Victim identified in Springfield shooting that prompted school closures

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

One person was arrested early Monday in connection to a fatal shooting that happened Sunday afternoon on South Center Street.

The shooting was reported in the 800 block of South Center Street around 2:39 p.m. Tiffany Higgins, 38, was found dead inside with multiple gunshot wounds, according to a city release Monday.

According to the release, while investigating, officers learned a “person of interest” had threatened “to shoot unknown individuals at an undisclosed school.”

With the suspect still at large on Sunday evening, multiple Springfield area schools announced they would close Monday to ensure the safety of their students and staff. School officials said the decisions came following information received from the Springfield Police Division.

The police release said the school closure decision came “out of an abundance of caution.”

The Ohio State Highway Patrol, the Clark County Sheriff’s Office and Department of Homeland Security assisted with the shooting investigation and arrest.

“Without this collaborative effort, we would not have been able to locate and apprehend the individual suspected to be involved in this incident and ensure the safety of our community and schools,” the city’s release said.

The city did not provide additional details about the shooting death or the suspect’s arrest Monday.

The investigation is still active, the city release said, and anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact Springfield police at 937-324-7716.

In a 911 call obtained by the News-Sun, a relative told a dispatcher the woman who was shot had not been answering her door. She said she believed she was shot in the head.

“She’s dead; she’s gone,” the caller said.

She said she was unsure who shot her relative.

Springfield City Schools, Global Impact STEM Academy, the Springfield-Clark CTC and Clark State canceled classes Monday because of the incident.

According to a spokesperson, Springfield City School District was notified by police Monday morning a suspect was arrested.

“The SPD did notify the Springfield City School District of apprehension of the suspect in the case and as a result, the district will return to normal operations tomorrow (Tuesday),” said Cherie Moore, director of communications.

The district said it would hold all after-school events and practices Monday as planned and return to classes Tuesday.

“Late on March 17, the Springfield City School District was informed of an active police investigation involving threats that directly impacted our schools, necessitating the immediate closure of all district facilities for Monday, March 18, 2024. This decision was made to ensure the safety of our students and staff,” Superintendent Bob Hill said. “Our thoughts are with all involved in this very unfortunate situation.”

Announcements of school closures Sunday night for unspecified safety reasons touched off a flurry of social media posts.

SPD thanked the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Department of Homeland Security for assisting in the case.

“Without this collaborative effort, we would not have been able to locate and apprehend the individual suspected to be involved in this incident and ensure the safety of our community and our schools,” the release stated.

Anyone with information related to the shooting is asked to contact Springfield Police at 937-324-7716.

Springfield police did not issue any public statements Sunday about the shooting death on Center Street or its discussions with school officials.

Nearby, the village of Yellow Springs issued an advisory Sunday evening alerting residents to shelter in place due to an investigation involving the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations and village police near West South College Street.

“We are asking residents to stay in place,” the post read. “Refrain from answering your doors if someone approaches ...”

The alert was issued about 9:30 p.m., and the village announced before 11 p.m. the 22-year-old man Yellow Springs police considered armed and dangerous was in custody.

That was believed to be connected to an incident in the village last Thursday.