Local Pastor Offers Support to Newcomerstown Officer

<p>Michaela Madison Reporting

(New Philadelphia, Ohio) Amid the often-critical comments about a Newcomerstown Police officer accused of falsifying a shooting, a local pastor is offering support.

Officer Brian Eubanks is accused of fabricating a story in which he was shot during a traffic stop earlier this week. He admitted later that he accused an innocent man and that the wound was in fact, self-inflicted.

Sr. Pastor at Legacy Church in New Philadelphia, Tommy Miller, explained that while he does not condone what officer Eubanks did, he does recognize that he’s clearly hurting.

“We as a community need to embrace this man at this point because if we handle him in the economy of judgment, judgment is going to lead to isolation, isolation is going to lead to further depression and that further depression is going to lead a successful [suicide] attempt and I don’t think any of us would feel good about that.”

Eubanks noted during questioning that he’s been struggling emotionally following a recent murder case and Miller explained that the public needs to take that into account.

“If there’s a gentleman that is so overwhelmed by life and by his job that he’s looking for an outlet to provide a permanent solution to his temporary problems, then he needs more help than he does criticism at this point.”

Miller went on to say that while the public’s judgement may be accurate, it is not necessarily effective.

In his initial report, officer Eubanks accused Chaz Gillian of the crime. This ignited a man hunt and public criticism of an innocent man.

Gillian was arrested and released without charges.

Miller explained he hopes the media and the people on social media are as eager to spread the word of Gillian’s innocence as they were his guilt.

Miller took to Facebook this week to extend an offer to Eubanks and his family.

“Officer Eubanks, absolutely. If you need somebody to talk to that’s not going to judge [you] I’ll listen.”

Miller encouraged Officer Eubanks to reach out to him directly: 330-440-3585.