Suspect In Bluffton Officer’s Death In Court For Arraignment

The man authorities say was driving the stolen car that hit and killed Bluffton Police Officer Dominic Francis on March 31st appeared in Hancock County Common Pleas Court on Thursday for his arraignment.

Emin Johnson, 20, of Euclid, pleaded not guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide, involuntary manslaughter and other charges at the arraignment.

His bond of $500,000 that was set in Findlay Municipal Court earlier was carried over.

A pre-trial hearing has been set for May 13th.

A backseat passenger, 21-year-old Zachary Love, was also arraigned.

He pleaded not guilty to charges including the improper handling of a firearm in a vehicle and receiving stolen property

A video arraignment was being set up for a third suspect, Dante Tate, 19, who’s still in Medina County where he was apprehended.

The charges he’s facing include grand theft of a motor vehicle and receiving stolen property.

Authorities say the three were in a stolen car that was fleeing from police on Interstate 75 southbound around 2:30 a.m. on March 31st that struck and killed Bluffton police officer Dominic Francis.

Officer Francis was placing stop sticks on the highway in an effort to end the pursuit.

The three fled on foot and one stole a car and was later arrested in northeast Ohio in Elyria.

Another was arrested near where the car was stolen in Hancock County and the third suspect was arrested that afternoon in Hancock County.

Johnson and Love are being held at the Hancock County Jail while Tate was still being held in northeast Ohio where he was apprehended.

The Fort Findlay FOP Lodge 20 Foundation has established an official fundraising drive authorized by the family of officer Dominic Francis.

Donations can be made online at and checks can be mailed to Fort Findlay FOP Lodge 20, P.O. Box 1335, Findlay, OH 45840.