Community pitches in to ‘ramp up’ WPD officer’s recovery from injuries suffered in SWAT incident


Pitching in for officer injured in line of duty

By John Hamilton - jhamilton@wnewsj.com



If you’d like to send a card or any type of well wishes to Officer Hamilton, please send it to: Wilmington Police Dept. c/o Officer Matt Hamilton, 69 N. South St., Wilmington, OH 45177.

WILMINGTON — A local police officer is on the road to recovery after suffering serious injuries in the line of duty.

Wilmington Police Officer Matt Hamilton has returned home after being in the hospital for serious leg injuries suffered during a standoff which resulted in three arrests earlier this month on Brownberry Drive.

“He’s on his way to recovery,” said Wilmington Police Chief Ron Cravens. “He’s still in good spirits. He’s still motivated. He misses the department, the community, and he can’t wait to get back to work.”

The injury occurred when Hamilton and other members of the Clinton County SWAT team stormed an apartment after a lengthy standoff to arrest the last of the three suspects who hadn’t surrendered to authorities, Thaddeus “Teddy” Knapp, 39.

The incident began when WPD officers had simply tried to serve a search warrant out of Xenia along with Xenia police.

Hamilton — wearing a helmet and gas mask, making it difficult to see — and 50 to 60 pounds of extra gear, took a hard fall down the stairs of the second-story apartment.

Hamilton suffered what Cravens called a “boot break” where the officer’s boot ends on the leg. This resulted in a spiral fracture of the tibia and fibula of his right leg, and a broken ankle. He also had a “total rupture of his Achilles’ tendon” in his left leg.

“Overall he had over five hours of surgery up at Kettering Hospital,” said Cravens, giving praise to Kettering Hospital and its staff.

With material donated by the Wilmington Lowe’s store, Cravens along with city Maintenance & Repair workers including Jerry Runk and WPD officers Bob Wilson, Jack Coates and Tyler Binkley came out and constructed a ramp at Hamilton’s house while he recovers. Hamilton’s rehab is ongoing.

Lowe’s donated about $600 worth of lumber and other materials, Cravens said.

The Brownberry Street incident resulted in the arrests of Brandon King, 29, Jennifer Roush, 39, and Knapp, 38.

Cravens indicated they would be pursuing charges against Knapp in relation to Hamilton’s injuries since they had to go inside to get him.

The incident overall involved upwards of 15 officers from the Wilmington Police Department, Clinton County Sheriff’s Office and Xenia Police Department, and took several hours.

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Pitching in for officer injured in line of duty

By John Hamilton

jhamilton@wnewsj.com

If you’d like to send a card or any type of well wishes to Officer Hamilton, please send it to: Wilmington Police Dept. c/o Officer Matt Hamilton, 69 N. South St., Wilmington, OH 45177.