Reynoldsburg Officer Remembers 1981 Parole Shooting


UPDATED: Friday July 11, 2014 12:07 AM

A probation officer is recovering after he was shot while checking on a parolee Thursday morning in Columbus.

Investigators say Tyshawn Hancock shot John Farnsworth during a scuffle for a gun.

Another officer then shot and killed Hancock.

This isn't the first time gunfire has erupted during a probation visit.

Retired Reynoldsburg police officer Joe Graybeal told 10TV's Jerry Revish about the time he was shot.

Graybeal was injured in September 1981, when ex-con Charles Holly shot him and a parole officer with a 22 caliber derringer.

It happened inside the parole offices in the building that now houses the Columbus Health Department in East Columbus.

"I turned around and looked at him and he had the gun, so I grabbed his arm and I remember going up on his arm," said Graybeal.

While wrestling for the derringer, a bullet struck Graybeal in the chest.  Another struck the parole officer in the arm.

Graybeal's partner returned fire hitting the parole violator in the elbow.

Police carted Holly off to the county jail and charged him with felonious assault.

Graybeal spent 7 days in the hospital recovering from his wounds.

He says the incident prompted officials statewide to equip parole offices with a metal detector door. 

"This parole officer business is that pretty dangerous work?" asked Revish.  "That is right in line with law enforcement and it's all dangerous, probably more dangerous than it was then," said Graybeal.

Joe Graybeal spent 5 more years with the Reynoldsburg police department before lingering effects from the shooting forced him to retire.

He went on to serve as Reynoldsburg's safety director and as a city council member before ending his career in public service.

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