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Spells sentenced for attempted murder of Fort Wayne police officer

Wednesday, July 2, 2014 - 8:05 am

A Fort Wayne man convicted last month of attempted murder and other charges for a 2013 incident in which a gun was fired at a police officer was sentenced to 90 years in prison Tuesday in Allen Superior Court.

Daniel L. Spells, 34, was sentenced to 50 years for attempted murder, a Class A felony; eight years for carrying a handgun without a license with a prior felony conviction, a Class C felony; two years for criminal recklessness, a Class D felony; and 30 years for being a habitual offender, according to the judgment of conviction.

All counts are to be served consecutively, and Spells was given credit for four days served in the Allen County Confinement Facility in pretrial confinement. Spells also was ordered to pay restitution of $273 to the city of Fort Wayne as well as $100 for court costs and a public defender fee, the judgment said.

Judge Frances Gull also recommended that Spells receive mental health treatment, based on a documented history of mental illness, and be placed in maximum security.

Spells was arrested May 17, 2013, when police responded to a domestic disturbance and saw a man walking in the 2800 block of South Harrison Street who fit the description of the man involved in the disturbance, according to a probable cause affidavit.

A police officer questioned the man, who was identified as Spells. The officer noticed Spells shielded his right side from the officer's view and acted suspiciously, prompting the officer to grab Spells' left arm, according to court documents.

According to the documents the following occurred:

Spells drew a handgun as the officer tackled him. Spells fired the gun twice while the gun barrel was within 12 inches of the officer's right shoulder. During the skirmish, Spells continued to fire the gun until it was empty.