Officers shoot, kill suspect to end standoff at South Lebanon home

Sheriff describes what happened

SOUTH LEBANON, Ohio -- Officers shot and killed a man after he waved a shotgun at them and threatened to kill them during a standoff, Warren County Sheriff Larry Sims said Tuesday.

Deputy Ryan Sailor, Mason Officer Aaron Schaffer and Lebanon Officer Nathan Trout are on leave after the shooting of 56-year-old Gary Cook Monday night.

The incident started when deputies tried to serve Cook with a civil protection order filed by his mother.

Lebanon shooting

She and other family members wanted Cook out of their home in the 4800 block of Lebanon Road. They said he threatened them and forced them to stay at a hotel.

When deputies arrived about 5:15 p.m., Cook threatened the deputies, Sims said. He had been drinking and refused to leave.

"There would be statements like, 'Kiss your family because I'm going to kill all of you. This is not going to end well.  I'm not coming out' - basically shouting statements about how he would kill people,"
 Sims said.

When the Warren County Tactical Response Unit arrived, Cook had a shotgun and was wearing a white bulletproof vest, Sims said.

According to deputies, he showed the shotgun at officers from an upstairs window.

"The second time he got out the shotgun again and was bringing it up in an aiming fashion as if he was going to try to point it at an individual and that's when officers engaged, not allowing him to shoot at them, and they eliminated the threat,"
 Sims said.

The three officers fired five rounds, killing Cook, Sims said.

Cook's shotgun was loaded, Sims said. There was one shell in the chamber and the safety was off. 


Cook had previous run-ins with the sheriff's office dating back to 2009, Sims said.

"No one wants to go to these types of calls, but they did what they had to do," Sims said. "This is what they trained for. They hope they don't have to use it, but they did what was necessary and that's what's unfortunate for Mr. Cook and his family."




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