Hot Springs Community Rallies Around Assaulted Veteran

HOT SPRINGS (KTVH) — There has been an outpouring from the Hot Springs community after an elderly veteran was beaten and robbed at his home earlier this month.

Hot Springs Police said 74-year-old Jack Milton was already living in humble conditions but was left with nothing after three men brutally beat him and took the few belongings he had.

Authorities said the 74-year-old man was attacked by suspects who hit him with blunt objects as he answered the door on Dec. 11. (Photo courtesy: Hot Springs Police Department)

“He’s living and sleeping on a mattress on the floor,” veteran and Arkansas Dept. of Workforce Services Veteran Representative Stephen Ezelle said.
“He’s got a TV but no cable, but he deals with the fuzziness.”

Police said on Tuesday, Dec. 11, the army veteran opened his door when three young men knocked asking for directions.

That’s when police said they forced their way into Milton’s one-room flat, brutally beating him and taking his bare necessities like blankets, his ID, and the food for his dog.

“Not my veteran, it can’t be this way,” Ezelle said.

Now other fellow veterans, including Jackson House volunteer Terri Pilcher, are coming to Milton’s aid.

“Being a veteran, I think my first thought was shame on us,” Pilcher said. “As a community, as a country, we’re better than this.”

Hot Springs community members are hoping to make Milton’s flat feel like a home again by donating food, kitchenware, and clothing.

“We just need to be kind to our fellow man, and this man has not been treated kindly, and that’s a shame,” Pilcher said.

Ezelle has been coordinating the efforts to make sure he gets everything he needs.

“Since yesterday, I had been on this thing for nearly 24 hours now trying to circulate the information about getting help from all kinds of agencies,” Ezelle said.

But, Milton’s living situation is going to get better.

Hot Springs police set up an account in his name, Jack W. Milton, at Arvest Bank so people can make donations.

The non-profit organization Jackson House is also working to get him a cell phone and refrigerator. Another volunteer is going to bring him dog food whenever he needs more.

“We jump together and help out whenever anyone needs help,” resident Kim Ocker said.

Ezelle hopes to eventually help Milton move to a safer location.
But for now, he hopes the community’s support will make him feel a little bit more at ease.

“His rent is now taken care of for next month due to the giving of the Jackson House, and I’m very excited about that,” Ezelle said.

The Hot Springs Police Department is still looking for the three men responsible. If you have any information, detectives ask that you contact the Hot Springs Police Department directly.

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