DAYTON — An Indiana man faces up to 16 1/2 years in prison for a deadly active shooter threat in June that drew law enforcement from multiple agencies, including five SWAT teams, to a large brick commercial building in Dayton.
Jacob Alan Ashba, 31, of Terre Haute, Indiana, pleaded guilty Friday in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court to reckless homicide, felonious assault discharge of a firearm on or near prohibited premises and three counts of tampering with evidence.
Law enforcement officers from multiple agencies, including five SWAT crews, responded June 17 to the Davis-Linden Building at 400 Linden Ave. for an active shooter threat updated to a shooting with a suspect inside the building and additional shots fired, Lt. Steve Bauer of the Dayton Police Department previously said.
“Two carloads of guys got out and they are arguing with people working in the Davis-Linden Building,” one of multiple 911 callers said, according to Montgomery County Regional Dispatch Center records.
Another caller said some of the men who arrived had baseball bats and were beating another man. He reported hearing shots fired from at least two guns, including a shotgun.
“Somebody’s been shot,” a caller said.
When crews arrived, Bauer said they found one man deceased and another person injured. The man killed was identified as 45-year-old Randy E. Allen of Dayton by Montgomery County Coroner Dr. Kent Harshbarger.
Brian Shaffer, who works at a video production company in the Davis-Linden Building said he was leaving the office when he saw the large police response.
“Our business is on the other side of the building,” Shaffer said. “I went out to run to the convenience store real quick when I noticed all of the police. I ran back and grabbed a camera when I realized they were focused on our building. When I exited, snipers and everything had their guns pointed at me, then they rushed up to escort me away.”
In video obtained from We Do Videos, SWAT teams can be seen searching the building.
The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio State Highway Patrol and police from the University of Dayton, West Carrollton and Trotwood police departments and the FBI were among those that responded.
Investigators initially arrested Ashba in Centerville, but he was released after charges weren’t filed.
Dayton police Chief Kamren Afzal said at the time it was unusual for a suspect to be released without charges, but there have been previous cases where police needed to get more information.
“We are looking at probable cause and prosecutors are looking for beyond a reasonable doubt,” he said. “That just means we need to do more work.”
When Ashba was indicted in August, the grand jury that heard evidence in the case ignored two counts of murder, according to the Aug. 15 grand jury report.
As part of his plea, an additional felonious assault count and a misdemeanor charge of obstructing official business were dismissed.
Ashba is held in the Montgomery County Jail awaiting a Feb. 27 sentencing hearing.