Wayne County man facing felony charges after wife becomes subject of statewide alert

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A Wayne County man is facing five charges after allegedly putting his wife in danger, prompting a statewide Silver Alert.

Shortly before 9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office was called to the 8000 block of Jennings Road in northern Wayne County on a report of a motor vehicle crash involving injuries.

Jennings Road is just east of Whitewater near the Indiana/Ohio border.

The caller reported that while trying to assist the occupants of the vehicle, the male occupant, later identified as Travis Lee, 38, of Richmond, displayed a knife and threatened the caller, according to Wayne County Sheriff Randy Retter.

Retter said Lee then pulled a female from the vehicle and dragged her away into a wooded area. The female was believed to be his wife, Sommer Lee, 30, of Richmond.

Officials believed that Sommer Lee was in danger, so they issued a Silver Alert at about 3:30 a.m. Monday that was publicized throughout the state.

Multiple officers from several agencies engaged in efforts to locate both Sommer and Travis Lee. Aviation, drone and K9 units were deployed during the search.

Officers continued the search throughout the night.

On Monday morning, officers were called to a residence on Whitewater Road, where Sommer was located.

She was transported to Reid Health in Richmond for evaluation, and was later released from the hospital with minor injuries, Retter said.

Just before 11 a.m. Monday, officers located Travis Lee in the 7900 block of Cart Road and took him into custody after a brief foot pursuit. He also was taken to Reid Health for an evaluation, then transported to the Wayne County Jail.

Travis Lee was booked on the following charges:
1. Aggravated Battery – Level 3 Felony
2. Criminal Confinement – Level 3
3. Intimidation – Level 5
4. Strangulation – Level 6
5. Resisting Law Enforcement – Class A Misdemeanor

Retter said Wayne County Sheriff’s Office investigators are continuing a thorough investigation into the incident.

“This is an active investigation and additional charges are anticipated,” he said in a news release.

Retter thanked Indiana State Police, Richmond Police Department, Centerville Police Department, Richmond Fire Department, RedLine Ambulance Service, Randolph County Sheriff’s Office, Union City (Indiana and Ohio) police departments, Hollansburg (Ohio) Fire Department and Wayne County citizens for their assistance in this search and investigation.