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WMOH Updates Archives for 2023-08

Plea In Deadly Robbery Spree

Federal prosecutors are recommending a 45 year  prison sentence for 32 year old Willie James Attaway.  He pleaded guilty to charges he shot and killed store owner Roop Gupta during a robbery at the Madeira Beverage convenience store in February of 2021. Attaway also pleaded guilty to four other robberies, including the Shell on Dixie and Laurel in the city of Hamilton.
Here are the locations robbed during the two day spree:
 

  • Feb. 8 – Shell on S. Mason Montgomery Road in Deerfield Township,
  • Feb. 8 – Shell on Dixie Highway in Hamilton, Ohio,
  • Feb. 9 – Madeira Beverage on Kenwood Road in Madeira, Ohio,
  • Feb. 9 – Sunoco on Kenwood Road in Blue Ash, Ohio, and
  • Feb. 9 – Marathon on North Broadway in Lebanon, Ohio. 

(Photo Source: Butler County Jail)

 

Task Force One Deploys To Florida

Ohio Task Force One is en route to Florida, where they will take part in search and rescue efforts resulting from Hurricane . They're bringing 60 tons worth of equipment and two canine dogs. The 47 member team is staging near Atlanta, where they will wait for their assignment.
West Chester firefighters Lieutenant Trevor Frodge and Jeremy Waldroff were among the team that left around 4:45am Tuesday morning.

 

Photo: Members of Ohio Task Force One are sworn in prior to their latest deployment.
Source: Ohio Task Force One Facebook

 

Former Senator Scott Nein Dies

A former Butler County state lawmaker has passed away. Scott Nein served in the Ohio House and Senate, and was named the Dean of the Senate toward the end of his legislative career. He was 72. The Middletown native died Saturday surrounded by family, according to a release from the Butler County Republican Party. Nein was a member of the Middletown School Board from 1988-1990, when he decided to run for the statehouse seat being vacated by John Boehner, who was making his first run for congress. Nein served in the house between 1991-1995, when he was appointed to fill the senate seat left vacant by the retirement of Barry Levy. Nein served in the senate through 2004, and later became the President and CEO of the Independent Insurance Agents Association of Ohio, until his retirement in 2017. 

A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, September 1, at 1:00 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 2910 Central Ave., Middletown. 

Hamilton's New Fire Chief

The City of Hamilton has a new fire chief. Tom Eickelberger took his oath of office during promotional ceremonies Monday. He had been serving as a deputy chief. Eickelberger succeeds Marc Mercer, who recently retired. He and nine others were sworn in by Public Safety Director Scott Scrimizzi. History was also made Monday. Heather Garcia became the first female firefighter in Hamilton's 196 year history to be promoted to the rank of Fire Lieutenant, according to the Hamilton Professional Firefighter's Union, IAFF Local 20.

(Photo courtesy of Hamilton IAFF Local 20's Facebook page)

New Roundabout Opens

Great news for motorists in West Chester. The Butler County Engineers Office says the $1.9 million roundabout at Tylersville Road and Beckett Road is now open to traffic. The project started on May 30th, and was completed on August 11th, just in time for the start of the school year.

The engineers office has also finished the $2.3 million widening of Tylersville Road between Lakota Springs and Lakota Hills Drive. Tylersville is now open to traffic in the area.

Issue One Fails

Ohio voters Tuesday rejected statewide Issue One, which would have made it harder to change the state's constitution. The Ohio Secretary of State's Office says 57% voted against the ballot issue, compared to 43% who voted in favor of the tougher standards. The unofficial voter turnout statewide was 39%. The vote now paves the way for a controversial abortion amendment which will be on the fall ballot. In Butler County, slightly more voters approved Issue One, with 44,384 yes votes, compared to 43,855 no votes. That's a difference of 529 votes. The Butler County Board of Elections says turnout was 35% for the special election. The busiest precinct was Oxford3, which reported a 61% turnout. According to a breakdown provided by the election board, 479 voters in Oxford3 checked the NO column, while 117 voted to approve the issue.

Hamilton Man Killed In Crash

A single vehicle crash in St. Clair Township claimed the life of a Hamilton man early Wednesday. The Butler County Sheriff's Office says 60-year old Michael D. Henslee crashed his 2012 Honda CRV on Riverside Drive near Wehr Road around 1:20am. Reports say he struck a tree. Henslee was pronounced dead at the scene by the Butler County Coroner's Office. The crash remains under investigation by the Serious Traffic Accident Reconstruction Team.

State Funds Two Major Road Projects

Governor DeWine has announced over $1.2 million in funding for two traffic safety projects in Butler County. ODOT's Highway Safety Improvement program awarded a $927,218 grant for construction of a new roundabout at Dimmick Road and McCauley Road in West Chester. The state also awarded $300,000 to fund preliminary engineering for a diverging diamond interchange at the Butler Regional Highway and State Route 747. Both projects are planned for fiscal year 2026. Statewide, the governor announced 27 projects, totalling $61 million.

 

[PHOTO: State Route 747 interchange at OH-129

Courtesy ODOT]

 

Dog Rescue Owner Arrested

The owner of the Helping Hands for Furry Paws Animal Rescue in Madison Township was arrested Wednesday on one felony and two misdemeanor animal cruelty charges. 60-year old Ronda Murphy was taken to the Middletown City Jail, then appeared at an arraignment hearing in Middletown Municipal Court. The judge set a $5,000 dollar bond, and set the preliminary hearing for next Wednesday August 9th at 9:00am. The judge approved a pre-trial release for Murphy, but banned her from possessing or residing with a companion animal. Last week, deputies and the Butler County Dog Warden conficscated close to 90 live dogs and over 30 dead dogs from Murphy's Mosiman Road property. Investigators said it was the most horrible conditions they've ever seen. The dogs are now in the custody of the Animal Friends Humane Society shelter on Princeton Road. Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones states "In over forty years, this is the worst case I have ever seen. This level of neglect and cruelty will never be tolerated in this county. If you mistreat animals like this, you will go to jail."

 

 

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