Man convicted of attempting to kill police in Steuben County motel standoff sentenced to 115 years

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Photo courtesy of the Steuben County District Attorney

ANGOLA, Indiana (WANE) A man convicted of attempting to murder police officers during a standoff at a Fremont, Indiana motel in 2018 was sentenced to 115 years on Monday by a Steuben County judge.

In August, a jury found Joshua A. Kelley, 39, guilty of several counts relating to the incident at the Travelers Inn on June 14, 2018.

According to court documents, police were dispatched to the motel after receiving a 911 call from a woman who whispered, “I’m at the Travelers Inn and there’s a dead girl in the bathroom. The woman then hung up and called back a few minutes later with the message: “At the Travelers Inn in Fremont. There’s a dead girl in the bathroom.

After arriving at the motel, officers proceeded to Room 12 and saw that the bathroom door was closed, according to the affidavit. When the door was opened, officers were confronted by Kelley, who had a handgun. An officer said Kelley pointed the gun in her face. The officers then backed away and that’s when Kelley shot them.

Emergency response teams established a perimeter around the motel and called hostage negotiators who contacted Kelley.

During the standoff, officers twice fired pepper spray into the room. After several hours, Kelley left the room and was taken into custody. He was treated on site for exposure to pepper spray.

In an interview with police, Kelley said he made meth in his truck parked at the hotel. He also admitted to pointing a .380 at an officer’s head and firing shots from the front window when pepper spray was thrown into the room.

He was found guilty of:

  • Two counts of attempted murder of police officers
  • Two counts of possession of methamphetamine in possession of a handgun
  • Manufacture of methamphetamine
  • Point a loaded gun at a policeman
  • Gun theft
  • Possession of a handgun without a license


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