Det. Bill Brewer, a 20-year veteran of the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office with a wife and 5-year-old son, has been identified as the deputy killed in a 12-hour standoff at an apartment complex that started Saturday night and ended Sunday morning.
A deputy wounded in the standoff has been identified as Lt. Nick DeRose a 22-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. DeRose was treated and released from University of Cincinnati Medical Center, according to the Sheriff's Office.
The Sheriff's Office identified the suspect as Wade Edward Winn, 23, who was taken into custody at 6:35 a.m. after firing multiple rounds during the standoff at The Green at Royal Oak Apartments. Winn had barricaded himself in his apartment and was threatening to kill himself, according to Clermont County authorities.
"Deputy Brewer gave his life attempting to help a person who was admittedly suicidal," Sheriff Steve Leahy said in a statement. “This will forever change the atmosphere of the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office.”
According to the Sheriff's Office, the suspect called 911 and reported that he believed someone was inside his apartment on St. Andrews Drive. The caller also said he was suicidal and had a gun.
Near the end of the standoff, a fire started in the building and caused extensive damage. In a brief statement, Capt. Jeff Sellers of the Sheriff's Office confirmed that the two-alarm fire was connected to the standoff, but Sellers gave no indication how the fire started.
The apartment complex is next to Stillmeadow Country Club, formerly known as Royal Oak Golf Course.
WCPO’s Jasmine Minor, reporting overnight from a media vantage point a half-mile away from the apartment building, said she heard more shots fired shortly after 6 a.m., and shouts of "Go! Go! Go!" Minor said she saw police cars and fire trucks racing toward the building, then she saw flames shooting through the roof.
WATCH WCPO's raw video from the scene:
#BREAKING In the video below, you will hear:
??Deputies on megaphone “Come outside... we won’t hurt you.”
??Firetrucks/deputy car sirens on driving toward apt.
??MORE gunshots @WCPO pic.twitter.com/IJPdiKbVi8
— Jasmine Minor (@jasminenminor) February 3, 2019
Minor reported hearing rounds of gunfire at several times overnight. She said she heard deputies on megaphones saying, "Come out with your hands up! We don't want to hurt you!"
Earlier, police confirmed that one male suspect was still inside the building,
Here's a timeline from deputies:
- 6:56 p.m.: Call for welfare check at apartment on St. Andrews Drive;
- 8:15 p.m.: First shots reported inside apartment building;
- 8:25 p.m.: Back up (other agencies) arrive;
- 10:37 p.m.: Two Clermont County deputies shot.
Before the standoff ended, a deputy on the scene told WCPO they had not shot back at the barricaded man but they did fire a flash-bang grenade shortly before midnight. A flash-bang emits an intensely loud "bang" and a blinding flash designed to disorient or incapacitate a suspect.
Sellers called it a very sad day for the Clermont County Sheriff's Office.
Police escorted Brewer's body from the Hamilton County Coroner's Office to Nurre Funeral Home on St. Rt. 125 in Clermont County. They departed the Coroner's Office about 11 a.m. going east on Martin Luther King Drive, south on I-71, south on I-471, east on I-275, to east St. Rt. 125.
Sellers said the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations (BCI) would handle the investigation of the standoff and the Ohio Fire Marshal would direct the fire investigation.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tweeted his condolences.
.@FranDeWine and I are heartbroken to learn of the death of Officer Bill Brewer and injury to Officer Nick DeRose in the line of duty. Please keep their families and @ClermontSheriff in your thoughts and prayers.
— Mike DeWine (@MikeDeWine) February 3, 2019
Some residents had been standing outside unable to return to their apartments since the incident began. Clermont County dispatch said some roads in the area were closed, and people were advised to avoid the area.
After one round of gunfire, officials directed news crews to move back from the area around the apartment building.
Lt. Julie Poe with Pierce Twp. police told WCPO a suspect barricaded himself inside his apartment shortly before 7 p.m. and officers immediately responded, with SWAT teams from Cincinnati police assisting Clermont County.
Residents reported seeing a heavy police presence Saturday evening, and said they could hear police using megaphones.
Aircare dispatch confirmed they received a call from the area for medical support, but were unable to respond due to weather issues.
Just one full month into the new year, 2019 has been tragic already for local law officers:
On Jan. 4, Colerain police officer Dale Woods was hit by a moving vehicle while Woods was working another traffic accident on Colerain Avenue. Woods, a 15-year veteran, passed away three days later at UC Medical Center. The driver of the vehicle that struck Woods remained at the scene. No charges have yet been filed, but the case remains under investigation.
On Jan. 29, Clearcreek Township officer Jerrid M. Lee, off-duty at the time, was killed in a vehicle crash on Ohio SR 125 near Lindale Mount Holly Road in Clermont County. Lee died at the scene. The driver of the other vehicle has been charged with aggravated vehicular homicide. Authorities believe drugs were a factor in the crash.
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