Sheriff’s office investigating “Shovel Girl” video


A viral video depicting a girl being struck in the head by a shovel during what appears to be a fight has gained national attention for some local teenagers and triggered an investigation by the Miami County Sheriff’s Office.

The Miami County Sheriff’s Office is questioning the teens involved to determine if it was real or a hoax, according to Sheriff’s Major Steve Lord.

It’s real, according to Josh Officer, the 14-year-old Tipp City teen who recorded the May 4th incident with his cell phone.

“It was real fight. People were thinking it was fake and stuff on the Dr. Drew Show. It was completely real. They have been wanting to fight for about a year now,” Officer said.

It all started with a war of words between Miranda Fugate, 14 of Vandalia, and Emily Olinger, 14 of Bethel Township, over a guy they knew.

Fugate is being held at the Montgomery County Juvenile Justice Center for an unrelated incident. Olinger said late Thursday that she is expected to be in court next week to learn if she’ll face charges in the shovel incident.

The video shows the two girls fighting in what Officer said was Olinger’s yard.

Nearly seven minutes into the video, Fugate is seen chasing after Olinger, who is headed for a door to a house. Fugate stops and turns back when she sees that Olinger has a shovel in her hand. Fugate runs and Olinger hurls the shovel, hitting Fugate in the back of the head. Fugate then falls to the ground.

“I told her to leave again, and she refused, so then the first thing I saw was my shovel. I picked it up and then she said, ‘OK, OK’ and by the time she said she was done, I already hit her with it,” Olinger said. “I’ve been bullied ever since I was in the fourth grade, and that’s why I hit her with the shovel because I’m tired of it.”

Fugate, who is being referred to online as “Shovel Girl,” eventually went to the hospital. She said the hit gave her a concussion, caused her to be deaf in one ear and she may need surgery.

“She was mad because she lost, in my opinion, and grabbed the shovel,” Fugate said while being interviewed by the Dayton Daily News.

Lord said he viewed the video and called the content alarming.

“When we have these types of videos, we need to explore to make sure that they’re authentic and not staged, as far as an investigation,” Lord said.

Lord went on to say that anytime someone posts videos of themselves or others breaking the law, law enforcement officials will have a better chance to find out about the conduct.

A truancy officer in Miami County saw the video on Youtube and reported what he saw to the authorities. This resulted in a Bethel High School administrator reporting the incident to the sheriff’s office on Monday.

After questioning the parties involved, the sheriff’s office will decide whether to pursue charges with the prosecutor’s office, according to Lord.

“Anytime you’re dealing with an assault that’s potentially deadly, you run a risk. In this case, what the law is going to look at in Ohio is whether that injury is substantial physical harm or less than serious physical harm. If it’s determined to be serious physical harm then that could be a felony,” Lord said. “Also, if you start hitting people in the head with a shovel, it can lead to death.”

When asked her reaction to the fact that her son shot the video, Officer’s mother Martha Allison said, “I felt like he was just a kid, doing what he does best. I don’t think he had any feeling over it. I really haven’t talked to him about it. We’re just more or less excited about the notoriety and how it’s gotten so big.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

Thanksgiving and pets: How to keep your furry family members from getting sick during the holiday
Thanksgiving and pets: How to keep your furry family members from getting sick during the holiday

As family and friends sit down for Thanksgiving this week, you’re going to want to make sure that Fido and Fluffy aren’t begging for scraps under the table. The centerpiece of Thursday’s big dinner can be toxic to pets if you use garlic, butter and other seasoning, Fox News reported. If the bird is cooked without extra ingredients...
VIDEO: Remembering the massive Riverfront Stadium implosion in Cincinnati
VIDEO: Remembering the massive Riverfront Stadium implosion in Cincinnati

The Georgia Dome, which housed the Atlanta Falcons for 25 years, is set for implosion this morning. It will come down in similar fashion to Cinergy Field, the Cincinnati stadium demolished on Dec. 29, 2002, the same day the Cincinnati Bengals dropped a road game to the Buffalo Bills, 27-9. The longtime home of the Bengals and Reds was originally known...
What the parasites in a defector's stomach tell us about North Korea
What the parasites in a defector's stomach tell us about North Korea

The North Korean defector had sped across the demilitarized zone in a stolen jeep, then crawled south as the men who had been his comrades moments ago shot at him with handguns and AK-47 rifles. South Korean soldiers found the defector under a pile of leaves, bleeding from at least five gunshot wounds. He was brought to doctors, who expected to find...
Goodbye, Georgia Dome – thanks for the memories!
Goodbye, Georgia Dome – thanks for the memories!

As we say goodbye to the Georgia Dome after a quarter-century, it’s only fitting we look back at some it its most memorable moments. The Atlanta landmark was demolished at 7:30 a.m. Monday. The last event was held in the 25-year-old building in March, and the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium opened next door in August. >> Head to WSBTV...
LIVE: Implosion of the Georgia Dome
LIVE: Implosion of the Georgia Dome

Watch live as crews demolish the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
More Stories