Thursday, February 18, 2010

Leetonia police diffuse serious gun incident

POSTED: February 18, 2010
 LEETONIA- The cool, calm efficiency of the village police department Sunday night helped diffuse a serious situation at a Columbia Street residence.
According to the police report, Dispatcher Becky Shearer received a call at 11:10 p.m. Sunday from a man at a residence in the 300 block of Columbia Street who claimed that his wife was threatening suicide with a .38 revolver.
While speaking with the man, Shearer heard five shots fired in the home, in which were the couple's three children aged 15, 12 and 9.
Once on scene, Officer Curtiss Wetzel was able to talk down the suspect, who was alternatingly pointing the gun at herself and in his direction.
Kimberly Alice Henline, 41, of 359 Columbia St., was charged with three misdemeanor counts of child endangering and one misdemeanor count of using a firearm while intoxicated. She voluntarily turned herself in after being released from observation at St. Elizabeth's Hospital Wednesday morning and was transported to the Columbiana County Jail.
"This was obviously a very serious situation that could have turned tragic if not for the efforts of Shearer and Wetzel," Police Chief John Soldano said. "We as a small town are not immune to these situations and our officers are out there each night putting their lives on the line. I have to commend [Shearer and Wetzel] for staying calm and diffusing the situation."
According to the report filed by Wetzel, he observed a hole in the ceiling apparently made by a gunshot from the second story which the husband stated was just several feet from where the children were in the living room on the floor below.
Henline was transported by EMS to St. Elizabeth's Hospital for evaluation. Her husband reported that she had been taking "some sort of diet pills," according to the report.
Columbiana County Children Services was notified of the incident. Washingtonville police assisted.
Kevin Howell can be reached at

No comments: