Preliminary hearing for Middletown man charged with killing his uncle continued

Denzel Fuller, 22, expected back in court Friday.

The preliminary hearing for a Middletown man charged with fatally shooting his uncle has been continued until 9 a.m. Friday.

Denzel Fuller, 22, appeared this morning in Middletown Municipal Court and Judge James Sherron said Fuller’s hearing was continued. Fuller recently was assigned a new attorney, Lawrence Hawkins, who represented him in court.

Fuller faces 15 years to life in prison and his bond remains at $1 million.

Several of Fuller’s relatives and friends attended court this morning. One female yelled: “Keep your held up” as Fuller was led back to Middletown City Jail.

Fuller allegedly shot and killed his uncle, Terry Fuller, 42, of Middletown, Aug. 1 in the 2100 block of Grand Avenue in Middletown. It was the city’s first homicide of the year, said police Chief David Birk.

Last week, at Fuller’s arraignment, his mother and Terry Fuller’s sister, Tina Fuller, said her son “snapped,” he was scared for his life and he was protecting his family. She said her son was “not in the right state of mind” and the fatal shooting never should have happened.

“I put it all on the devil,” she said after the court appearance.

Middletown police were called at 10:30 p.m. Aug. 1 on a report of several shots fired near Grand Avenue and Wilson Street. Birk said the dispute between the two men started earlier in the night, then “rolled over” until the deadly shooting.

Terry Fuller died at the scene. His body was on the sidewalk curb when officers arrived. While no gun was recovered, police officers found more than 20 casings in the area, Birk said.

Denzel Fuller was tracked down by police and taken into custody in an apartment in the 600 block of Lafayette Avenue.

He previously was arrested in September 2017 for the robbery and assault of a pizza delivery driver on Hill Avenue in Middletown, according to court records. He pleaded guilty to robbery, a third-degree felony, in Butler County Common Pleas Court and was sentenced to two years in prison.

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