Man who allegedly failed to warn Richmond officer, accused killer could get death penalty

The death penalty will be sought for the alleged shooter of slain Richmond cop Daniel Ellis and for the man who failed to warn the officer he was in danger, the prosecution said Monday.

Raleigh Sizemore Jr., Gregory Ratliff, Rita Creech and Carl Banks, pleaded not guilty to various charges Monday during arraignments before Madison Circuit Court Judge William Clouse Jr. All four were indicted last week by a Madison County grand jury.

Sizemore and Ratliff are eligible for the death penalty because the offense of murder was intentional and the victim, Daniel Ellis, was a police officer engaged at the time of the act in the lawful performance of his duties," according to the prosecution’s motion.

Ellis, 33, died earlier this month after he was shot in the head while investigating an attempted robbery at a gas station in Richmond. The robbery investigation led Ellis, a seven-year veteran the Richmond department, to Ratliff's apartment in search of Sizemore, who had hidden with Creech in a back bedroom.

Ratliff let Ellis into the apartment and allowed him to search, but said no one else was there and that there were no weapons in the home, the report said. Sizemore then allegedly shot Ellis as the officer crossed the threshold of the bedroom door.

Sizemore, 34, was indicted on charges of murder, two counts of attempted murder, unlawful imprisonment and a felon in possession of a handgun.

Ratliff, 25, was indicted on charges of complicity to murder, two counts of complicity to attempted murder and complicity to unlawful imprisonment.

Creech, 44, and Banks, 35, were indicted for their roles in the attempted murder that Ellis was investigating when he was shot. Sizemore allegedly tried to take the woman’s purse at the Gulf station.

Creech was a passenger in the van that drove from the robbery scene. Banks drove the van.

Clouse scheduled a Feb. 26 status conference in all four cases.