Tuesday, February 13, 2001

Judge's home under guard


Possible gang symbol at front door may indicate threat

By Allen Howard
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Police have put a Hamilton County Common Pleas judge's East Walnut Hills home under surveillance after a possible gang symbol was discovered at her front door last week.

        Judge Melba Marsh said she found a red bandana, folded in a triangle shape with a corner of it pointing toward the door, on her porch when she went to get her morning newspaper Wednesday.

        “I don't know what this means,” Judge Marsh said Mon day. “It is nerve-racking to me. It could be that someone is playing a nasty joke, or it could be serious.”

        Cincinnati Police Detective Gregory Hill, who is investigating the incident, said he does not have any suspects.

        “We know we have gangs here,” Detective Hill said. “Some use red as their symbol and some use blue. But that is as far as we have been able to go with it.”

        Prosecutor Michael Allen said such incidents are becoming more common. “I think the criminals are much more bold than when I was on the bench” from 1993-96, he said.”

        Judge Marsh wondered whether the bandana incident is connected to other peculiar things that have happened since she moved to the house - in September.

        In October, she found pellets from a BB gun that had been fired into a back-door window. In December, they saw tracks around the house during a snowfall.

        ”

        Both the judge and detectives are examining her criminal docket to see whether they can find a connection with a particular case.

       



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