Special Prosecutor To Look At Possible Charges Against Crawford 911 Caller
Possible criminal charges against the 911 caller in the John Crawford Case are still up in the air, as is the federal investigation of potential charges against officers who shot and killed Crawford responding to that call.
Last week, Fairborn Municipal Court Judge Beth Root ruled there was probable cause to seek a misdemeanor charge of filing a false report against Ronald Ritchie, the 911 caller who reported that John Crawford III was waving a rifle at customers in a Beavercreek Wal-Mart.
In-store video synced up with the 911 call has generated questions about Ritchie’s culpability in Crawford’s death. The gun Crawford picked up was an air-rifle sold by Wal-Mart.
The Fairborn prosecutor who would assess those possible charges, Betsy Deeds, has told media outlets that she works too closely with Beavercreek police and wants to avoid any impropriety. She’s asking special prosecutor, Mark Piepmeier, to handle case. Piepmeijer is the chief assistant prosecutor for Hamilton County. He presented evidence in the Crawford case to a Greene County grand jury in 2014.
That grand jury found no evidence to press charges against the officers who shot Crawford but a federal criminal investigation is still underway.
Benjamin C. Glassman is the new Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio handling the Crawford case. In an interview with WYSO, he would only answer the question of why the investigation wasn’t yet complete.
“What we’re focused on is making sure that we make a decision only after a comprehensive review of all of the available evidence is complete, and that process is still ongoing,” he said.
Glassman took over the investigation from U.S. Attorney Carter Stewart who left his post last month.