Ohio Officer Fatally Shot During Training, Investigation Rules Homicide

An Ohio state employee is under investigation for reckless homicide after the shooting death of Lt. Rodney Osborne, a prison officer, during a training session at a firing range. The incident occurred on April 9 at the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction’s (ODRC) training facility in Orient, Pickaway County. Although the employee’s name has been withheld in the official report, special operations commander David Pearson has been placed on administrative leave pending further investigation. Pearson joined the ODRC as a correction officer in May 2005 and assumed his current role in January 2021. The Ohio State Highway Patrol, responsible for investigating incidents on state property, has released a redacted report omitting specific witness statements but noted the presence of several witnesses. These witnesses have been advised not to speak to the media. Lt. Osborne, who was 43 and a member of the special operations team at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, died from a gunshot wound to his upper chest, based on an autopsy. He is survived by his wife and three children.

Lt. Rodney Osborne

After Lt. Rodney Osborne was shot, his colleagues administered CPR and rushed him to Mount Carmel Grove City hospital in a pickup truck, where he was declared dead shortly after noon. Annette Chambers-Smith, the Director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (ODRC), described the incident as a “tragic accident” in a statement released on the day of the shooting. The ODRC has yet to release several records requested by The Dispatch, but they have stated that the personnel files for Osborne and David Pearson will be made available as soon as they are prepared.

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