Jury finds man guilty of killing Germantown man

  • In US
  • 2022-12-01 21:17:33Z
  • By WHIO

A verdict has been reached in the murder trial of a Dayton man accused of killing a Germantown man earlier this year.

A jury found Christopher Debord guilty on all 16 charges he was facing, including aggravated murder.

News Center 7 was in court Thursday for closing arguments and the verdict in Debord's case.

Debord, 27, was indicted in early May on 16 counts, including four counts of aggravated murder, two counts of murder, two counts of aggravated robbery, two counts of aggravated burglary, three counts of tampering with evidence, one count of felonious assault, grand theft of a motor vehicle and one count of having weapons while under a disability, according to court documents.

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The charges were in connection to the death of Joshua Shortt, 29, of Germantown. Shortt was found dead by a family member in the basement of a house in the 300 block of North Main Street on February 15.

News Center 7 previously reported that a 911 caller, who identified themselves as Shortt's mother, reported finding Shrott dead at a bloody scene. The woman reported to police she was last in contact with Shortt the evening of February 13 and went to the house to check on him.

Police who arrived to investigate found him on the basement floor of the house with a gunshot wound to his head, officers detail in the court documents also obtained in a News Center 7 public records request. Shortt was covered in a blanket and there was no gun seen in the immediate area near the victim, officers said.

The Montgomery County Coroner's office determined that Shortt was also shot in the chest and upper right arm, according to an affidavit and statement of facts.

Court documents stated an SUV, a 2001 red Honda CR-V, was stolen from the house. Investigators later found that a Walther Pellet Gun CP99, small safe with at least $2,000 in cash and illegal narcotics were also missing from the residence.

The SUV, owned by Shortt, was later recovered at the Clark gas station in the 3400 block of East Third Street in Dayton on the evening of February 15, according to court records and a Dayton police incident report.

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Court documents showed that Debord was driving the SUV at the time, but ran away on foot.

On February 16, a neighbor of Debord's on Blackwood Avenue in Dayton called Germantown Police and said the they had previously seen Debord cleaning out a red Honda CRV. The neighbor said they saw his trash full and on the curb, which the neighbor deemed as unusual, according to court documents. Officers then conducted a trash pull and found pieces of evidence, including three bottles of bleach and cleansers, a white t-shirt with possible blood stains on it, a tire cover belonging to a Honda CRV and a receipt from the Chick-Fil-A at the Mall at Fairfield Commons dated for February 15.

Officers later obtained security video from the Chick-Fil-A on the date and time that was shown on the receipt and found video of Debord purchasing food, according to the statement of facts.

Police were also conducting surveillance on Debord's apartment on Blackwood Avenue in Dayton and conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle leaving the residence. A female driver said that she had been staying with Debord at a local hotel and told police she saw him keep a gun inside a fanny pack in the room.

A search warrant of the hotel room was obtained and police found a Walther Pellet Gun CP99 in a fanny pack. The gun was the same kind missing from Shortt's residence.

Police executed a search warrant on the Blackwood Avenue residence and found a green Crown Royal bag, believed to have belonged to Shortt, with numerous drugs inside. Court records showed that burned documents belonging to Shortt were found in a fire pit outside the front door. A spare tire for the stolen SUV was also located.

Debord was arrested by his parole officer on February 18 for violations. While being interviewed by police, he said he was at Shortt's house on February 13. He claimed he was moving in with Shortt.

Debord told officers that he upstairs when he heard five gunshots. When he went downstairs, he found Shortt choking on his own blood. He said did nothing to help the victim and he then collected marijuana and the keys to the CRV and left. He denied taking a gun, but admitted that the pellet gun found in the hotel belonged to Shortt. Court documents showed that Debord also admitted to burning some of Shortt's property and that he went to the gas station to get gasoline to burn the SUV.

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A second search was done at the Blackwood Avenue residence and police found three 9mm shell casings in the yard. The casings were sent to the Miami Valley Regional Crime Lab and were analyzed and compared to casings found underneath Shortt. Results showed that all casings matched and were determined to have been fired from the same unknown weapon.

Police were later notified to two jail inmates who had information regarding the Germantown murder. Both claimed Debord had admitted to killing Shortt. One inmate said Debord admitting to killing a man in a "robbery gone bad."

"Inmate #2 said that Debord was bragging and telling this story to all who would listen inside the jail and that Debord was acting as if this was no big deal," according to the statement of faces.

Debord will return to court for sentencing on Dec. 15. He will remain held in the Montgomery County Jail without bond ahead of his sentencing.


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