Penn Live reports:
A Pennsylvania man is in custody after police said he pointed a shotgun at two women and a police officer and attempted to enter a predominantly African-American church in Ambridge, Beaver County, Sunday morning.
Authorities reported to the intersection of Duss Avenue and Fourth Street shortly after 9 a.m. for a report of a man walking around with a long gun and wearing a camo vest.
The man, who was later identified as 38-year-old Jeffrey Harris, had pointed the firearm at two women and then attempted to enter Greater Dominion Church, located at the intersection of Fourth Street and Melrose Avenue.
Pittsburgh’s ABC affiliate reports:
Ambridge police learned from Beaver County Regional police that the suspect was in the 300 block of Merchant Street. He pointed his gun at an officer, who called in backup. Harris had on him a 12-gauge shotgun, 25 shotgun rounds and what was later determined to be crystal meth. He was taken back to Ambridge police headquarters, making “multiple bizarre comments” along the way to officers about a dead brother.
Officers determined that Harris’ shotgun had been recently fired. Police learned that Harris lives in a house in the 300 block of Duss Avenue along with his boyfriend. Neighbors told police that the boyfriend had not been seen in several days. Entry into the house was difficult, as the porch was smeared with a slippery substance, the complaint said. Police found an empty bottle of a personal lubricant on the porch.
CBS News reports:
The house “appeared ready for a standoff,” the complaint said. Investigators added, that while searching the home, they discovered a makeshift barrier to the front door, and a hole was drilled into a weapons case, which would have allowed Harris to “fire at the door from a protected position,” per the criminal complaint.
A blue notebook was found in the upstairs section of the home containing a “handwritten script” about active shooting. Once he became lucid, police said, Harris made no indication that he was going to commit a violent hate crime against anyone.
Harris faces nearly 10 charges, including attempted burglary, aggravated assault and terroristic threats. Harris’ bond was set at $975,000. A preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 5.
Bishop Kenneth Crumb said the suspect would have been able to get into the crowded church if he had arrived just one hour later for the Sunday service. https://t.co/lMFdu3BwqD
— The Patriot-News (@PatriotNews) August 29, 2023
Ambridge man arrested after pointing a long gun at 2 women & trying to enter a predominantly black church Sunday morning, “raising concern that the male was attempting to enter the church with a long gun to commit a hate crime.” @WTAE https://t.co/2SWALFjnOS
— Tori Yorgey WTAE (@toriyorgeytv) August 28, 2023