by Geoff Rushton
A Bellefonte man is facing charges after police say he pointed a gun at a woman he was with in a Beaver Stadium parking lot.
According to a criminal complaint, a Penn State police officer was dispatched at 5:35 p.m. on Saturday to football parking lot 12 for a report of a domestic altercation. A woman told police that she and Austin A. Swanger, 23, had been at the Penn State-Indiana game when she confronted Swanger about a text message from an unknown number on his cell phone.
Police said the two left the game and walked to their truck in the parking lot, where Swanger got in the driver’s seat and reportedly took out a .357 caliber handgun from the door pocket. When the woman opened the passenger side door, Swanger allegedly was holding the gun at waist level and pointing it at her. According to the complaint, he told her to get in the truck twice and she refused.
The woman told police she slammed the door shut and Swanger began to move the truck. She was able to remove belongings from the back seat then began to walk away to contact police. As she was walking away, Swanger allegedly backed out, drove to her and made a verbal threat about their pets before driving away.
Pennsylvania State Police at Rockview were advised of Swanger’s home address and took him into custody. He was transferred to the Penn State police station where the .357 handgun was reportedly seized from the truck.
Police said Swanger waived his rights and agreed to be interviewed. He allegedly admitted to the getting into the argument, walking to his car and pointing the gun in the woman’s vicinity, as well as asking her to get into the truck.
Swanger was charged with misdemeanor counts of terroristic threats, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person and disorderly conduct and a summary count of harassment.
He was arraigned on Sunday morning before District Judge Allen Sinclair and bail was set at $50,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 11.