell said.

According to the prosecutor’s office, on the evening of June 17, Lebanon police and the Warren County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call reporting that Dione Kellum was threatening a family with a firearm. Responding law enforcement officers encountered Kellum, who held a pistol to his own head while officers attempted repeatedly to de-escalate the situation. In addition to the pistol, Kellum was also armed with a shotgun.

The prosecutor’s office said police body camera footage revealed that during the approximately 25-minute standoff, officers instructed Kellum over 100 times to put down his weapons. At one point during the extended encounter, Kellum fired a single round from his pistol into the ground.

The prosecutor’s office said as officers continued to give orders for Kellum to put down his weapons, Kellum began to raise his shotgun and fired another round. At that time, the Lebanon police officer and the Warren County Sheriff’s Office deputy each fired one round at Kellum. Kellum then fell to the ground, raised his pistol, and fired one round into his own head. Kellum was treated at the scene and then ultimately transported to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, where he remained in critical condition until being pronounced deceased on June 19.

The prosecutor’s office said, the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office conducted the autopsy and determined that Kellum suffered two gunshot wounds to his left thigh, and a single gunshot wound to his head. The coroner’s office concluded that Kellum’s death was caused by the gunshot wound to the head, and ruled his death a suicide.

About the Author