Man who fired at police in 2020 Warren Co. shootout sentenced to more than 50 years

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Suspect in Hamilton homicide led law enforcement on pursuit that ended with gunfire.

LEBANON — A Somerville man who shot at police officers, injuring one, was sentenced to 50-plus years in prison Monday afternoon.

Christopher Hubbard was found guilty by a Warren County jury earlier this month of multiple felony charges, including felonious assault, for shooting at police officers in Turtlecreek Twp. in 2020.

Christopher J. Hubbard, 38, and Middletown police Sgt. Dennis Jordan were shot on Aug. 31, 2020 after the chase that began in the area of 18th Avenue in Middletown and ended in the 2600 block of Mason-Montgomery Road in Turtlecreek Twp.

Hubbard was indicted Dec. 21, 2020 by a Warren County grand jury for attempted murder and felonious assault for allegedly shooting Jordan; attempted aggravated murder and felonious assault for allegedly shooting at Butler County Sheriff’s deputy Mike Barger and attempted aggravated murder and felonious assault for allegedly shooting at Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper Brett Lee. The charges contain gun specifications that add to Hubbard’s sentence.

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He was found not guilty of the attempted murder charges. Hubbard could not have been sentenced for both the attempted murder and felonious assault if found guilty, so the sentencing parameters were the same.

Hubbard was also found guilty of two counts of having weapons under disability, failure to comply, improper handling of a firearms in a motor vehicle and a second-degree misdemeanor charge of assaulting a police dog.

Jordan’s dog, Koda, attempted to apprehend Hubbard while he sat in the car. The police dog was not hit by gunfire. Jordan, shot in the shoulder and finger, has recovered and returned to the police force.

Both Koda and Jordan were in the courtroom Monday for Hubbard’s sentencing.

Assistant Prosecutor Steve Knippen stated before sentencing that Hubbard has “not accepted responsibility for his actions and shows no remorse.”

Knippen pointed to Hubbard’s long criminal history and prison sentences, noting the first thing he did when released in May 2020 was to purchase a gun, knowing he was not permitted to do so. He said during trial Hubbard used the proceedings to make himself look like a victim.

Hubbard made it “crystal clear” he was not going back to prison and was going to get in a shootout with police, Knippen said.

Hubbard fired five shots, “two shots were on target and could have taken Officer Jordan’s life,” Knippen said.

Hubbard declined to speak, stating he had been advised not to do so by his attorneys. There will be an appeal.

Jordan, who testified at trial, made no statement.

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Warren County Common Pleas Judge Tim Tepe sentenced Hubbard to 56 years in prison and said he believes Hubbard is dangerous to law enforcement and the public. Hubbard could serve an addition 5.5 years if he behaves badly in prison.

“You have not taken any responsibility,” Tepe said to Hubbard. “I believe you are dangerous. I believe you are manipulative.”

Hubbard led police on a 28-mile chase from Middletown to Mason-Montgomery Road on the afternoon of Aug. 31, 2020. In the days before, Hubbard made statements to family and his parole officer saying he wasn’t going back to jail and was going to get into a shootout with police.

An investigation by the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation indicated Hubbard shot first, striking Jordan, and that eight officers returned fire.

Defense attorneys said Hubbard acted in self-defense when the pursuit triggered his PTSD and he was attempting to shoot the police dog as it lunged into the window of his car because he was in fear for his life.

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