Domestic incident results in arrest

Staff Writer

A domestic incident that occurred early Wednesday morning resulted in charges against a Johnsonburg man.
According to an affidavit of probable cause that was filed at the office of Magisterial District Judge James L. Martin on Wednesday, Wesley Adam Plants, 35, of 135 Mary Street, Johnsonburg, is facing charges following an alleged verbal/physical altercation.
At 4:57 a.m., an officer with the Johnsonburg Borough Police Department was called to the residence after receiving a report of a domestic in progress. Arriving on scene, an officer spoke with an individual identified in the affidavit only by the initials “R. F.,” who stated that Plants was her “significant partner” and that they had gotten into a verbal/physical altercation. R. F. also told the officer that Plants was allegedly in an upstairs bathroom and that he had a gun.
The officer asked R. F. if anyone else was in the house at the time, and she stated that two minor children were present. R. F. was asked if she could safely get the children out of the residence, and she said that she could.
The officer then requested an additional unit from either St. Marys or Ridgway to assist. When the other units arrived on scene, Plants was asked to come out of the bathroom. He reportedly did so willingly, without a gun in sight. Plants was placed in investigatory detention so further investigation could be conducted.
R. F. was then interviewed by officers. She stated that she and Plants had gotten into a verbal argument that morning which continued to escalate. At one point, Plants was in the bathroom and they were arguing through the door. R. F. stated that Plants then exited the bathroom and threatened her, at which time she ran into her daughter’s bedroom and hid in the closet. Plants pursued her and they got into an argument again in the bedroom.
R. F. stated that Plants took an aluminum crutch and struck her over the right wrist, causing swelling and pain in her wrist/forearm area. The officer witnessed noticeable swelling and photographs were taken of her injury. An aluminum crutch that was snapped in half was also reportedly recovered at the scene.
R. F. also stated that Plants had smashed the screen on her phone and then grabbed a gun and “racked the action.” According to the affidavit, R. F. stated that “the sound scared her, and she felt threatened that he would use it on her. She also said that he was yelling come out from wherever you’re hiding I’m going to kill you.”
Plants then reportedly returned to the bathroom with the firearm and locked the door.
It was at that time that police arrived on scene.
After taking R. F.’s statement and gathering evidence, officers placed Plants under arrest.
R. F. was transported to Penn Highlands Elk for treatment of her injuries. Plants was transported to the Johnsonburg Police Station and advised of his Miranda Rights.
According to the affidavit, Plants stated that he and R. F. got into a verbal argument over him allegedly cheating on her. He stated that R. F. was “calling him names and criticizing him.” He also alleged that when he went into the bathroom to get ready for work, R. F. continued to yell at him through the closed door.
Plants stated that he came out of the bathroom and yelled something at R. F., at which time she ran into their daughter’s bedroom. He reportedly admitting to pursuing her and found her hiding in the closet. Plants also admitted to arguing with R. F. but denied hitting her with the crutch. Instead, he reportedly claimed “to have hit the crutch on the ground several times until it broke in half.”
Plants then returned to the bathroom, but he denied ever getting a firearm. He also “denied ever threatening the victim but did state that he told her to go kill herself.”
Police recovered two handguns that R. F. said were used. They were reportedly found in the bedroom closet mixed in with clothing on the top shelf. Both firearms were seized and photographed.
Plants was arraigned before Judge Martin at 9:45 a.m.
He is facing a second-degree misdemeanor charge of simple assault and a summary charge of harassment–subject other to physical contact.
Bail was set at $5,000 monetary. Unable to post bail, Plants was incarcerated at Elk County Prison.
A preliminary hearing for Plants is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 5 before Judge Martin.