Butler Co. man charged in connection with gun used in Del Rio shooting death

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – A Butler County man has been charged with lying on ATF forms to illegally purchase the firearm used in killing Dayton Police Detective and DEA Task Force Officer Jorge Del Rio on Nov. 4 during the execution of a search warrant on Ruskin Road in Dayton.

Delano Wells, 50, of Trenton, was charged by criminal complaint on November 5 with making false statements on a federal firearms form. According to court documents, three firearms were recovered from the scene on Ruskin Road on November 4: two pistols with extended magazines and an AR-style weapon.


ATF was called to assist with tracing the three firearms and an urgent trace was requested for all three firearms recovered in the shooting.

The government alleged Wells purchased all three firearms. ATF traced one alleged pistol purchase to August 29, 67 days prior to the shooting, and another alleged pistol purchase to September 9, 57 days prior. Records indicate Wells purchased at least six other firearms in August and September.

According to the affidavit, Wells told ATF agents he purchased the weapons in Middletown for a friend. Wells allegedly received cash for the cost of the firearms with an additional profit of $25 to $30 per firearm. Wells allegedly lied on ATF Form 4473 for each purchase he made, by indicating “yes” he was purchasing the firearm for himself and not for anyone else. In reality, it is alleged he purchased the firearms to sell to his friend.

“The message we want to make loud and clear is that if you provide firearms to drug dealers and convicted felons you will be held responsible for their actions,” said U.S. Attorney David M. DeVillers. “There are significant sentencing enhancements for firearms provided by straw purchasers used to commit crimes and we will seek those enhancements to the fullest.” 

Wells made his initial appearance on November 6.  No additional court dates are currently set. This investigation remains ongoing.

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