PICKAWAY – On April 30, 2021 the South Bloomfield Police Department initiated a traffic stop at 9:26 P.M.in the area of Wendy’s on US Rte. 23. The suspect vehicle failed to stop and led Police Officers from the South Bloomfield Police Department, Ashville Police Department and the Ohio State Highway Patrol in a vehicle pursuit from South Bloomfield to Ashville, through Ashville and back out to South Bloomfield. The suspect vehicle then went off road through a field near Renick’s Farm Market. The Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office became involved in the incident at that point. At around 9:36 P.M., the suspect vehicle crashed into a ditch in the field. At roughly 9:37 P.M., it was relayed to the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office Communications Center that one person had been detained.
A use of force complaint was filed with the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office on an incident that occurred when the suspect was detained.
The Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office reviewed the body and dash camera footage that was provided to them on May 4, 2021. After receiving the footage from the Ashville Police Department and the South Bloomfield Police Department, Deputy Ryan J. Howard was placed on Administrative Leave, the same day, May 4, 2021, pending an investigation.
An investigation was conducted into the use of force complaint which culminated into criminal charges being filed in the Circleville Municipal Court. Ryan J. Howard was charged with Assault, a Misdemeanor of the First Degree; Falsification, a Misdemeanor of the First Degree; and Dereliction of Duty, a Misdemeanor of the Second Degree.
A detailed investigation was conducted to ensure due process was given to Howard.
An internal investigation, moving towards termination, is also underway into the use of force complaint that was filed.
Sheriff Hafey holds his Deputies and staff to the highest ethical and professional standards. It is the policy of this office to terminate anyone who fails to meet those high standards. We cannot protect and serve the community without trust, and when that trust is violated, swift action must be taken.