Clinton County Death Investigation

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SOUTH RENOVO -- It may be a case of a father trying to protect his daughter that led to a deadly shooting in Clinton County. State police say the victim was fighting with his wife at her father's house. That's when neighbors say the father fired his gun to protect his daughter.

As of now, no charges have been filed against that father, Gene Pizzino, 67. He's the one who neighbors say was protecting his daughter.

State police say he was trying to stop a physical fight between his daughter and her husband Monday night at his home in South Renovo, when Pizzino shot and killed the husband.

People who live on Clinton Avenue in South Renovo say it is normally a quiet neighborhood but Monday night was anything but peaceful.

State police say Pizzino shot and killed his son-in-law, Robert Bittner while Bittner was in a physical fight with Pizzino's daughter.

"I heard the ambulance out here, I saw them taking someone away. The street was just filled with cops," Amy McKissack said.

State police say Bittner and his wife, who live in York, were visiting Pizzino at his home in South Renovo. Investigators were called to the house two nights in a row because of fights between the couple.

Troopers say Pizzino tried to stop the fight and shot his son-in-law, who later died. Pizzino was questioned by state police and released. No charges have been filed. Some of Pizzino's neighbors do not think he should be charged.

"I just don't see him being in trouble for protecting his own daughter. I would say I'd probably do the same thing," Jim Fields said.

Neighbors say Gene Pizzino is very well-known in this neighborhood in South Renovo because he is a friendly guy who would go out of his way to help, not hurt people.

"He's a real nice guy, he stops and talks to you. He's not like a lot of other people who don't say hi. But ever since I've known him it's the way he's been," Fields said.

"He's a very sweet guy. When I moved in here he would come over and ask how things were going," McKissack said.

The Clinton County district attorney would not say if he plans to file charges against Gene Pizzino, only that the case is still under investigation.