Dover man with pellet gun accused of chasing kids

Russell Ewell Jr.

DOVER — Children ran to their homes after allegedly being chased by a pellet gun-wielding 36-year-old Dover man Wednesday night, authorities said.

Dover Police said it was “not clear at this time” what prompted Russell Ewell Jr. to allegedly threaten five kids ages 6 to 14 in the 900 block of Whatcoat Drive at 9 p.m. One kid also ran to a neighbor’s vehicle, police said.

Surveillance video showed Mr. Ewell carrying what appeared to be a black handgun while chasing the children, spokesman Master Cpl. Mark Hoffman said in a news release Thursday. Police said it was unknown how long the footage ran or in what area the alleged incident took place.

Officers went to the scene after a parent reported the alleged incident and Mr. Ewell was located at a residence in the 900 block of Whatcoat Drive, where he was taken into custody without incident.

“At that time, officers located a black Smith and Wesson pellet gun inside the residence,” Cpl. Hoffman said. “The gun did not have any markings to indicate that it was not a real hand gun.”

Mr. Ewell was taken into custody at a residence in the 900 block of Whatcoat Drive, police said.

Charges included five counts each of aggravated menacing and terroristic threatening, and single counts of possession of deadly weapon by person prohibited and possession of deadly weapon during commission of a felony. Mr. Ewell was held at James T. Vaughn Correctional Center near Smyrna on $20,000 secured bond.

Police said it was unknown whether Mr. Ewell knew the children before the alleged incident, whether the pellet gun was loaded. The gun is being stored as evidence at the police department, Cpl. Hoffman said.

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