Man in Franklin Twp. standoff requests bench trial



What was scheduled for a disposition/sentencing hearing in Franklin Municipal Court on Friday afternoon will become a bench trial for a Middletown man accused of several offenses, including a standoff on the Fourth of July with police.

Ebb Duhamel had appeared for a pretrial hearing on Sept. 4 and requested a trial on the charges he’s facing. Since then, the public defender assigned to represent him had a conflict and withdrew herself from the case. Duhamel appeared at Friday’s hearing with a new public defender who told Judge Ron Ruppert that he was entering not guilty pleas to all charges and wanted a bench trial.

Ruppert agreed to the request and set a trial date for 4 p.m. Nov. 6 in Franklin Municipal Court.

MORE: Hearing reset for man involved in two police standoffs in two days, including one he escaped during fireworks

Duhamel, 30, is charged with aggravated menacing, inducing panic, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and violating a protection order in connection with the July 4 incident. He also is charged with domestic violence and violating two protection orders stemming from a pair of incidents in May. Duhamel is being held under a $130,000 bond in the Warren County Jail on those charges but will remains in custody due to a previous jail sentence.

Duhamel is accused of barricading himself at a Mentz Road residence on July 4 and eluding capture by the Warren County Tactical Response Team. He allegedly stole a car and went to the Mentz Road residence because he had a female friend living there, according to police. Deputies said Duhamel was able to escape during the commotion and fireworks of the Independence Day holiday. Deputies seized the car Duhamel left behind, as well as suspected drugs and ammunition found in the car.

On July 5, Warren County notified law enforcement agencies that Duhamel was in Middletown and was believed to be armed and dangerous.

As officers surrounded a residence in the 600 block of Baltimore Street, people exited the two-story frame house and one person said Duhamel was inside. One gunshot was heard from inside the residence. Four adjacent residences were cleared as a precautionary measure.

A SWAT team located Duhamel, who was then taken to Middletown City Jail.

Several guns and ammunition were found inside the Baltimore Street home, police said.

Duhamel appeared July 6 in Middletown Municipal Court, where he entered guilty pleas to misdemeanor charges of inducing panic, resisting arrest and obstruction of official business.

Middletown Municipal Judge James Sherron sentenced Duhamel to 180 days in jail for inducing panic, and 90 days each for the resisting arrest and obstruction of official business charges.

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