Tuesday, January 7, 2003

Attempted murder added to charges



By Sheila McLaughlin
The Cincinnati Enquirer

LEBANON - Evidence found at Alvin Tucker's house after a Christmas Eve attack on his ex-wife has led officials to believe that he meant to kill the woman, Warren County authorities say.

A Warren grand jury upgraded charges against Mr. Tucker on Monday, indicting him on a charge of attempted murder, along with felony counts of kidnapping, felonious assault, aggravated robbery and domestic violence in the stabbing and beating of Virginia Gilbert.

The 50-year-old Mason father of two remained in the Warren County Jail in lieu of $750,000 bail.

Assistant Prosecutor Rachel Hutzel wouldn't divulge what was found inside the Birchwood Farms Drive home because a judge sealed a search warrant in the case. However, she said that "evidence gained (there) supports a charge of attempted murder."

Mr. Tucker is accused of ambushing Ms. Gilbert when she arrived to pick up their daughters, age 5 and 7, from a scheduled visit with their father. Divorced for about one year, the couple shared parenting responsibilities, authorities said.

Ms. Hutzel alleged that Mr. Tucker dragged Ms. Gilbert into the house, pushed her down a flight of stairs, beat her in the head with the metal bar from a free weight, and stabbed her with an awl at least 26 times in the head, chest and shoulders.

Their 7-year-old daughter escaped from the house and went to a neighbor for help.

Mason officers found Ms. Gilbert semi-conscious in the front yard. Ms. Gilbert spent several days in the hospital, and continues to recover at an undisclosed location with her children.

Mr. Tucker was found two days later asleep in Ms. Gilbert's stolen car at a rest stop in Washington Courthouse after he placed a couple of 911 calls saying he wanted to turn himself in, authorities say.

He pleaded not guilty in a court appearance last week.

In another grand jury matter, a 19-year-old Greene County man was charged with five counts of theft.

Reed Finnell of Spring Valley is accused of stealing purses from grocery carts in early November as women loaded parcels into their cars at Lebanon and Springboro Kroger stores.

Some of the women were able to get a license plate number, which led police to Mr. Reed, Ms. Hutzel said.

E-mail smclaughlin@enquirer.com




TOP LOCAL STORIES
Girl, 17, killed while holding child
Lottery sales up, but profit misses goal
Boyles gets 13 years in ex-girlfriend's death
Buckeyes gear flies out of stores
Troops ship out by the thousands

ENQUIRER COLUMNS
PULFER: Helping kids early and often
RADEL: Second job was what he wanted

CINCINNATI-HAMILTON COUNTY
Mt. Healthy stops school bus service
Mom, daughter killed in crash
School board elects Warner president
New police oversight agency meets
Another local boy joins Vienna choir
Donation to pay for flags on firetrucks
Firefighters, police aid McDonald House

AROUND THE TRISTATE
3 suing to stay can - for now
Class-action suit sought on Oxycontin
Obituary: Ruth Shaffer, 92, was organist
Obituary: Alfred Wilhelm, Diamond executive
Good News: Travel show partnering in coat drive
Congrats

BUTLER COUNTY
Perjury an issue in Butler courts
Deadly road gets rumble strips
Boil-water warning wasn't heard
Policeman hurt while questioning motorist
Fairfield laboratories focus on heart disease

WARREN COUNTY
Attempted murder added to charges
Rapist found slain in cell

OHIO
Ohio Moments: Midwest got a taste of Antarctica's weather
Blackwell: GOP should boost black staffing
Village ponders ads on cruisers

KENTUCKY
Democratic strategy session moved
Another local auto business burgled
Patton outlines tax-hike targets
Voters get voice at town meeting
$10M grant to help Kentucky's jobless
Jackson to run for Ky. governor
Around the Commonwealth