WILMINGTON — An investigator testified Wednesday he had to “sidestep the blood” of the victim at the scene of an alleged machete attack last July in Clinton County.
“This was the largest amount of blood I had seen where the person did not die,” said Clinton County Sheriff’s Sgt. Robert Gates, the lead investigator on behalf of the state and the last of the prosecution’s witnesses in the Common Pleas Court trial of accused attacker Lee DeBord.
Among the deputies were Karen Abbitt and Tyler Alsop, who testified about locating and collecting the machete allegedly used.
Alsop testified he located the machete under a sofa at the residence. He took photos of the object and Abbitt placed it in an evidence bag.
Six members of the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office spoke for the state, represented by Katie Wilkin of the Clinton County Prosecutor’s Office.
Rob Baker, the defense attorney, only called DeBord, 50, to testify on his behalf.
DeBord is charged with two counts of felony 2 felonious assault and felony 3 tampering with evidence related to a July 25, 2018 incident where he allegedly assaulted his roommate Roger Tucker, 30, with a machete. The incident took place at their residence in the community of Cuba, south of Wilmington. DeBord had left the scene and was later apprehended in Clermont County on Aug. 1.
Gates, Major Brett Prickett and Detective Doug Estes recalled the apprehension of DeBord in Clermont County. Estes said that when DeBord was arrested, he claimed he wanted to see his girlfriend one last time, and how “he was just trying to defend himself.”
After the state’s last witness, DeBord took the stand.
DeBord stated he told Tucker to move out and the two verbally argued afterward, later on making a fake phone call to authorities in an attempt to scare Tucker, who DeBord said had taken drugs that day.
DeBord told the court he wanted Tucker to leave because allegedly someone had overdosed and died “on his couch” and he didn’t want that to happen again. He told the court he and his girlfriend were getting ready to go fishing which was why he had the machete.
When asked why he had the machete, he said he would use it sometimes to cut branches that may be in the way around where they fish.
He claimed Tucker than “jumped” him, he defended himself and hit Tucker once with the machete, despite multiple severe injuries being reported by a doctor in previous testimony..
Judge John “Tim” Rudduck decided to recess the court for the rest of the day to work on jury guidelines. The jury will look over those and hear the closing statements from the attorneys on Thursday.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574