18-Year-Old Man Indicted In ‘Random’ Killing Of Cleveland Police Detective, Civilian

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Cleveland police Det. James Skernivitz was shot and killed during a drug investigation.

CLEVELAND – Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced that David McDaniel, 18, was indicted for murdering a Cleveland Division of Police (CDP) Detective, 53, and another man, 50, in a parking lot near West 65th Street in Cleveland. Two others, Brittany Cremeans, 24, and Antonio Darby, 27, were also charged for their subsequent roles.

“Sadly, these types of random, senseless homicides happen in our community nearly every day. This time the victims were a police officer on duty to make our community a better place and a citizen who volunteered to assist him,” said Prosecutor O’Malley. “Two families are now without fathers and the entire community is left heartbroken due to yet another instance of senseless gun violence.”

On September 3, 2020, McDaniel, and two juveniles, 17 and 15, approached the Detective’s vehicle and fired multiple shots, striking both victims, before running away. Upon being shot, both victims were incapacitated and crashed the vehicle into a nearby playground. CDP officers responded to the scene after not receiving a response from the victims. Cleveland Emergency Medical Services responded and transported both victims to a nearby hospital where they were pronounced deceased.

An investigation was conducted by CDP’s Homicide Unit, Narcotics Unit, Intelligence Unit, NICE Unit, and Real Time Crime Center, along with the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office. They connected McDaniel and the two juveniles to the crime. McDaniel and the 17-year-old were arrested on September 6. The 15-year-old was arrested on September 8. The investigation also revealed that Cremeans and Darby lied about their roles to law enforcement and helped dispose of the suspected murder weapons.

McDaniel has been indicted on the following charges:

  •  Four counts of Aggravated Murder
  • Two counts of Murder
  • Two counts of Aggravated Robbery
  • Two counts of Felonious Assault
  • One count of Tampering With Evidence

Cremeans and Darby have each been indicted on the following charges:

  •  Two counts of Obstructing Justice
  • One count of Tampering With Evidence

Both juveniles face numerous charges in Juvenile Court that include Aggravated Murder, Murder, Aggravated Robbery, and Felonious Assault. Both juveniles have denied the charges and remain incarcerated at the Juvenile Detention Center. Their next court date is scheduled for October 27.

McDaniel is currently being held at the Cuyahoga County Jail on $3,000,000 bond. He is scheduled to be arraigned at the Cuyahoga County Justice Center on Tuesday, September 22 at 8:30 a.m. Cremeans and Darby will be arraigned on October 1 at 8:30 a.m.

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