Prosecutor: No charges against clerks who shot, killed robber

Source: Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office
Source: Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office
BB gun used by Lashawn Daniels (Source: Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office)
BB gun used by Lashawn Daniels (Source: Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office)

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said Tuesday that charges will not be filed against the two gas station clerks who shot and killed robber who was carrying a BB gun.

The shooting happened early Monday morning at the Sunoco station on Hamilton Avenue in Springfield Township.

Police say Lashawn Daniels, 19, entered the store wielding a gun and demanding cash.

The clerk who was working at the register immediately complied with Daniels' demands and started giving him money from the cash register.  The clerk had a 40 caliber weapon under his shirt but he was not able to retrieve his weapon as Daniels had a gun pointed at him.

Another clerk working in the back of the store was able to see what was happening on the store video and immediately hit the alarm button to notify the police and then came up behind Daniels with a shot gun.  As Daniels turned and pointed his gun toward the clerk with the shot gun, the clerk then fired twice.

One shot struck the counter and one shot struck Daniels.  At the same time, the other clerk was able to retrieve his 40 caliber weapon and ultimately fired four times at Daniels, hitting him twice.  It is unknown whether Daniels fired his weapon at any time.

After the clerks shot Daniels, surveillance video shows him lying on the store floor.  He is still alive at this time. The clerks can be seen prodding him and can be heard on the 911 call asking him where his gun is located. His gun was later recovered behind a counter in the store where it slid during the confrontation.

Daniels was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Springfield Township police investigation included review of the store videos, review of the 911 call, and interviews with the two store clerks and a thorough investigation of the crime scene. During the investigation, the police recovered the BB gun wielded by Daniels during the robbery.

After this thorough investigation by the Springfield Township Police Department and review by the Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office, Prosecutor Deters determined that no criminal charges were appropriate for the clerks. He said they would have had no way of knowing that the gun was only a BB gun.

"It is a shame that you have to arm yourself when you work in a convenience store to protect your property and, more importantly, your life from a gun wielding thief who enters your store and demands money at gun point," said Deters. "Fortunately, the two hard working and law abiding clerks were able to protect themselves and return home safely."

Daniels was a 2012 graduate of Mason High School and had taken part in Mason African-American Students for Change where he won the spoken word poetry contest and performed in a "Pasta for Pennies" talent show benefiting The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. He had also taken part in the local Young Life program.

Mason City Schools released a statement from Mason High School Principal Mindy McCarty-Stewart Tuesday saying, "He was kind and friendly and was well-liked by staff and students."

FOX19 has also confirmed Daniels was enrolled for the Fall 2012 semester at UC Blue Ash as a psychology major.

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