What started out as a wellness check instantly turned into an unnerving shootout. Quick reflexes by an Ohio deputy allowed her to literally dodge a bullet in what could have been a fatal encounter.
Officers with the Warren County Sheriff’s Office went on a wellness check on Feb. 15 in Mason, Ohio. Law enforcement officers were responding to a 911 call where a man said his brother had taken something and just wanted to go to sleep, WXIX reported.
Doorbell camera footage shows Deputy Sara Vaught outside the front door of the home waiting for the resident to respond. She is seen on video at the door waiting for the homeowner to come outside. She can be heard saying, “Here he is” as the resident opens the door.
Suddenly, the homeowner points a handgun through the door and shoots at Vaught. The dramatic video shows that she barely gets out of the way of the gunfire by slinking down. The gunslinging deputy immediately returns fire from a squatting position.
Vaught fired several shots, which hit the suspect, identified as 56-year-old Lance Runion by the Warren County Sheriff’s Office.
Other officers rush towards the firefight and demand the shooter show his hands.
Fellow officers ask Vaught if she is injured, and she breathlessly responds, “I’m good, I’m good, I think. I think I’m good.”
Incredibly, Vaught was not hurt at all.
Runion was shot several times, and deputies performed “lifesaving measures” at the scene. He was reportedly in critical but stable condition. Runion is still hospitalized.
Warren County, Ohio Sheriff Deputy Sara Vaught is lucky to be alive — and the community she serves is lucky to have her. This is the epitome of courage shown by law enforcement across the nation. #CopsCountPoliceMatter
— Bill Bratton (@CommissBratton) March 3, 2021
Runion is said to have a history of “emotional issues,” his brother said, according to the police report. His brother said Runion “used to drink a lot and take pain meds” but had been “clean since July,” Law and Crime reported. The brother was reportedly concerned about a possible overdose after Runion sent a text message to family members telling them that he loved them.
The brother allegedly informed police that Runion had guns in the house, but didn’t believe he would use them, WCHS reported.
Runion was charged with first-degree attempted murder and first-degree felonious assault in the incident.
Warren County Sheriff’s Office
Vaught, a deputy since 2014, is currently on administrative leave as an investigation into the shooting is carried out.
— Karin Johnson WLWT (@karinjohnson) March 2, 2021