Police: Store owner fired gunshots in air to scare off teens all - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Police: Store owner fired gunshots in air to scare off teens allegedly shoplifting

Taher M. Taher  (Provided by Hamilton County Sheriff's Office) Taher M. Taher (Provided by Hamilton County Sheriff's Office)
ELMWOOD PLACE, OH (FOX19) -

A store owner is accused of firing gunshots into the air outside his business over the weekend to scare off teens who police say were allegedly trying to shoplift.

Court records show Taher M. Taher, 38, told Elmwood Place police on Sunday he was trying to scare off a group of teens he says were throwing rocks at his business, Elmwood Quick Stop Food Mart, 318 Oak St.

In an interview early Monday, police elaborated a bit, saying the teens were allegedly trying to steal items from his store.

No one was hurt.

Taher is held without bond at the Hamilton County jail and is scheduled to appear before a judge at 9 a.m.

He faces one count each of inducing panic and discharging a firearm on or near prohibited premises.

A criminal complaint states he “did discharge a firearm upon or over a public road or highway, and in doing so, created a substantial risk of physical harm to" another person.

While on patrol Sunday, police heard eight gunshots in a row and then received calls from citizens stating that the owner of the Elmwood Quick Stop Food Mart, 318 Oak St., was outside his store shooting shots into the air, police wrote in a sworn affidavit.

Upon arrival, police saw a man later identified as Taher inside his store pacing between the front and back of the counter, they wrote. He walked outside the front door.

At that time, police put the man at gunpoint and ordered him to the ground, records show. He complied. Cincinnati police arrived and helped Elmwood officer take Taher into custody. 

Officers asked him where his gun was.

"He stated he did not have a weapon that kids had shot at him," the sworn statement reads. Police placed him in the back of a police cruiser, and he told the officer that police could not enter his store without a warrant.

Police began working on getting one.  Taher was read his rights and stated he understood them, records show.

As the investigation continued and Elmwood Place Police Chief William Peskin arrived at the scene, Taher asked to speak with the chief and told Peskin he “wanted to be honest," records state.

"He started telling the chief the story that several kids started throwing rocks at his business and he grabbed his machete and told them he 'had something for them’, then laid the machete down and went to the rear of the store and grabbed his '45' and came back outside and started shooting it into the air," police wrote in the sworn statement.

A 45-caliber gun and fully loaded magazine was found under his mattress he told police he slept in, records state.

Police retrieved 10 spent 45-caliber shell casings on the street and sidewalk outside the store and the DVR "which contains video evidence of the incident that occurred inside the business," they wrote.

FOX19 NOW has a call into the police chief and will keep working to update this story.

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