Canfield man charged with assaulting Ohio University staff member

WKBN confirmed Monday that the man is from Canfield

James Howard arrested for assault in Athens Ohio.

ATHENS, Ohio (WCMH)–Ohio University police announced they arrested a 25-year-old student on several charges after he allegedly assaulted a staff member at Bird Arena.

James D. Howard, of Canfield, was charged with burglary, a second-degree felony, and weapons under disability, a third-degree felony. He was enrolled as a student, police say, but withdrew from classes Monday.

Police say Howard reportedly entered a staff member’s office at Bird Arena around noon on Monday, shoved the staff member, and “attempted to strike him with a closed fist.”

They say he then left campus. Police were later told that Howard planned to buy a gun. OUPD obtained warrants for his arrest and notified surrounding law enforcement agencies for help locating him.

Late in the afternoon, Howard reportedly attempted to purchase a firearm in Logan. Deputies from the Hocking County Sheriff’s Office found him in Logan, where he was buying ammunition for a shotgun he had.

He was arrested and transported to the Southeast Ohio Regional Jail, where he is being held on a $35,000 bond.

Police say the burglary charge stems from his alleged assault of a staff member. The weapons under disability charge is because Howard was in possession of a firearm after being previously admitted to a mental health facility. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 13 years in prison and a $25,000 fine.

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