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Thomas ‘Tommy’ Hartless: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

thomas hartless

Thomas Hartless mugshot.

Thomas Hartless was identified as the active shooter who took hostages in Kirkersville, Ohio, shot two female nursing home employees to death, and then murdered the village police chief in the street.

Although some media gave his name as “Tommy Heartless,” ABC6 reported the spelling was Thomas Hartless. He was also known as Tommy Hartless.

Hartless, 43, of Utica, Ohio, had been released early from prison by a judge after a conviction for abducting a previous girlfriend.

Ohio’s governor called the shooting which killed Police Chief Steven Eric DiSario and two employees of Pine Kirk Care Center “horrific.” DiSario, 36, leaves behind six children and a pregnant wife.

The shooting occurred in a tight-knit village of about 500 people located near Columbus, Ohio. The motive is not yet clear, but it may have a nexus to domestic violence. Hartless had a history of violence against women, according to The Columbus Post-Dispatch, and he was given several plea deals.

Here’s what you need to know:


1. The Gunman Shot Two Women Inside a Nursing Home Where His Girlfriend Worked

The call about the shooting came in early at around 7:30 a.m. May 12 at Pine Kirk Care Center. The situation was under control by 10 a.m., reported Fox 8.

Sarah Sims, 23, who works at the nursing home, told WHIO-TV that she was in the basement when she heard “loud bangs.” She barricaded the door, called 911, and was advised to stay “calm,” the television station reports.

Some of the nursing home residents also hid during the shooting, CNN reported.

Upstairs, the gunman had shot two women who worked for the nursing home, police said. According to NBC4i, Hartless did not live in Kirkersville but “his girlfriend worked at the nursing home where the shooting happened.” It’s not clear whether she was one of the victims.

“Two nursing home workers were…found dead,” NBC News confirmed.

The gunman was found dead inside the nursing home, CNN reported. It’s believed the shooter shot himself, according to 10News.

Peter Van Runkle, who leads a state trade association representing nursing homes, told the Dispatch that the nursing home helps “the forgotten members of society.”

“They provide them with a small environment that’s less institutional than some facilities might be,” he said to the Dispatch. “They do a good job of taking care of a niche clientele.”


2. DiSario Was ‘Ambushed’ & Was a Father of Six Who Was New to the Job

DiSario was ambushed by the shooter, according to 10TV.

The police chief was killed when he responded to a call about the nursing home. However, investigators said in a news conference that they believe the gunman shot DiSario first, and then went into the nursing home and fatally shot the two workers.

“Sheriff’s deputies arriving to back up DiSario found the chief shot in the alley,” CNN reported. “When they entered the nursing home, the gunman and the workers were dead.”

According to NBC News, DiSario “responded to a report of a man with a gun around 7:45 a.m.” and then “engaged with the alleged shooter,” radioing that “he had the suspect in his sights.’

However, arriving officers found DiSario lying in the street.

He leaves behind a pregnant wife and a large family.

NBC reported that DiSario “was a father of six with a child ‘on the way,’ and had only been the police chief for three weeks.” DiSario was so new to the job that the police website still lists the outgoing chief.

According to The Dayton Daily News, DiSario and his wife, Aryn, “are a blended family each with kids from previous relationships. They have one child together and Aryn is pregnant, ready to give birth any day now.”

Both DiSario and his wife had photos of them as a couple as their profile pictures on Facebook.

The newspaper reported that Aryn DiSario called a relative “in fear because she knew her husband was on duty and couldn’t get any information on the shooting.”

According to WHIO, DiSario “engaged the gunman near the rear of the nursing home.”

A person who lives near the nursing home told ABC6 that he heard “multiple shots” ring out.


3. A Neighbor Wrote on Facebook That Hartless Was a ‘Violent Man’ Who Was Released Early From Prison on Domestic Violence Charges

One of Hartless’ neighbors wrote on Facebook that he was a “violent man” and expressed “grave fear for my life and that of my daughter.” It was not immediately clear when the message was left.

Kevin Landers, of 10TV, reported that neighbors said Hartless should have served more time for a past domestic violence incident. The Columbus Post-Dispatch reported that Hartless “had at least two felony cases…involving violence. They concluded with Hartless serving prison time, but he was released early by a judge and then successfully completed probation.”

WCLT reported in 2009 that Thomas Hartless, of Utica, was “indicted for kidnapping a woman during an incident in Knox County.” Then 35, he was accused of assaulting an ex-girlfriend and binding her wrists and ankles with duct tape, according to WCLT. He was being held in the Licking County Jail on a probation violation, the story reported.

The Post-Dispatch reported that Hartless received a plea deal, in which “the most serious charge — kidnapping, that could have sent him to prison for up to eight years — and domestic violence were dropped.” He pleaded guilty to abduction and aggravated menacing in 2010, but two days before was accused of a separate felonious assault, the newspaper reported.

According to the Post-Dispatch, despite the new charge, Hartless received another plea deal and was ultimately sentenced on both charges to serve two years in prison (it would have been more but the judge ran some charges concurrently.” The newspaper reported that Common Pleas Court Judge Otho Eyste let Hartless out after eight months.


4. Hartless Took Random Hostages into the Woods During the Incident

Shortly after news of the shooting flew around Twitter, it was reported that the shooter was “neutralized” or down.

However, before that report, a tense situation unfolded in which the “gunman for a period of time prior to the shooting did have two hostages in a wooded area that were not harmed,” reported WHIO.

Attorney General Mike DeWine said Hartless “was hiding in some woods near the funeral home and took two passersby hostage for a brief time.” His car was found in a nearby truck stop, reported WDTN-TV.

Lt. Robert Sellers of the Ohio Highway Patrol told The Newark Advocate by late morning: “There is no threat to the public. The situation has concluded.”

John Kasich, the governor of Ohio, released a statement as the tragedy unfolded.

“Shocked & pained by the horrific shooting in Kirkersville, ask for prayers for those injured. Grateful for law enforcement’s quick response,” the Ohio governor wrote on Twitter.

Kasich posted again after DiSario’s name was released, saying, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God.”

According to his Facebook page, DiSario studied at DeVry University, went to Washington Senior High, and was born in Ohio.


5. The Local Elementary School Was Locked Down

Although it appears students there were never at actual risk, as a precaution, the Kirkersville Elementary School was locked down.

Parents were informed they could pick up their children at a middle school, Fox 8 reports.

The school spokesman told The Newark Advocate that “all the students at Kirkersville Elementary were on the buses when the situation started and diverted to Watkins Middle School.”

The school was closed for the day after the shooting.

According to CBS News, “The shooting closed down the main street in the village, which was flooded with police officers from several surrounding agencies and with ambulances.”

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32 comments

  1. WOW another shooting in the good old US of A. Don’t worry about Islamic militants, you guys do a great job of killing each other. Worlds policeman. Not in my world.

    • “released early from prison ”
      sounds like the democrat ran chicago where felons are released after serving 1/5 of their time for violent crimes, then go out on the streets to kill other black/brown people.
      If one overlays the national ‘murder map’ on the ‘democrat/republican voter’ map of the US, what is striking is that the areas that indeed have “murder problems” all democrat ran cities/counties.

      So if one wants to avoid the “murder problem”, the most sure fire way is to avoid democrat ran cities.
      The second best way is if you married/had a relationship with an abusive partner, especially one that has a proven record of it and gone to prison for it, get a firearm so you can protect yourself. If you don’t want to protect yourself, you might at least protect the people around you by protecting yourself.

      Avoid democrats and protect yourself from your bad choices.

