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Ohio shooter's parents apologise for 'insensitive' obituary that didn't mention 'terrible tragedy'

Nine people were killed in the mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio earlier this month.

Connor Betts
Connor Betts
Image: Dayton Police Department via AP

THE PARENTS OF the Ohio shooter who killed nine people earlier this month in a mass shooting have apologised for releasing an “insensitive” obituary that failed to mention the “terrible tragedy”.

The obituary described Connor Betts (24) as a “funny, articulate and intelligent man with striking blue eyes and a kind smile” before it was taken down yesterday by a funeral home in their hometown of Bellbrook, Ohio.

Stephen and Moira Betts have since issued a statement saying the wording of the obituary was “insensitive in not acknowledging the terrible tragedy that he created”. 

“In their grief, they presented the son that they knew, which in no way reduces the horror of his last act. We are deeply sorry,” the statement said.

Betts opened fire in a popular entertainment district in Dayton. Police shot him as he neared a crowded bar.

It’s not known whether Betts targeted his 22-year-old sister, Megan. They had spent an hour together at a bar in the same area before the shooting.

The family will be holding private memorial services for both of their children.

Cocaine in system

The coroner said Betts had a pipe device and cocaine with him, and cocaine, alcohol and an antidepressant in his blood.

The preliminary autopsy findings also reported that police stopped Betts with at least two dozen gunshots that hit him at gaps in his body armor.

“This incident involved an intense firefight that is rarely seen other than combat and an active-shooter incident,” Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl said.

“The officers were confronted with a moving shooter wearing body armor, actively executing victims with an AR-15 type weapon and high capacity magazines.”

The coroner said police gunfire hit two people. One of them died, but the coroner said the gunman, not police, fired the lethal round.

Ethan Kollie, a longtime friend of Betts who told investigators he bought the body armour, a 100-round magazine and a key part of the gun Betts used in the attack appeared in court today after a judge balked at releasing him from jail.

Authorities have said there’s no indication Kollie knew Betts was planning the mass shooting. 

However, Kollie is charged with lying on a federal firearms form while buying a pistol not used in the shooting.

Prosecutors said Kollie first spoke with investigators just hours after the shooting.

Kollie’s lawyer wants him released on house arrest.

A judge has been reviewing where Kollie would stay under house arrest with electronic monitoring and other conditions.

Includes reporting by Associated Press

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