Hamilton County sheriff: Homeowner shot 2 intruders in Columbia Township

Hamilton County sheriff: Homeowner shot 2 intruders in Columbia Township
Posted at 9:27 AM, Jul 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-22 21:59:42-04

COLUMBIA TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- A homeowner shot two men who broke into his home early Saturday, the sheriff's office said.

The break-in happened at about 3:15 a.m. on Kenoak Lane, off Kennedy Avenue. One of the men was in critical condition as of Saturday evening.

The homeowner, 24-year-old Gary Gross, was awake with his girlfriend and 14-month-old son in their bedroom when he heard his screen door open. He grabbed a hammer nearby and crawled on his stomach to the living room, where he saw two men. The men lunged toward him, he said, and he ran out to his car where he keeps his revolver.

Gross fired shots at the men; one of them ran out the front door, and the other escaped out of the back door. Gross said he shot at their vehicle, and a bullet shattered the driver’s side window.

“It was really a scary feeling, them being there at 3 in the morning .... I just never feel like this. I grew up on this street,” Gross said.

They were found not far away, in Cincinnati. Both were taken to University of Cincinnati Medical Center. The sheriff's office hasn't released their names as they notify the men's families and continue the investigation.

Gross said his girlfriend is shaken up over the incident. He didn’t want to harm the men, he said, but he was worried about the safety of his family throughout the whole ordeal.

“Right now I’m just really trying to be the best man I can be for them,” he said.

Neighbors shouldn’t worry, Gross said, and he’s hoping it was a one-time incident.

“I feel like it’s really just one of those things that somebody thought they could get away with something on a quiet street … it’s been a pretty good neighborhood for 20 years plus, so I think it’ll stay like that,” he said.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Hamilton County Sheriff's Criminal Investigative Section at 513-851-6000 or Crime Stoppers at 513-352-3040.