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City police capture Melcroft man after foot chase Tuesday

| Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2011

A Melcroft man is in prison after he fled from a state constable and Connellsville police Tuesday morning.

At 9:40 a.m. Tuesday, Pennsylvania State Constable J.T. Sowers observed Harry Delford Swope, 38, of 305 Fowl Hill Rd., in a Chevrolet Cavalier at the Connellsville McDonalds. When Sowers attempted to serve a warrant on Swope, the man allegedly refused to exit the Cavalier and told the constable that he was going to blow his head off. Police said Swope reportedly reached under the car seat.

Swope then put his Cavalier in reverse and backed into Sower's vehicle.

Sowers followed Swope to Poplar Street where Swope fled on foot.

The Connellsville Police Department was contacted to check the area. He was found attempting to hide in the weeds in a wooded area behind Poplar Street.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, Swope immediately stood up and said he was not going in with anyone and he would turn himself in later.

"I advised him that was not an option at this time and he needed to stop running and come with me," said Capt. Steven Shaffer with the Connellsville Police, adding that Swope yelled an obscenity and continued to run.

Shaffer, Sowers and other police chased Swope through the wooded area. Swope continued to yell obscenities at officers and also threatened to "split their heads open."

Swope picked up three large rocks and threw them at police.

Swope was taken into custody a short time later by city police and charged at District Judge Ronald Haggerty Jr.'s office with aggravated assault, simple assault, resisting arrest, terroristic threats, disorderly conduct, criminal mischief, driving with a suspended license, improperly backing up a vehicle and reckless driving .

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled at 1:15 p.m. Sept. 29 at Haggerty's office.

Swope is lodged in the Fayette County Prison in lieu of $15,000 bond.

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