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Neighbors of standoff suspect picking up pieces after fire

Posted at 11:36 PM, Feb 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-03 23:36:50-05

PIERCE TWP — Nearly 24 hours after a deadly standoff that killed one Clermont County deputy and wounded another, the charred, blackened remains of suspect Wade Winn's apartment has a new addition: a memorial for Detective Bill Brewer.

As the memorial grows, it's hard to ignore the gutted apartment building behind it, as residents still pick through the ashes to salvage what they can.

"Obviously staying here isn't an option," said Nolan Proud, one neighbor whose apartment went up in flames in the fire that erupted during Sunday morning's standoff in Clermont County.

When asked what his next step would be, Proud said rebuilding is the only thing left to do. "Just getting my stuff back," he said. "I mean, most of my clothes got ruined. The only pair of shoes I have are the boots I have on, and they're ruined from being in here. Really, just starting from scratch."

Proud and his girlfriend are relocating to a family member's home in the meantime, but the steps to rebuild aren't easy. Other neighbors are relying on the Red Cross for help.

"My girlfriend was still here, and I had left," said Proud. "I thought everything was going to be fine. I was told by the cops they had it under control, and it was just a burglary, and they couldn't get the guy to put down his weapon."

Now, the roof to Proud's apartment is destroyed, and his belongings have been burned.

The Clermont County Sheriff's Office has not said what exactly caused the fire, but they have confirmed that it was a result of the standoff. The State fire marshall has been asked to investigate.

There are 18 apartments in the building police say Wade Winn barricaded himself inside, and neighbors said none of them are safe to stay in tonight.