Resident describes gunfire at Middletown apartment complex

No motive, suspect yet in fatal shooting.

Sam Hagenschneider lives just two buildings from where the shooting occurred and said he heard gunshots.

“I thought they were fireworks and didn’t think much of it,” Hagenschneider said. About 30 minutes later, he saw police lights and watched as a crime scene unit arrived.

“It was crazy,” he said, adding he estimates he heard about nine to 10 shots. “I think the people in the car were returning fire.”

After police left, Hagenschneider took photos of an apartment window that he said was hit by gunfire.

Hagenschneider, who has lived in the complex for about three years, said, “there has never been any shootings or anything like this. It’s usually pretty quiet.”

INITIAL REPORT:

Middletown police returned Monday to the scene of a fatal shooting to continue their investigation, but have not released information about a possible motive or suspect.

Jerry Barnett Jr., 25, of Middletown, was fatally shot late Sunday while sitting in a car outside the 1200 block of Jackson Lane, according to police.

Barnett and three others walked out of his apartment in the Williamsburg Place development at about 10:25 p.m. and got into a vehicle.

One or more people on foot began shooting at the car, striking Barnett, who was sitting in the backseat, according to Middletown police.

It appeared Barnett suffered two gunshots, police said.

The driver of the car, Aubrey Melvin, fled the scene with Dante Curry in the front seat and the wounded Barnett in the back seat. They drove to the Dollar General at 2106 Central Ave., where they called police.

The first officers to respond at the Dollar General saw Barnett on his back in the floor board of the backseat.

“He was not breathing and it appeared that he had been shot twice,” the report stated.

Melvin and Curry were standing outside the vehicle, according to police.

Barnett was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

Barnett was known to Middletown police and had previously been arrested for driving under suspension, drug abuse heroin, burglary and assault, according to Middletown Municipal Court records.

On Monday afternoon, police returned to the Williamsburg Place apartment complex and canvassed the area for witnesses and sought surveillance video from surrounding businesses, according to Maj. Mark Hoffman.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Lt. Jim Cunningham at 513-425-7737.

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