      • Some felons are likely released early in Illinois, just like every other state. Violent felons aren’t released in Chicago after 1/5 of their sentence you lying sack of *hit, nor are most felons released after completing 1/5 of their sentence. Especially violent felons. Owning a firearm increases your chances of dying from a firearm. Look it up, you intellectual coward. Regarding Democratically ran cities, people in large population centers don’t trust Republicans to run their city. Sorry pal, if you’re such a snowflake that you want to stay in the burbs or rural area, that’s your right. Your chances of dying in an auto accident in the burbs and rural areas are higher than being gunned down in a large city. Most violent crimes in large cities are among people who know one another. Alcohol is largely involved in many cases. Lastly if the urban areas got the financing they needed from the state to properly fund schools, community centers, etc., crime wouldn’t be as bad. You really are an idiot.

        • “Some felons are likely released early in Illinois, just like every other state.”
          So, then why is chicago so different from “every other state”? Even comparing the criminal cesspools that are democrat ran cities, chicago stands out.
          I don’t know what is harder for leftist cult members–to not be in violent denial, or to not lie. That’s a tough one for leftist democrats as both are so ingrained to being a leftist democrat.

          “A five-time convicted felon, free on parole since January 13, is now charged with robbing a Lakeview woman….21-year-old Jamal Dumas of Mount Prospect pushed the 28-year-old woman into a gangway…pulled out a handgun and forced the woman to turn over her purse before fleeing”.

          Wow, 21 years old with five felonies? What year is this? yeah, 2017:
          a known gang member:
          • Four years for being a felon in possession of a weapon in 2013
          • Five years for possessing a firearm with a defaced serial number in 2014
          • Another five years for being a felon in possession of a firearm in 2014.

          Dumas also received 30 months probation for a 2012 Evanston robbery, according to court records.

          2013 sentenced for five years, but committed two felonies in 2014?
          2013 + 8 is 2018, no?
          you leftist democrats clearly are numbers challenged, so do the math and get back to us on that one example. There are many, many more, but one would actually have to ‘want’ to look.

      • Republican Governor of OH. Republican County. Don;t make comments when you have no idea what you are saying. It makes you look weak and scared.

      • True, black and brown people are killing each other off at record rates every year. That’s why the democrat party has to continually have their black/brown properties focus on white people (specifically republcians) being to blame for everything as if they stopped and looked around, they’d realize they have been governed by democrats for more than a half a century, some places more than a century.

        But black people have always been the property of democrats and the democrats don’t want to lose those again.

    • This is a sad story, yes. And since it began how many blacks have shot other blacks, in Chicago, alone? Year over year, it averages out at one every 3 hours.

      • Festus, that is a normal everyday occurrence to be expected. When a white guy goes crazy (which is quite uncommon like this) that makes the news. There is a double standard where white people and orientals are expected to behave much better.

        • Michelle, You’re a moron. There is a mass shooting by whites on average more than once a day. (NY Times) Yeah, shoot up a nursing home where elderly people live, and it’s going to make the news…duh How about researching your claims before posting them. Or are you just an intellectual slouch, and prefer lying like your conservative talking heads?

          • “mass shootings”?
            can you liberal democrats ever tell the truth? At least you aren’t being violent here, so this is a good step forward for you kid.
            You didn’t know anything about chicago and chimed in on it, now you’re chiming in on new york?

            So again leftist kid, let me help you:
            As of today, 1154 people have been shot in corrupt, democrat ran chicago Il.

            95.5% of those shot in democrat ran chicago are black and brown people.
            87% of those shootings there were no arrests, so the race of the shooter is unknown.
            Of those arrested:
            10.8% are black/brown
            2.5% every other race.

            sorry to keep ruining your propaganda parade kid. Don’t get into a rage.

  2. We need to make all schools into gun free zones and take away the handguns like they did in Australia!

    Handguns and assault rifles such as the AR-51.

  3. Hey pigs just wait for urs coz we gonna start kafiruns INSHA ALLAH and even take off trumpigs head BI IDHIN ALLAH