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Threats get man eight months in jail

April 13, 2001

Threats get man eight months in jail



A Funkstown man who threatened to blow up his home during a six-hour standoff with police in November was sentenced Thursday to serve eight months in jail for reckless endangerment.

Dennis Eugene Shank Sr., 51, of 106 E. Maple St., was sentenced in Washington County District Court to four years in prison for the offense, according to court records. But Judge Noel Spence suspended all of the sentence but the eight-month jail term.

Shank was also ordered to serve three years probation upon his release, according to court records.

Shank was armed with a gun on Nov. 27, 2000, when he barricaded himself inside his home, which was full of natural gas, police said. Residents in the area were evacuated from their homes while members of the Washington County Special Response Team tried to convince Shank to give himself up. He eventually surrendered peacefully.

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Several weeks later, police and firefighters were called to battle a blaze at Shank's Maple Street home.

On Dec. 15, Shank was charged with first-degree arson and threat to burn in connection with the fire at his house. That case is pending in Washington County Circuit Court.

Fire officials said that the December fire caused an estimated $50,000 in damage.

On April 6, Deputy Washington County State's Attorney Charles Strong said that Shank's attorney had filed a "not criminally responsible" motion and the case was postponed so he could be evaluated.

- Marlo Barnhart

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