By Associated Press - Tuesday, December 14, 2021

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — A man with a history of mental illness who ran out of a Dayton home with a gun during a standoff that followed at least one earlier shooting died after he was shot by officers, police said Tuesday.

Interim Chief Matt Carper of the Dayton police department said a 49-year-old man walking his dog Tuesday said he was shot in the leg after his dog ran toward the home. Police said the suspect had been reported firing a weapon outside just minutes earlier, something neighbors said he had done before.

Police surrounded the home but said the suspect, 21-year-old William Gardner, refused to come outside. Police said chemical agents were used and Gardner eventually emerged from a basement door holding a handgun. He then ran past SWAT officers near the door and headed toward other officers, Carper said.

“Due to Gardner being armed, his previous violent actions against the community, and quickly advancing toward SWAT officers, lethal force was used to stop the imminent threat,” Carper said.

First aid was administered and Gardner was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead Tuesday morning, police said. Police said a .9 mm handgun with almost a dozen rounds was recovered.



Gardner had no criminal history but had a “pretty significant” and recent history of mental health issues and had been hospitalized, Carper said. Police said relatives last month expressed concerns that he might be suicidal or homicidal and were also concerned about his possession of firearms, Carper said.

Carper said nine SWAT officers armed with rifles fired a total of 37 rounds. He said the Montgomery County county sheriff’s department will investigate and police will also do an internal investigation.

Police are also investigating a report that another man was shot in the leg Monday at the home and Gardner refused to come outside when officers arrived. Investigators never found a victim of that reported shooting but do believe someone was wounded, Carper said.

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