Accused killer apologizes to family

9-1-1 call after Home Avenue shooting

“My daughter is shot two times in the head, and my niece is shot in the head too,” DaWan Culpepper said upon calling 9-1-1 for help Sunday.

“I came home … he was in my house,” Culpepper told the dispatcher. “Who was in your house?” the dispatcher asked.

“Dameon Wesley,” Culpepper answered through tears.

“I need you to stay on the line, okay?” this dispatcher said.

“Yes,” Culpepper answered. She then gave a description of Wesley, and asked the dispatcher to quickly send help.

“Are they beyond help?” the dispatcher asked.

“My daughter is not responding to me,” Culpepper said as her crying intensified.

She then told the dispatcher there may be a third person shot, and that person is her niece’s friend. The investigation found the friend had not been shot.

Culpepper also told the dispatcher she didn’t know Wesley was there; he had been standing behind her door.

“How far away did you have to go to call?” the dispatcher asked.

“A block away,” Culpepper said, still crying.

The ex-con accused of killing a 13-year-old Dayton girl on Sunday was denied release from prison in 2010 because the state parole board said his release “would create undue risk to public safety.”

Dameon Wesley, 39, was denied parole four times before he was released last August. Five months later he is accused of gunning down the eighth-grade girl and critically injuring another following a heated argument with his girlfriend.

Wesley, who served 18 years for the murder of his roommate, said it was not his intent to shoot the young girls when he showed up unannounced at their home on Sunday.

“I’m sorry I took your world away from you, Dawan. That was not my intent,” Wesley said Tuesday as he was led away, in handcuffs, by Dayton police to the Montgomery County Jail.

Wesley, 39, was on the run from the law since he fled the scene of the shooting at 2512 Home Ave., the house where his ex-girlfriend Dawan Culpepper lived with her only child Briona Rodgers.

Rodgers died of multiple gunshot wounds to the head, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office. The 13-year-old was an eighth-grader at City Day Community School in Dayton.

“She really was a phenomenal leader and a great asset to our school,” said Rodgers’ Language Arts teacher, Dormetria Thompson. “Briona could have gone on to be anything that she wanted to be because of her high level of scholastic ability and leadership skills.”

Rodgers’ cousin Alonta Culpepper, an eighth-grader at Wogaman elementary school, was also wounded and is recuperating in the hospital after having surgery, according to family members.

“She is able to talk,” said DaQuawna Farrow, Alonta Culpepper’s aunt.

Wesley appeared via video at his Tuesday arraignment hearing. Dayton Municipal Court Judge Carl Henderson set his bond at $2 million and scheduled a preliminary hearing for March 8.

Wesley faces the possible filing of felony charges of murder, aggravated burglary, kidnapping, felonious assault, having weapons while under disability and parole violation.

“My daughter was shot two times in the head and my niece is shot in the head too,” Dawan Culpepper said to a 911 dispatcher following the shooting.

She told the dispatcher she came home to find Wesley standing behind her bedroom door and that he had a revolver. Another young girl was in the house, but was not shot by Wesley, Culpepper said.

“Oh, my God, my baby is going to be dead,” Culpepper said, crying to the dispatcher.

Police were able to arrest Wesley early Tuesday after they were called late Monday night to a hit-skip crash on Holyoke Avenue that involved two SUVs. One of the drivers, who matched Wesley’s description, fled the scene. Wesley, who is unemployed, was captured hours later on Prescott Avenue and booked into the county jail at 7:20 a.m.

“I love you with all of my heart. I’m in love with you,” Wesley said on his way to the county jail. “I guess God do get his justice. That’s why I am right here, right now.”

When asked by media if he had anything he wanted to say to the victims, Wesley responded, “Sorry. I apologize and I apologize to the entire Culpepper family. And I apologize to the guys up in the prison who had faith in me and I let them all down.”

Rodgers’ family members said Wesley and Dawan Culpepper met through an online dating services.

The couple has come in contact with the law before.

Greg Flannagan, spokesman for the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office, said the office reviewed a rape complaint that Dawan Culpepper made against Wesley in January but declined to file any charges, due to “insufficient evidence.”

Rodgers was listed as a witness on the police incident report.

Flannagan also said that it was too early to speculate on whether Wesley could face the death penalty in the current case. The office will review all evidence, which is still being collected, he said.

Wesley spent 18 years in prison for the 1994 murder of his former roommate Marvin Williams Jr.

Prosecutors said it was Wesley’s idea to plead guilty to murder to that crime so they would drop a grand theft charge and a firearm specification. He was sentenced to 15 years to life.

Wesley went before the parole board four times, in 2004, 2008, 2010 and 2012, the year he was released. In October 2004, the board denied his release, stating “inmate’s institutional conduct has been poor having at least two tickets for marijuana.”

The 2010 board decision stated that Wesley “was heavily involved in the drug trade as an enforcer for a major drug dealer” and “Offender has a history drug selling since he was a young child and was very active in acting out violently.”

That decision noted that his institutional conduct had improved in recent years, “and he has programed very well. However the release of the inmate into society would create undue risk to public safety and would not be in the interest of justice.”

In August 2012, the board decided to release Wesley, finding that “Wesley has made an acceptable institutional adjustment, has formulated an appropriate release plan, and has participated in programming that suggests that his risk can be safely managed under parole supervision at this time.”

Funeral services for Rodgers have been scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday at Victory Deliverance Ministries, 4101 N. Main St. Viewing will be at 10 a.m.

A memorial fund has been set up under Briona Rodgers name. People can donate at any Wright-Patt Credit Union in the Miami Valley. The funds will go to cover funeral expenses for Briona.

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