Uniontown Police Sgt. David White is home after more than three weeks at Summa Akron City Hospital after being shot four times in the line of duty.
On Sunday, July 9th, 2017, Sgt. White and another Uniontown Officer responded to a domestic violence call on Lela Avenue. The suspect, Ryan Probst, opened fire on Sgt. White and his partner, striking White four times. Officers returned fire, killing Probst on the scene. Sgt. White was rushed to Akron City Hospital where over the course of the next few days he underwent multiple surgeries.
After weeks of recovery and rehabilitation, White was discharged from Akron City.
Alongside his wife, Sgt. White entered the lobby of the Critical Care building at Akron City, welcomed by a host of fellow officers, friends, family, Akron City staff, and the media. A round of applause welcome Sgt. White as he sat at the table to give a prepared statement.
Sgt. White, 59, thanked his family, his department, and the charity and thoughtfulness of local churches, banks, and strangers, both local and from across the nation.
Sitting next to Dr. Joshua Nash of Akron City, Sgt. White boasted the care he received from the minute he was taken through the doors of the Emergency Department to that very moment. "Everyone here has been superb, all the way down to the janitorial service... I can't say enough for them." Sgt. White added, "If it wasn't for God, and if it wasn't for Summa, I wouldn't be here."
Asked whether he'd thought about returning to work, Sgt. White responded, "I haven't thought about getting back to work. My doctors said I'm probably 8 months to a year away from that... There are a lot more immediate things I have thought about aside from going to work." As for the first thing he'll do now that he's returning home, Sgt. White said he'll pet his dog.
At about 10:16 p.m Sunday, two Uniontown Police Officers responded to a domestic violence call at 10599 Lela Avenue NW. When the officers arrived, the suspect, 28-year-old Ryan Probst opened fire on them. Both officers returned fire, killing the suspect, but not before Sergeant David White with UPD was hit four times.
(Ryan Probst, 28 - Photo Credit: Stark County Sheriff's Office)
After the shooting, the officers called for back-up and the Stark County Sheriff's office, along with other Uniontown Police officers arrived on the scene. Sgt. White was transported to an Akron-area hospital. He had surgery at about 5:30 a.m. Monday and has since been listed in stable condition.
During a press conference Monday morning, Stark County Sheriff George Maier noted that this was not Probst's first encounter with the law. He'd been arrested for violent offenses in the past and had a long RAP sheet. Sheriff Maier added that this wasn't the first domestic incident that they were called for at the home on Lela.
Both Sgt. Smith and the other officer involved in the shooting are on paid administrative leave while the investigation continues.
Sgt. Smith is a 25-year veteran of law enforcement and had been with the Uniontown Police Department since 2002.