TV show to feature Shelby County Sheriff’s Office

Episode of body cam incident premieres Tuesday

By Sheryl Roadcap -

SIDNEY — The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office will be featured in the next episode, Tuesday, Dec. 18, of Investigation Discovery’s all-new series, “Body Cam.”

The episode shows events from the 2016 carjacking, chase and arrest of Travis Wickline from Charleston, West Virginia, in Shelby County.

The episode, titled “Disorderly Conduct,” will premiere Tuesday, at 10 p.m., on Investigation Discovery.

“Body Cam” is described by Investigation Discovery as an action-packed show that utilizes point-of-view body camera footage from officers in the field to show the danger and heroism that law enforcement face on a daily basis­. The show profiles multiple stories per hour.

“We are very excited for Joel (the Shelby County deputy featured) and the fact that his story will get out there. And the fact that it will shed some light on law enforcement and the dangers we face,” Shelby County Chief Deputy Sheriff Jim Frye said.

According to an Investigation Discovery press release, Tuesday’s episode is about Shelby County Deputy Joel Howell’s receiving a call about a violent carjacking, then quickly finding both the stolen vehicle and the suspect nearby.

At first, the release said, Wickline appears to comply with Howell’s instructions but then “suddenly turns and fires six bullets straight at him before making his second getaway of the night.” But this time, Shelby County deputies are “right behind him, racing to stop the gunman before he turns the gun on anybody else.”

Frye said, “What we were amazed about, because we train and train, was when we realized with Joel by his body camera when we first reviewed the cam … he was on the passenger’s side (of his sheriff’s cruiser). We had thought he was still standing at the driver’s side door (based on his cruiser’s dash cam footage).”

Frye said the suspect was shooting at the cruiser’s driver’s side door, thinking a deputy would be standing there, but the suspect could not see him because of the bright spotlight and flashing lights coming from the cruiser.

“Joel was taught to move — because we train and train — Joel was on the passenger’s side,” Frye said.

Frye highly praised Howell’s actions and professionalism during and after the incident.

“When I got to the scene, I took his pistol and asked how many rounds he shot. Joel said three. I said, ‘There’s no way he only shot three rounds.’ But sure enough, he only shot three. Joel was so calm — very, very calm after it occurred. He stayed calm through the whole time and all the way to today,” Frye said, “When I asked why he only shot three rounds, he said, ‘I knew a passenger was in the car, but didn’t know her total involvement and didn’t want her to get hit.’”

Henry Schleiff, group president of Investigation Discovery, Travel Channel, American Heroes Channel and Destination America said in a press release, “Body cameras are meant to provide accountability and, while such footage oftentimes faces public scrutiny, we hope that this series will shed some further light on the dangers that officers regularly face in their daily effort to keep us safe. Indeed, by showing actual footage of these harrowing encounters, ‘Body Cam’ not only offers an intimate and intense look at law enforcement, but also provides the viewer with a visceral sense of what life is like for those who must, on occasion, risk their lives to protect ours.”

Investigation Discovery is Channel 66 on Spectrum Cable; 84 or 584 at NKTelco for customers with cable boxes.

Episode of body cam incident premieres Tuesday

By Sheryl Roadcap

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.