911 caller details moments before Kent Police-involved shooting

911 caller details moments before Kent Police-involved shooting
Officers names not released in officer-involved shooting in Kent. (Source: WOIO)
Officers names not released in officer-involved shooting in Kent. (Source: WOIO)
Douglas Yon (Source: Facebook)
Douglas Yon (Source: Facebook)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The woman who called 911 for help when family member Douglas Yon would not leave her house shares new details about what happened before Kent Police shot and killed the 25-year-old.

The family member, who asked not to be named, says she never would have imagined that her call to police would end the way it did.

Around 3 a.m. on December 17, Kent Police Officers Benjamin Darrah, Dominic Poe, Michael Carnahan, and Sean Driscoll responded to 626 Virginia Ave.

Police say Yon approached them with a machete.

After being confronted by police, Yon was shot. Authorities say he refused to drop the machete.

The caller says she would take it all back if she could. She questions the officers' actions that night.

She says she asked Yon to leave because he would not keep the noise down and her two-year-old daughter couldn't sleep.

"He got up in my face, he was calling me names. He flipped over the table and pushed me," she said.

That's when she says everything escalated.

"He was sitting on the couch holding his machete, and still then I wasn't scared for my life because he's family. I would never think he'd do anything to hurt us. He was just depressed and I didn't know what to do," she said.

So she decided to call 911.

"He's getting his machete. He says when the cop shows up, he's going after them," she told the dispatcher.

Six adults and two children in the house all went outside.

When police arrived, she says Yon ran off the porch toward officers with the blade.

"They shot him in his left arm and he backed up and came forward. And they shot him in his right arm," she said. "But they didn't stop. They kept shooting him, and we watched him die."

During a demonstration outside the Kent Police Department Tuesday, protesters held up signs with the number "18", signifying the number of shots police fired at Douglas Yon.

Police have not confirmed the number of shots fired.

The woman who called 911 says she wishes officers had used a Taser or other non-lethal weapon instead.

"I understand, because if someone came after me with a knife, it's natural instinct. But to shoot that many times," she said, crying.

Yon's family says he suffered from depression and bipolar disorder. They say he was in and out of treatment.

For the family member who called 911, she says she will regret it for the rest of her life.

"I can't be right with this in my mind, I don't know how to be right with this," she said. "I'm the one that called, and if I hadn't called he'd still be alive."

The family member says she and Douglas were close, but they fought from time to time like some families do.

Douglas Yon's funeral will be held Wednesday in Cleveland.

BCI and the Portage County Sheriff's Department are conducting the investigation.

The officers involved are on paid administrative leave during the investigation, which is standard procedure.

Officer Benjamin Darrah

  • 15 years of service with the Kent Police Department (Hired August 2000)
  • Former Munroe Falls Police Dept. Officer (for one year)
  • Deputized in 2008 into the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force by U.S. Marshals
  • Former U.S. Marine
  • Received a Letter of Commendation in 2015 after entering a smoke-filled apartment and risking his life
  • Several years during his service with Kent Police, Darrah received a "2" rating out of 5 for his ability to "lead co-workers by example with strong performance and positive attitude"
  • It was noted he would ridicule younger staff on their performance and was vocal of his dislike for certain supervisors

Officer John Poe

  • Eight years of service with the Kent Police Department (Hired Oct. 2007)
  • Currently a K9 Officer with K9 "Iron"
  • Graduate of the University of Akron
  • Perfect Work Attendance recognition for 2014, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008
  • OVI Officer of the Year for 2013, 2011, 2008
  • Two Letters of Commendation (2008, 2009)

Officer Michael Carnahan

  • 1 year of service with the Kent Police Department  (Hired Feb. 2014)
  • 2014 OVI Enforcement Officer of the Year

Officer Sean Driscoll

  • less than 1 year of service with the Kent Police Department (Hired Sept. 2015)

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