Southwest Ohio man gets 8 years for forcing child into trunk as punishment

Damon Ellis

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Damon Ellis

The boy, 8, had no coat or shoes on during 20 degree weather.

A 44-year-old Dayton man was sentenced Wednesday to at least eight years in prison after he was found guilty of forcibly dragging an 8-year-old boy, who had no coat or shoes on, into the trunk of a car to punish him during subfreezing conditions.

Damon Eugene Ellis was found guilty June 8 by a Montgomery County Common Pleas Court jury of kidnapping and endangering children.

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“The actions of this defendant were shocking. He forced a child into the trunk of a car without shoes or a coat when it was about 20 degrees outside,” Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr. stated in a release. “Thankfully, a citizen called police and reported what he saw. This is an excellent example of why we say ‘see something, say something.’”

A neighbor called 911 on Dec. 26, 2020, to report that Ellis dragged an 8-year-old boy from his Water Street apartment in Dayton and locked him in the trunk of a car.

Video surveillance showed Ellis lock the child in the trunk and then walk away, leaving the boy inside the trunk for approximately 15 seconds before releasing him, according to court documents.

The child told police that Ellis put him in the trunk to discipline him, according to a release from the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office.

Ellis remains in the Montgomery County Jail, where he has been held since his Monday arrest by Dayton police.

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