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Dawson mayor denies she was looking for fight

Mary Pickels
| Friday, May 21, 2010

Dawson Mayor Carol Capella said she did not accompany borough resident Amanda Shultz to Melissa Jones' Laughlin Street residence Tuesday evening looking for a fight.

What she said began as a peaceful conversation about recent acts of vandalism in the borough ended in a physical confrontation. No one was seriously injured in the 8:50 p.m. incident.

State police at Belle Vernon said Wednesday that Capella, 43, Shultz, 27, Jones, 36, and Capella's son, borough Councilman Michael Capella, 23, all face charges of harassment and disorderly conduct. Carol Capella and Jones were both listed as accused and victims on a police news release. Shultz and Michael Capella were listed as accused.

Carol Capella said there have been two recent incidents of pellet gun shooting in the borough, the most recent Monday night. She said Shultz's vehicle and two of her own vehicles were damaged.

Carol Capella said she and Shultz informed Jones that state police were contacted about the incidents and that they might be talking to her son about his possible involvement.

"This is all alleged," Capella said Thursday. She said she was not accusing Jones' son.

"She was very nice to me," Capella said.

When her son arrived home and learned where she was, Capella said, he joined her.

"We were getting ready to leave, and neighbors were gathering," Capella said.

She said Jones "panicked."

"There were a lot of words going back and forth," she said.

Then, Capella said, Jones "smacked me right up side the head."

"She's grabbing at my hair and ripped my earrings out," Capella said. "My son said, 'I can't believe you just hit my mother.' "

The two then fell to the ground, she said, until Capella was pulled from Jones.

"I'm not here to fight," Capella said yesterday. "I'm here to help this town. It was made to sound like we ran as a posse after this woman. That's not what happened."

Capella said more information about the incident will be made public at a preliminary hearing.

Calls to Jones yesterday were not returned.

Police said charges will be filed before District Judge Dwight Shaner, after which the hearing will be scheduled.

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