Skip to main content

The Journal Gazette

Friday, August 16, 2019 1:00 am

Coroner finds drugs in Dayton gunman

Associated Press

CINCINNATI – The gunman in Dayton who killed nine people had cocaine, an antidepressant and alcohol in his system during the mass shooting and was cut down by a barrage of at least two dozen police bullets that penetrated gaps in his body armor, a coroner said Thursday.

Montgomery County coroner Dr. Kent Harshbarger said authorities found a pipe device and a baggie of cocaine on 24-year-old Connor Betts. Harshbarger also said in his preliminary findings that Betts had more than 50 entry and exit wounds.

“This incident involved an intense firefight that is rarely seen other than combat and an active-shooter incident,” Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl said. “The officers were confronted with a moving shooter wearing body armor, actively executing victims with an AR-15-type weapon and high-capacity magazines.”

The coroner said police gunfire hit two people. One of them died, but Harshbarger said the gunman, not police, fired the lethal round.

Police investigators will review the medical records of the 17 wounded to determine if any were struck by the officers' bullets, Biehl said.