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Man admits stabbing cop, faces up to 11 years in prison

TNS Regional News • Jan 17, 2014 at 11:07 AM

A man who stabbed an officer in the head last year outside the police station pleaded guilty Wednesday while telling the judge medication is controlling his bipolar disorder.

John Heffner, 42, entered a guilty plea to one count of felonious assault on a police officer, a first degree felony. He faces up to 11 years in prison when he is sentenced, which is scheduled for Feb. 20.

Heffner also told the judge the medication does not cloud his mind, and he was entering the plea fully aware of what he was doing.

Heffner previously pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and had sought at least two psychological exams, but the results apparently didn’t come back in his favor. The judge ruled he should stand trial.

The charge was for the March 27 stabbing of Sgt. Dave Gillispie outside the front door to the Lima Police Department on Market Street. Heffner called officers outside and charged once they stepped out. He used a screwdriver to stab Gillispie in the head.

Gillispie managed to draw his weapon despite the injury and fired several shots, striking Heffner twice, to stop the attack. Gillispie was taken to the hospital following the attack. The sergeant did not have a life-threatening injury.

Heffner also made a statement to a detective about the incident. Police officials said Heffner wanted to act in such a way that a policeman would shoot and kill him, a phenomenon known as “suicide by cop.”


By Greg Sowinski - The Lima News, Ohio (MCT)

©2014 The Lima News (Lima, Ohio)

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