Resident asks Vandalia to revoke gun range permit saying operation is “negligent and haphazard”

VANDALIA — The Vandalia resident who sued the Miami Valley Shooting Grounds over what he claims is unsafe shooting practices has now asked the City of Vandalia to revoke the shooting range’s permit.

In a letter dated September 14, James Hill, the attorney for Jamie Spencer, requested that the permit be “immediately revoked” because the range is in violation of its permit.

That permit, issued in 2007 by Vandalia Police Chief Douglas Knight, stipulated that Dana Tackett, owner of the shooting range, could discharge “any air gun, shotgun, revolver, pistol, or other lawful firearm” in a “lawful and safe manner.”

It also specified that weapons may only be fired in an east to west direction while using a 50-foot hill on the western side of the property as a backstop as well as “take all necessary measures and provide supervision sufficient to ensure that projectiles are confined to the property.”

The permit says that it can be revoked at any time.

Spencer says it should be and claims the range is in violation due to lack of supervision, shooting in directions other than east-west, bullets exiting the property, and because the shooting range is being operated in a “negligent and haphazard manner.”

Spencer cites reports completed by the Vandalia Division of Police as proof.

In a report completed by the Vandalia Division of Police on September 7, officers observed shooters on a range running north-south as well as bullets landing on Unibilt’s property at 7731 Johnson Station Road. In that report, a Vandalia Police Officer noted “several rounds whiz by us” and stated “we both knew it was not safe where we were.”

Sgt. Todd Flynn said in the report “it was obvious to me that the shooters were a threat to public safety and not in compliance with the permit issued by Chief (Douglas) Knight.

They then ordered the range shut down and notified Tackett that he must be in compliance with the permit.

Previously, in a report dated August 27, 2017, police noted that there were no range officers present despite all booths being filled with shooters.

Hill has provided this newspaper with exhibits filed with the lawsuit which include photos and video, but their source has not been able to be verified at this time.

Vandalia City Manager had no comment on Wednesday afternoon other than the matter was “under review.”

The Vandalia Drummer News will continue to update this story as it develops.
Jamie Spencer also suing gun range in Common Pleas Court


By Darrell Wacker



Reach Darrell Wacker at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaDrummer.