Copley officer cleared in shooting of mass killer Michael Hance speaks out for first time

COPLEY, Ohio - In a 20 minute interview, officer Ben Campbell told NewsChannel5's Bob Jones he was scared at times during the events that unfolded that tragic Sunday in August in Copley Township, adding he felt "vulnerable."

"It was scary and I hope I never have to do it again but I'm glad I stepped up to the plate and did what had to be done," Campbell said.

On Wednesday, Campbell was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Summit County Prosecutor's Office for shooting and killing Michael Hance, 51, who went on that shooting rampage through a Copley neighborhood on Aug 7.

Campbell described his encounter with Hance. saying  he fired three shots him from 60 feet away using a rifle. Two bullets struck Hance. But Campbell didn't realize at the time that he hit Hance, as the mass murderer continued running before collapsing. At that point, Campbell thought Hance was surrendering, but then discovered Hance was injured from the gunfire.

Before shooting Hance, Campbell said that he was concerned about his own safety because the police officers were entering an area with an active shooter, whose exact location was unknown.

"At this point, I felt so vulnerable because I didn't know where he was," Campbell said. " I thought he could have circled around a house and got me from behind. It was a horrible feeling of vulnerability."

Campbell, who has two children of his own, was emotional, at times, during the interview and teared up about how sad it was that kids were killed in the rampage.

"I feel 100 percent confident in the decisions I made," he said. "I feel really bad about the kids."

Officer Campbell will be back to work on Saturday, after being placed on paid administrative leave following the incident.

Campbell was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Summit County Prosecutor's Office on Wednesday for shooting and killing Michael Hance, 51, who went on a shooting rampage through a Copley neighborhood on Aug 7.

Hance opened fire on eight people, killing seven of them in the area of Schocalog Road and Goodenough Avenue.

Hance's girlfriend, Rebecca Dieter, is the only survivor.

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