Police investigating possible intimidation case

July 25, 2007|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Police in Washington Township, Pa., confirmed Tuesday that a firefighter is being investigated for possibly using blue lights to intimidate a motorist four days earlier.

The man could face charges of stalking, disorderly conduct and misuse of the blue lights for the incident that occurred around 11:10 p.m. Friday, Officer Bryan Chappell said.

He has not completed his investigation and no charges have been filed.

Until Tuesday, police refused to release even the date and nature of the incident when questioned by The Herald-Mail.

A woman has alleged the man, who was driving a sport utility vehicle, was traveling east on Pa. 16 at a high rate of speed. She said he came so close to her vehicle that she couldn't see his headlights in her rearview mirror, Chappell said.

The man allegedly activated the blue lights on his vehicle, causing her to slow down as he passed her and pointed at her, Chappell said.


"Apparently, there are several different stories being told now, so I need to reinterview the victim," Chappell said.

A female passenger was in the SUV, and two small children were with the victim when the incident occurred west of Zullinger, Pa., Chappell said.

He confirmed that the suspect is a member of a Franklin County, Pa., fire department, but did not identify which one.

No calls had been made to township police about similar circumstances that night, he said.

Chappell said he was involved in a similar case on Dec. 19, 2006.

Five people were charged with using red and blue lights to pull over Chappell when he was off duty and driving on Pa. 997 near Tomstown Road.

Chappell pulled over when he thought an unmarked state police cruiser sped up behind him. That vehicle, and another smaller one, drove off and were followed by the officer.

He eventually detained the occupants of the smaller vehicle after it crashed through a fence and had mechanical problems.

The affidavit of probable cause in that case alleges the group had earlier planned to try to pull over vehicles using a red key chain and a blue pen light.

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