Top local news for Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022

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

David Shaw’s Big River Get Down to return to Hamilton

The Big River Get Down will be back at RiversEdge this year.

The mega-music event is slated for May 20-21. It has not happened for the last two years.

David Shaw’s Big River Get Down features multiple bands and musicians and the headliner is The Revivalists, featuring Shaw — the band’s frontman who is a Hamilton native.


Longtime Hamilton attorney, former councilmember dies



Longtime Hamilton attorney, former teacher and city councilman, James E. Cooney died Saturday after a long fight with cancer.

Cooney, 75, was a Hamilton native and a graduate of Hamilton Catholic High School, Ohio University, University of Oregon and Salmon P. Chase School of Law. He worked in the Hamilton City Schools for 10 years and was a criminal attorney for 45 years.

“He loved his family, his work, his colleagues, Hamilton, Key West and of course Ireland,” his wife Holly, stated in his obituary.


Edgewood schools lockdown ends; officials investigate threat

Edgewood High School and Edgewood Middle School were locked down briefly Tuesday morning following an investigation into a social media threat.

The two schools, located in St. Clair Twp., were cleared of the lock-down status by 10:40 a.m.

“Edgewood High School and Edgewood Middle School are no longer on lockdown. It has been determined that there was no immediate threat to the safety of student and staff,” the district announced.


Apartments at Liberty Center get planning commission approval

Butler County officials have expressed misgivings over a proposal by Liberty Center owners to swap a planned retail anchor for apartments but the county planning commission approved the plan this week.

Liberty Center owners Apollo Global Management recently filed two “major modification” applications to the the planned use development with the township, one for a 300-unit apartment building and another for two drive-thru restaurants. The application notes there have been “significant changes in how people shop and where they want to work and live” and the “consensus is clear” they want to live where they can walk to work and other services so this will “position Liberty Center to respond to the shift in demand.”

The Butler County Planning Commission voted 4 to 3 in favor of the apartments earlier this week; they did not consider the drive-thru restaurants. Bruce Jones, who is the West Chester Twp. fiscal officer and chair of the planning board, said the feeling was a plan change could be good for the mega $350 million mixed-use development.


Trial continued for man charged in 16-year-old girl’s 2018 shooting death

A trial that was scheduled to begin today in Butler County Common Pleas Court for a Hamilton man charged with murder in the 2018 shooting death of a 16-year-old girl has been continued.

Markeylnd Townsend, 22, was indicted in April for murder with a gun specification and felonious assault stemming from a July 2018 incident in Fairfield Twp. He is accused of firing a weapon into a car full of people driven by Sydney Garcia-Tovar, 16, of Hamilton, who died of a gunshot wound.

Passenger Joseph Goolsby, 21, was also shot and recovered from his injuries.


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

JUST IN: Grand opening date announced for Warped Wing’s third location



The reigning king of Dayton craft beer is ready to open their highly-anticipated Mason location.

The grand opening of the Warped Wing Brewpub & Smokery, located at 5650 Tylersville Rd. in Mason, will take place on Friday, Feb. 4 during its regular hours of operation on Fridays, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.

“It was definitely a unique and rewarding experience melding what was once an old-world Irish pub and a fine dining restaurant into a brewery and taproom, but our contractors and design team knocked it out of the park,” said Nick Bowman, vice president of sales and marketing at Warped Wing. “I’m proud of what we’ve put together and excited to share it with the Mason community.”