Charleroi man attends truancy hearing, ends up in county jail
A Charleroi man was jailed Tuesday for allegedly carrying a concealed pocket knife into Charleroi Area High School.
School district police said David Michael Messinger, 23, of 1205 McKean Ave., Charleroi, showed up at a truancy hearing around 9:30 a.m. with his wife, Shanea, and began yelling obscenities.
The couple appeared before Magisterial District Judge Larry Hopkins in the second floor community room because of attendance issues with two elementary school students, according to Charleroi Area director of security Michael Kresich.
Hopkins traditionally conducts such hearings on site.
Kresich said David Messinger became “irate” during the hearing and was told to leave the building. However, no one knew Messinger was carrying a pocket knife in his pants pocket at the time, police said.
“I told him you can't swear in the building, you can't yell and you can't make threats, and he told me, ‘You're treating me like a (expletive) 2-year-old,'” Kresich said. “That's when he went outside and started screaming.”
Kresich said Messinger exited the school while “using loud and vulgar language” before yelling a harsh vulgarity outside the doorway.
Kresich said that after Messinger refused to stop, he arrested him.
Kresich said Shanea Messinger allegedly reached into the pocket of her husband's hoodie and was told to remove her hand immediately because the officer did not know if the man was carrying a weapon.
David Messinger responded, “I have a knife. I use it for protection,” said Kresich, who confiscated the folding knife from a pants pocket.
David Messinger was charged with misdemeanor counts of possession of a weapon on school property and disorderly conduct.
He was arraigned before Hopkins at 10:45 a.m. and sent to the Washington County Correctional Facility in lieu of $35,000 straight cash bond.
“I hope it sends a message to anybody else,” Kresich said of the bond amount.
“I heard other schools had similar situations, but I had concern what he might have done if the hearing didn't go the way he wanted it to go. To get that irate over an attendance situation, it was a little odd.”
Kresich said David Messinger, who is not listed in school records as the father of the two young students who were subjects of the hearing, had made calls to several staff members in the past couple days.
Shanea Messinger is the students' mother, Kresich said.
Kresich said he spoke to David Messinger over the phone Monday after district employees raised concerns.
The officer said that in the conversation, David Messinger told him, “‘When I come up to the school, I'm going to straighten some people out.'”
“He wasn't supposed to come to the hearing today,” Kresich said. “When I talked to him yesterday, he said he wasn't coming to the hearing and hung up.
“Once I found out he was there, I headed down and just wanted to nip some things in the bud.”
Kresich said the absence of metal detectors at the school is “a sore spot” with him and he hopes Tuesday's incident will spur the administration to consider installing them at entrances.
Acting Superintendent Reid Smith said the district might consider such measures, but was relieved the situation was handled without further incident.
“After 10 years (retirement), police in the hallways is a change to me. But these are different times, and I'm sure everything will be examined after today,” Smith said.
“(David Messinger's) language was terrible and, although it wasn't brandished, he did have a knife. He wasn't supposed to be in the building today, but our security people were on the ball. ... You just never know anymore. You have to be prepared for everything.”
Rick Bruni Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 724-684-2635.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Coke plant workers exposed to chemical
- Colleagues, friends remember Reis
- What does your body language reveal about you?
- Shooting investigation leads to large marijuana grow in Monessen
- Despite the weather, patriotism prevailed in Monessen in 1983
- Mon Valley Chamber fundraiser to offer encore for ‘Got Talent’
- Procrastation is a major financial deterrent
- Fallowfield Township increases road crew
- Pony World Series tradition continues at Washington
- ‘Sputzy,’ Monessen High ’60 graduates to reunite
- Woman marks 70 years on bench at Rostraver church’s organ