Maple Avenue residents want Hamilton police to ramp up

The shattered glass glistens in front of the door that stands approximately six feet from a makeshift memorial for Tim Dugan, who was killed early last month at 829 Maple Avenue.

Neighbors say they are trying to keep the peace and rid the area of drugs and those who deal them.

Dugan was found dead from a gunshot wound, according to Hamilton police Sgt. Brian Robinson. The Butler County Coroner’s Office has ruled Dugan’s death a homicide.

A 911 call was placed by a man claiming to have shot Dugan in self-defense over money, according to recordings obtained by the Journal-News.

In the 911 call, a man who identified himself as Robert Bishop tells the dispatcher, "A guy I know, I owed him money, he came in and he went ballistic, beat me up. He pulled a gun on me, we fought over it and I had to shoot."

Some residents have set up their own neighborhood watch, because they say that, even though their has been a promise to crack down on crime, it seems to be continuing.

“I mean, come on man, you can see the glass busted out and all the stuff around that place,” Mark Jones said, as he pointed to a blanket covering the busted out window where Dugan was shot. “All of us really want to stay out of this, but we want the police to know what’s going on down here.”

A half-dozen people walked by the apartment and stepped on some of the glass shards that adorned the sidewalk and steps leading into the residence once occupied by Bishop.

“Every night there is something going on out here,” said Rich Martin, of Maple Avenue told the Journal-News.

Police Chief Craig Bucheit is trying to get neighbors to champion the “See Something, Say Something,” approach. He said the area has become a trouble spot, but police want to work with the residents to curb the crime problem.

“We need folks in the community who want justice, who want to see this violence stopped as much as we do,” Bucheit said. “Police need witnesses who see something or community members who may have information about a crime to come forward and share that information with law enforcement.”

Jones said people are worried that the crime won’t stop. “We see people coming in and out of that apartment,” he said.

Officer Kristy Collins of the HPD said the investigation into Dugan’s death is still ongoing and there have not been any arrests in the case. Bishop was injured in the shooting but has been released from the hospital and has not been charged in the case.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Hamilton Police Department’s Investigation Section at (513) 868-5811 ext. 2002.

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