EAST LIVERPOOL - A man with a bullet lodged in his forehead walked into East Liverpool City Hospital on Monday morning. He was flown by helicopter to a Pittsburgh hospital, where no update on his condition was released Tuesday.
"The victim's not cooperating," police Chief John Lane said Monday concerning Douglas "Fresh" Austin, 29, whose last known address was in Columbus.
Austin walked into the East Liverpool hospital at about 8:42 a.m. Monday with a single shot to the forehead. He was coherent and talked with doctors, police said.
He initially told police the shooting did not happen inside the city, but Lane said other people indicated it had occurred at 2616 Michigan Ave., a residence owned by George Pugh and occupied by Dave Pugh.
Police said Austin reportedly got a ride to the Sixth Street area then walked to the hospital.
Officers went to the East End home, where they reported finding blood spatters and bloody clothing outside on a staircase.
A man and woman inside were taken to the police station for questioning and then released, according to detectives.
Armed with a search warrant out of East Liverpool Municipal Court Monday afternoon, officers searched the house, looking for evidence of the shooting, but afterward said none was found inside.
Lane said police believe the shooting may be drug-related, saying Austin was one of three men inside a Bradshaw Avenue home raided by several law enforcement agencies Nov. 16 and saying that he has been involved in other drug activities in the city.
While officers were investigating the shooting, a car drove through the neighborhood and appeared to be headed toward the Michigan Avenue residence, according to Lane, who said it was stopped by an officer after learning it had been reported stolen by its owner, Harold Kidder.
Lane said Kidder's family had also reported him missing and had come to the police station to file a report. However, they then saw him walking down Dresden Avenue from the East Liverpool Motor Lodge.
According to police, he had spent the night at the motel with a woman who then took his car and his credit cards.
The woman, Alyssa Beaver, age and address not reported, will be charged with receiving stolen property, driving under suspension and possession of drug abuse instruments in relation to needles reportedly found in her possession.
Her passenger, Jason Garland, was taken into custody on an outstanding warrant.
Detectives indicated the stolen car did not appear to be involved with the shooting incident, which remains under investigation.
Bobby-Gilbert writes for the East Liverpool Review.