Top local news for Monday, Mar. 14, 2022

The Butler County Sheriff's Office B.U.R.N. taskforce found marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash and a pickle when they pulled a man over on I-75. Photo: BCSO

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The Butler County Sheriff's Office B.U.R.N. taskforce found marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash and a pickle when they pulled a man over on I-75. Photo: BCSO

Here is a look at five big Butler County stories today to catch up on the news.


Middletown removes city manager after fewer than 2 years

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Middletown City Manager Jim Palenick speaks at a groundbreaking for Phoenix Metals at MADE Industrial Park in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Middletown City Manager Jim Palenick speaks at a groundbreaking for Phoenix Metals at MADE Industrial Park in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

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Middletown City Manager Jim Palenick speaks at a groundbreaking for Phoenix Metals at MADE Industrial Park in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Jim Palenick and the city of Middletown signed a mutual separation agreement this morning, less than two years after he was hired as Middletown’s city manager.

Middletown City Council met in executive session this morning, then voted 5-0 to separate from Palenick, who started in July 2020.

Fire Chief Paul Lolli, 60, was named interim city manager and he will continue as fire chief. He’s scheduled to retire as fire chief in less than two years, he said. He has served the city for 32 years, including seven years as chief.

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Man arrested with drugs and a pickle following Butler Co. traffic stop

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The Butler County Sheriff's Office B.U.R.N. taskforce found marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash and a pickle when they pulled a man over on I-75. Photo: BCSO

The Butler County Sheriff's Office B.U.R.N. taskforce found marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash and a pickle when they pulled a man over on I-75. Photo: BCSO

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The Butler County Sheriff's Office B.U.R.N. taskforce found marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash and a pickle when they pulled a man over on I-75. Photo: BCSO

A vehicle stopped Sunday afternoon on Interstate 75 in Butler County resulted the arrest of a man on felony drug charges, according to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office.

At about 1:30 pm, a K-9 deputy assigned to the Butler Undercover Regional Narcotics unit stopped a car traveling south on Interstate I-75. During the stop it was discovered the driver was in possession of marijuana and a large amount of a wax substance along with cash, according to the sheriff’s office. Also found in the search was a large packaged pickle.

Antonio Stanley, 31, was arrested and booked into the Butler County Jail for trafficking in drugs and possession of drugs, both fifth-degree felonies.

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Middletown fire chief named interim city manager

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Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli, who was on paid administrative leave pending the investigation into his OVI charge, now has been suspended 5 days without pay.

Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli, who was on paid administrative leave pending the investigation into his OVI charge, now has been suspended 5 days without pay.

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Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli, who was on paid administrative leave pending the investigation into his OVI charge, now has been suspended 5 days without pay.

Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli, 60, was named interim city manager on Monday after Jim Palenick and the city of Middletown signed a mutual separation agreement.

Lolli will continue as fire chief. He’s scheduled to retire as fire chief in less than two years, he said. He has served the city for 32 years, including seven years as chief.

Lolli will be paid an additional $1,293.75 every two weeks to serve as interim city manager, according to his contract.

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West Chester Twp. man killed in crash on I-75

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Danger on the road. Blue flasher on the police car at night.

Danger on the road. Blue flasher on the police car at night.

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Danger on the road. Blue flasher on the police car at night.

Police suspect impairment and speed resulted in the death of a West Chester Twp. man in a car crash in the Dayton area over the weekend.

The crash happened near I-75 and Needmore Road in Harrison Twp. around 8:10 a.m. Saturday. The man killed was identified as 48-year-old Charles Kay, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.

A “silver Honda Civic was driving northbound on I-75 near Wagner Ford Road where the driver left his lane of travel and side-swiped a white 2019 Dodge Ram pickup truck that was headed northbound,” the release said. The Honda Civic continued north for exactly one mile and exited the interstate at Needmore Road, the release said.

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Five Points intersection road project begins; Hancock Avenue closed

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Roundabout construction work has started on the Five Points intersection on the border of Hamilton and Fairfield Twp., and is a crossroads where Hancock Avenue, Grand Boulevard, Tylersville Road, Hamilton-Mason Road and Tuley Road meet. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Roundabout construction work has started on the Five Points intersection on the border of Hamilton and Fairfield Twp., and is a crossroads where Hancock Avenue, Grand Boulevard, Tylersville Road, Hamilton-Mason Road and Tuley Road meet. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

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Roundabout construction work has started on the Five Points intersection on the border of Hamilton and Fairfield Twp., and is a crossroads where Hancock Avenue, Grand Boulevard, Tylersville Road, Hamilton-Mason Road and Tuley Road meet. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

HAMILTON/FAIRFIELD TWP. — The long-awaited Five Points intersection roundabout improvement has started today, March 14, closing part of Hancock Avenue for about two months.

The Butler County Engineer’s Office said the roundabout construction’s first phase phase requires a 60-day closure of Hancock Avenue from the intersection to approximately 100 feet southeast of Bender Avenue. The road is closed to all through-traffic and is tentatively scheduled to reopen on May 13, weather permitting. Hamilton Mason Road and Grand Boulevard will remain open until the final weeks of construction.

The Five Points intersection straddles the border of Hamilton and Fairfield Twp., and is a crossroads where Hancock Avenue, Grand Boulevard, Tylersville Road, Hamilton-Mason Road and Tuley Road meet.

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AND, for an extra sixth story of the day ...

North ‘B’ Street in Hamilton, a major artery of the city, to reopen in May

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North B Street, the site of the much-anticipated Spooky Nook Sports Champion Mill complex, is expected to reopen in May. Pictured is North B Street at Black Street in front of the Spooky Nook project. MICHAEL D. PITMAN/STAFF

North B Street, the site of the much-anticipated Spooky Nook Sports Champion Mill complex, is expected to reopen in May. Pictured is North B Street at Black Street in front of the Spooky Nook project. MICHAEL D. PITMAN/STAFF

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North B Street, the site of the much-anticipated Spooky Nook Sports Champion Mill complex, is expected to reopen in May. Pictured is North B Street at Black Street in front of the Spooky Nook project. MICHAEL D. PITMAN/STAFF

Motorists have had to detour around the Spooky Nook Sports Champion Mill project for nearly two years because North ‘B’ Street has been closed to traffic.

Soon, they’ll be able to drive past the 1.2 million-square-foot redevelopment project of the former Champion Paper Mill company.

“Our anticipated opening date is going to be sometime in May,” said Hamilton Director of Engineering Rich Engle.

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