Security guard, inmate die after shooting at Miami Valley Hospital

Sheriff will have deputies with inmates at hospitals during investigation into deadly ER encounter.

A private security guard died after he was reportedly shot by a Montgomery County Jail inmate at Miami Valley Hospital on Wednesday morning.

The inmate was being treated in the hospital’s emergency department when he took an armed security guard’s gun and shot the guard before fatally shooting himself in the parking lot behind the emergency room, said Dayton police Maj. Brian Johns.

Dayton police confirmed the security guard died Wednesday afternoon. Officials did not immediately release the identities of the guard nor the inmate.

“This is a horrific event. Hearing about events like this morning is just unreal,” Montgomery County Sheriff Rob Streck said Wednesday afternoon.

The security guard was a private guard for Merchants Security. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office has contracted with Merchants Security and other local security firms to guard inmates admitted to hospitals for more than 21 years, said Streck.

Merchant Security did not responded to a request for comment from the Dayton Daily News, but posted an announcement to its Facebook page, saying “It’s with a heavy heart that Merchants Security must share that we have lost one of our dearest and most dedicated officers today. Our hearts are broken for our friend and coworker and his family.” It went on to say that it is grateful for the love and support it has received but it can’t release any information until the investigation ends.

While the investigation is ongoing, Streck ordered deputies to stay with any inmate admitted to the hospital.

“Not all of our inmates who are at hospitals are there with private security,” Streck said. “Very often deputy sheriffs are with them depending on their classification, past crimes and behavior.”

The inmate was booked into the Montgomery County Jail on Sunday on a probation violation. He had been booked into the jail six times for minor drug-related or traffic offenses, the sheriff said.

“There is nothing in this individual’s past that led anyone to believe that such a horrific incident would occur,” Streck said.

The inmate reportedly got sick overnight and was admitted to Miami Valley Hospital early Wednesday morning. The security guard took over custody of the inmate at the hospital.

Credit: Jim Noelker

Credit: Jim Noelker

The inmate was being treated in the emergency department when he overpowered the security guard and took his weapon, the sheriff said.

Streck said armed security guards do have to go through training with the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy.

“This is the only critical incident we are aware of involving an inmate with security on them at the hospital,” said Streck. “We have not had any issues in the past.”

As a general rule inmates are handcuffed at the hospital, Johns said Wednesday morning. However, sometimes that changes due to the medical procedures that are taking place.

Officers already were at the hospital on a different incident when the shooting took place, Johns added.

Emergency department services were rerouted during the initial aftermath of the incident, but shortly after noon all normal operations resumed at the hospital.

Miami Valley Hospital is safe and secure, said Mike Uhl, Miami Valley Hospital president. No hospital staff members were injured.

The investigation was contained to the emergency department and did not affect the rest of Miami Valley’s campus.

Uhl said the hospital will cooperate with officers as they continue to investigate.

The hospital has its own campus police division, Uhl said, but it’s not unusual for Miami Valley Hospital to have deputies or Dayton police in the emergency department due to the nature of its services.

Credit: Jim Noelker

Credit: Jim Noelker