Search for 6-year-old dumped in Ohio River continues, mother facing murder charges

Ohio News

UPDATE 2:37 PM: Middletown Chief of Police David Birk said Monday in a news conference Brittany Gosney and James Russell Hamilton went to the Middletown Police lobby Sunday just after 10 a.m. and told police 6-year-old James Hutchinson has been missing since Saturday. Birk said it is difficult to understand exactly what happened due to conflicting stories from the suspects.

The search for James Hutchinson continues. Birk said the high water level is making the search difficult. The Butler County Sheriff’s Office is assisting the search with air support.

Birk said children’s services has been involved with the family in the past but did not elaborate. He did say police are grateful the two remaining children are safe with children services.

Middletown City Schools Superintendent Marlon Styles said the district will have grief support in place for students, teachers and staff until the end of the week. A Celebration of Life will be held Tuesday at 6:45 p.m. at Barnitz Stadium.

“James was a wonderful student, he was a fun-loving kid,” Styles said.

Birk said there are many services available for people struggling and anyone who needs help can contact police or the school district for resources.

UPDATE 2:30 PM: Middletown Police, the Preble County Sheriff and the Middletown City Schools Superintendent are holding a news conference to discuss the death of a six-year-old boy who police say was dumped in the Ohio River.

UPDATE 1:55 PM: James Russell Hamilton and Brittany Gosney were arraigned Monday in a Middletown court Monday after police say a six-year-old boy was killed and dumped in the Ohio River.

Gosney faces charges of murder, tampering with evidence and abuse of corpse. Hamilton faces charges of tampering with evidence and abuse of corpse. Middletown Municipal Court Judge James Sherran set bond at $1 million on the murder charge for Gosney. Hamilton received $100,000 bond on the tampering charge and an additional $5,000 for abuse of a corpse.

Both Gosney and Hamilton are scheduled to appear for a hearing Monday, March 8.

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio (WDTN) — A six-year-old boy was killed and dumped in the Ohio River, according to Middletown Police.

Police said James Hutchinson was reported missing by his mother on Sunday. But when questioned further, the mother and her boyfriend said the child was killed in Preble County a few days prior.

Court documents say the mother told police she took James to Rush Run Park in Preble County and was going to leave him there. The boy attempted to get back in the car and the mother drove off at a high rate of speed, dragging him.

The mother left the park and returned 30 to 40 minutes later where she found James in the parking lot with a head injury. She told police she believed James was dead and took him back to a home on Crawford Street.

The following day, the mother drove to the Ohio River and dumped the boy’s body in the water, according to court documents.

Police say they are working with trained searchers in an attempt to recover the boy’s body, but the river is very high and treacherous so they are not disclosing the exact location. They also say they are working closely with the Preble County Sheriff’s Office as well as the prosecutors from Butler and Preble counties.

The mother is facing charges of murder, abuse of a corpse, and tampering with evidence. Her boyfriend is being charged with abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence. The two are scheduled to be arraigned in court Monday.

There are two other children in the household and they have been removed from the home.

2 NEWS will continue to follow this story and keep you updated as new information is available.

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