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Police Investigate Worthington 'Shooting' That Maybe Wasn't

Last updated on Monday, May 7, 2012

(WORTHINGTON) - What initially seemed like a shooting in Worthington on Friday evening apparently — maybe - wasn’t.

Mark Stalcup, of the Greene County Daily World, reports that nearly three hours after police scrambled to the scene of what was initially believed to be a 7:45 p.m. altercation between two neighbors which ended in gunfire, the facts of what happened remained unclear.

Multiple law enforcement departments scrambled units to Worthington, seeking a man they initially believed might have shot his neighbor, and then hid in a wooded area.

K-9 units, detectives and SWAT units were initially contacted from cities as far away as Linton and Bloomington, though those units were called off around 9 p.m.

Now, however, police are questioning that story, said Worthington Town Marshal Don Richardson.

Still sought by police for questioning in the 7:45 p.m. incident is William R. Arthur, 50, of Worthington.

"We don't have any reason to believe he is armed and dangerous," Richardson said. "However, if anyone sees him they should still report him to the police and let us handle it."

Richardson said the victim, whom he did not name, contends there was gunfire. However, police are skeptical. "We don't believe at this time there was a shooting," Richardson said. "We do have a man with injuries who is being treated at this time. He claims there was a shooting."

Greene County Sheriff Terry Pierce, briefed by his deputies on the scene and awaiting further details Friday evening, concurred.

"I think it was reported somebody had been shot, but they weren't shot, actually," Pierce said. "That made it sound much worse than it was initially. I think there was some type of altercation, and there was alcohol involved."

Richardson said the unidentified injured man was a neighbor of Arthur's, adding his injuries have left police unable to question him extensively. Nor are police clear what spurred the alleged argument.

"Not at this time," Richardson said. "Due to the nature of his injuries, we have been unable to talk to the victim very much. He just can't talk at this time."
The victim was taken to Greene County General Hospital, where his condition is presently unknown.

Pierce said Arthur is known to police for multiple prior arrests including domestic battery and protective order violations.

He was in Greene Circuit Court and sentenced to 62 days in jail, with credit for time served, on a domestic violence charge March 14. Per the court record, he had violated terms of a prior suspended sentence.

"I'm sure they will keep looking for him," Pierce said.

Anyone who sees Arthur is encouraged to contact local law enforcement at 384-441.

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