A Dayton man whose 13-year-old son died of a suspected heroin overdose wants his bond reduced and evidence suppressed in an unrelated case, despite objections from prosecutors.
Nathan Wylie, 13, died April 1 after being found unresponsive a few days earlier. No one has been charged in the teen’s death.
Robert Wylie, his father, has been jailed on unrelated charges from a December 17 traffic stop and appeared in court Thursday. His attorney sought to suppress evidence from the traffic stop, and new testimony revealed that Nathan was in the car that day with his father, who was found with heroin and cocaine, according to officers.
Defense attorney Kristine Comunale also wants Robert Wylie’s bond reduced.
“There is no indication that more serious charges related to the death of his son are going to be (initiated) against him,” Comunale wrote in a motion. “Defendant has a minimal prior criminal history and is not a flight risk.”
Prosecutors oppose any bond modification because the same type of drugs found during the December traffic stop could be connected to Nathan’s death.
“Currently, the Dayton Police Department is investigating the death of the defendant’s 13-year-old son (Nathan) caused by a suspected overdose from drugs located in the defendant’s home that occurred on March 28th, 2017,” Montgomery County assistant prosecutor Trent Sulek wrote in his response.
“The defendant is a key suspect in the death of (Nathan). As the court is aware, homicide investigations are thorough and require time to properly investigate before bringing charges.”
When Nathan was found unresponsive in late March, his father’s co-worker, who was at the scene, told police Robert Wylie was “on drugs and the boy got into his stuff,” an incident report said.
The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office said they are waiting for Nathan’s autopsy results before deciding if Robert Wylie, 40, would face any charges in that case. The coroner’s office said Thursday that the cause and manner of Nathan’s death are not yet available.
Communale sought Thursday to suppress evidence from the December traffic stop. Robert Wylie’s girlfriend, Tina Davis, was driving that day.
Comunale argued that police didn’t have the right to pat down Robert Wylie after Davis was stopped while driving an SUV. She also noted that Robert Wylie was not read any Miranda warning.
When questioned by Sulek, Dayton police officer Sarah Moody testified that her partner thought he saw a possible car-to-car drug transaction. That detail was not in the Dayton police incident report about the December incident.
Moody testified that after not pursuing the first car because it sped away, they pursued the other vehicle and stopped it for failing to use a turn signal.
Moody and Dayton police officer William Davis testified that Nathan was in the back of the SUV. Tina Davis was ordered out of the car after she couldn’t produce a driver’s license.
Tina Davis also granted police consent to search her SUV, so officers asked Robert and Nathan Wylie to get out of the car to search it. Officer Davis testified that he asked Robert Wylie if he had anything that could “poke me, stab me, stick me, hurt me?”
Officer Davis testified that when Robert Wylie exited the vehicle, the man became “very, very nervous” and that he exhibited quick motions, kept looking around, shifting on his feet and “patting his pockets.”
Officer Davis’ testimony indicated and cruiser cam video showed — that Robert Wylie answered that he had a “rig” — slang for a hypodermic needle used to take heroin. The officer asked Robert Wylie if he had any drugs and the man said there were drugs in his pocket.
The other West Patrol officer — who allegedly saw the possible drug transaction — did not testify. Comunale said the suspected drug transaction was hearsay.
Judge Steven Dankof asked the attorneys to submit briefs and cite case law before he will rule.
Robert Wylie’s current bond is $100,00. He wore blue Montgomery County Jail clothing during Thursday’s hearing. The bond modification issue was not discussed in open court.
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