Man pleads guilty in beating death last summer at Hamilton residence

Delmer Vickers Jr. pleaded guilty Tuesday to beating a man to death last summer at a Hamilton residence.

The 60-year-old was indicted for murder and felonious assault last summer shortly after Douglas D. Centers, 58, was found dead on the evening of Aug. 20 in the 1100 block of South 13th Street, according to the police report. Centers suffered blunt-force trauma to the head.

Vickers was scheduled to go to trial July 15, but he pleaded guilty in Butler County Common Pleas Court to a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter. The felonious assault charge was dismissed.

Judge Greg Howard set sentencing for Aug. 7. Vickers faces an indefinite sentence of three to 16 1/2 years in prison. He has been held in the Butler County Jail in lieu of $1 million bond since his arrest.

Vickers “struck and/or kicked the victim about the head and body numerous times,” according to court documents. He was was arrested Aug. 24 in New Miami, according to officials.

There was no reading of the facts of the case in court when Vickers entered the guilty plea, but Vickers defense attorney Darrin Nye said it was a “fisticuffs” incident that resulted in Centers’ death. He noted there was no weapon used.

Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said the evidence showed “mutual combat between the men that fit with the manslaughter plea.”

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