BLANCHESTER — “We’ve had a busy couple of weeks. But the demand for service doesn’t stop,” said Blanchester Police Chief Scott Reinbolt during Thursday’s village council meeting.
During the police department’s report, Reinbolt addressed criticism the department has received involving the recent shooting of Mary Neace by Jamie McLaughlin at their residence on Orchard View Lane. Reinbolt addressed that they have been criticized for not making an immediate arrest.
Through the department’s investigation, they have had reason to believe the shooting was accidental despite some serious injuries to Neace.
Reinbolt compared the criticism to a scene in a Western film where citizens want to hang the perpetrator of a crime with the sheriff coming out to calm the crowd down.
“In a lot of ways, that’s the situation the police department has faced for the last week,” said Reinbolt.
He noted that everyone in the department has had 10- to 12-hour work shifts and that he personally has not had a night of uninterrupted sleep for a week.
In the past week the BPD has also dealt with other high-profile incidents, including EMS personnel being dispatched to a wrong apartment — resulting in the resident holding a gun on the responders (no one was injured or charged) — and an incident in which a man allegedly tied up a woman and stole her gun (she escaped serious injury; the suspect was later arrested).
Within the next few days, Blanchester police will present their findings in the McLaughlin-Neace incident investigation to the prosecuting attorney.
“I suspect we won’t hear praise from the ‘hang him now’ crowd for having done our job. No matter, we know what we did was right,” Reinbolt said.
Also during council:
• Council held the first reading of an ordinance establishing newer curfews for the village. The second reading will take place at their next meeting on May 24.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574