MOUNT VERNON, Ohio (WCMH) – A Knox County grand jury exonerated officers involved in two separate August shooting cases in which three total suspects died.
On Aug. 21, several units were involved in serving a search warrant on Gilchrist Road in Monroe Township, just northeast of Mount Vernon. The suspects, Randy Wilhelm, 56, and his brother Bradley Wilhelm, 53, fled the scene on an off-road vehicle after shooting at officers in armored cars behind the house.
They drove towards their mother’s home, also on Gilchrist Road, where a Delaware Tactical Unit was attempting to escort the mother to safety. When the brothers arrived the Knox County Sheriff’s Office said that Randy began to raise a rifle. Officers fired at the brothers, hitting them multiple times, and they both died after the several-hour-long standoff.
Authorities continued to search the brother’s property and seized over 1,000 firearms, including sporting shotguns and hunting rifles, along with more than 140,000 rounds of ammunition. Five law enforcement agencies reportedly fired shots during the incident. All parties involved were found to have justifiably used necessary force by the grand jury.
In a separate incident on Aug. 22, Knox County deputies responded to a call about a woman violating a court order not to enter a property on Zuck Road in Butler Township, west of Mount Vernon. Deputies arrived and were confronted by Elizabeth Delano, 41, who broke into a home she used to live in.
Brandishing a shotgun, she fired several times at the deputies. She was struck by return fire and pronounced dead at Knox Community Hospital.
Likewise, it was ruled that Deputy Michael Collins’ use of force was found to be justified in self-defense and in defense of the other deputies present.