By Whitney Vickers
YELLOW SPRINGS — Yellow Springs Police Chief David Hale resigned from his post Tuesday evening following happenings at the village’s annual New Year’s Eve Ball Drop event.
Village Manager Patti Bates read a statement on Hale’s behalf during a special meeting Tuesday evening, saying “after the officers on scene made a very poor decision to shut down the event early, they compounded the error by using extremely poor tactics, utilizing their cruiser sirens and horns instead of being on foot trying to verbally gain compliance,” adding that he could not justify why the officers broke up the New Year’s Eve celebration early.
The announcement was met with cheers from hundreds of locals, according to WDTN, who gathered for the special meeting at the John Bryan Community Center gymnasium to discuss the New Year’s Eve happenings. Yellow Springs Council was originally scheduled to meet in a regular session that evening, however the agenda was tabled following the midnight events.
According to the Yellow Springs Police Department, David Carlson, 29, of Fairborn, appeared intoxicated at the event, and started leaning against the door of an occupied police cruiser. Officers said when Carlson was asked to move, he refused, and a door fight began between him and the officer in the cruiser. Once the door was forced open and the officer was able to exit the vehicle, police said Carlson grabbed a taser from the officer’s hand and ran into the crowd.
Upon officers catching up with Carlson, police said a struggle between them erupted, a taser was deployed unsuccessfully and he was able to escape once again. However, Carlson was arrested without incident approximately 12:52 a.m. after officers were called to respond to a possible altercation at the Gulch, a local bar on the 100 block of Dayton Street. He was taken to the Greene County Jail in the early hours of 2017 and has since been charged with theft, a misdemeanor of the first degree; and obstructing official business, a felony of the fifth degree. Police said the taser has yet to be found.
Additional news reports said officers also slowly drove a cruiser into the crowd shortly following the ball drop using lights and sirens to disperse them — which was not a welcomed action to attendees, as they responded by chanting “police go home,” according to videos of the happenings obtained by our partners at WDTN.
Hale officially became chief for the village approximately two years ago, following nearly 30 years of service to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, according to WDTN.