Newcomerstown, OH — On April 11, 2017, Newcomerstown police launched a massive statewide “Blue Alert” manhunt for two suspects who allegedly opened fire on officer Brian Eubanks. Departments statewide combed the streets looking for two men in a black Geo Tracker, one wearing a red sweatshirt and the other wearing a lime green shirt. One was in a tactical vest and they were armed with a shotgun and handguns, the attorney general’s office said. Authorities even had a suspect’s name, Chaz Gillilan.
Social media took to sharing the story and prayers were sent the officer’s way. Local media kept the town updated on Eubanks’ status, and the town was relieved when they found out he would make a full recovery.
But everyone — the police departments, the state politicians, the media, and the citizens — had all been duped.
Chaz Gillilan never shot at Eubanks, nor did the other mythical suspect. No, Eubanks shot Eubanks. That’s right. The blue alert, the statewide manhunt, the deprivation of Chaz Gillilan’s rights, all of these happened because officer Eubanks shot himself — in an attempt to collect workers compensation — and then fabricated an elaborate story to cover it up.
A week after the “shooting,” Eubanks, 37, admitted to police that he lied about it after they brought him in for further questioning about the incident. He was then charged with inducing panic, making false alarms, tampering with evidence, forgery and workers compensation fraud.
He was found guilty, and this month, he was sentenced to a measly 90 days in jail—a slap on the wrist.
According to Cleveland 19, Eubanks received 90 days in jail, a $2,500 fine and 500 hours of community service for shooting himself, causing a massive lockdown, lying to countless fellow cops and reporters, and framing an innocent man for a crime he did not commit.
Prosecutor Christian Sticken noted that he went too far in naming a suspect — a real, live innocent person, reports Cleveland 19.
“He didn’t have to do that. He gave such detail, what clothing he was wearing. Things that were hard to see, they became suspicious,” said Sticken.
According to FOX 8, the sheriff’s office found Eubanks’ statements about the incident contradictory after speaking with witnesses. Investigators used an Automatic License Plate reader on Eubanks’ vehicle to track down witnesses that passed his car at the time he told police he was pursuing the gunmen, the station reported.
One key component to Eubanks’ web of lies was that the Geo Tracker had no license plate. If it had a license plate, it would’ve been picked up by the ominous license plate scanners on his police vehicle.
Not even Eubanks anticipated the police state power his vehicle possessed. Apparently, police cruisers scan and maintain a log of every single car’s license plate that passes it. Innocent or not, you are entered into a database for simply driving by a cop. But that’s another story altogether.
When police began tracking down all the people who drove by Eubanks at the time he claimed two meth heads shot him, none of them could corroborate his fictional account.
When police asked him why it was that none of the witnesses they tracked down saw anything remotely close to what he claimed happened, Eubanks was brought in and admitted to making up the lie.
What happened to Eubanks for weaving a web of lies, falsifying police reports that sparked a statewide manhunt for two non-existent suspects, and tarnishing the name of an innocent man? Well, naturally, he was sent home to his family.
Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH
As the Free Thought Project has previously reported, police officers shooting themselves and blaming others is not so rare. In fact, as we reported at the end of 2015, five cops in only a three-month period, in different departments across the country, all faked being shot and then blamed the shootings on non-existent assailants.
Like Eubanks, their false stories were then picked up in the media, or by their own departments, and used to push the idea that cops in America are under attack. Not only were these stories used to propagandize consumers of mainstream media, but massive manhunts ensued and innocent people locked down as state resources were tyrannically squandered on a wild goose chase.
One officer, in particular, Lt. Joe Gliniewicz, went to the ultimate length to make his fake shooting look like a war on cops when he actually killed himself in September 2015. An entire town was subsequently placed on lockdown and residents were subject to a brief period of martial law as Gliniewicz’s brothers in blue searched for three non-existent suspects. Gliniewicz was a criminal cop who was using the war on cops as a means of covering up his nefarious history.
Only after he was publicly outed as a criminal cop did any of Gliniewicz’s fellow officers refer to him as something other than a ‘hero.’
A month later, England Police Department Sgt. David Houser faked being shot during a traffic stop in Arkansas. Another statewide manhunt was launched for a non-existent “Hispanic man.” Two weeks later, Houser caved to pressure and confessed to shooting himself.
Before that, it was reported that veteran police officer Terry Smith was shot in the back by an unknown assailant, and Black Lives Matter protesters were implicated. However, the Houston Police Department found that it was actually his partner, Gregory Hudson who shot Smith.
In September 2015, Officer Bryan Johnson crashed his police cruiser into a tree. To cover up his terrible driving, Johnson then fired several shots into his wrecked car and then radioed into the station, claiming he’d been a victim of the war on cops. Yet another massive manhunt was launched in search of a fake shooter.
Commerce City Police Officer Kevin Lord was also arrested in 2015 after it was revealed he faked being shot at during a traffic stop. Lord claimed he was shot at close range while making a traffic stop in the 9700 block of Peoria Street. His bullet-proof vest was credited with saving his life.
Whether or not Eubanks was actually suicidal remains a mystery. However, suicide is no joke among cops. The public must realize the dire situation and extreme scope of the mental health epidemic currently facing law enforcement. There’s an extremely high rate of suicide, a domestic violence crisis and much higher rates of addiction among police forces than the general public.
That being said, however, there are also cops looking to get a paid vacation — and a superficial wound to the arm, while blaming it on some meth heads, is an easy way to get there.