Police: Man strangled Pa. firefighter, kicked cop at apartment fire
Jerome George Williamson, 49, was allegedly “highly intoxicated” and screamed at the Plymouth firefighter before lunging towards him
By Ed Lewis
The Times Leader, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
PLYMOUTH, Pa. — Borough police arrested a man they say strangled a firefighter and kicked an officer in the groin Wednesday.
Jerome George Williamson, 49, was “highly intoxicated” when he showed up at his apartment building at 232 Vine St., as firefighters were battling a blaze inside the building just after 4 p.m., according to court records.
Police had earlier evacuated the building of other tenants.
Williamson got close to the apartment building and screamed at a firefighter standing at the top of the stairs and next to a fully charged interior attack hose. Williamson refused to back up and lunged at the firefighter who was pushed into other firefighters, court records say.
Police in court records say Williamson then strangled the firefighter with both hands before he was shoved and fell down stairs.
After Williamson was handcuffed, he was taken to a cruiser where he sat on the rear seat with his legs outside.
Williamson then kicked an officer in the groin, court records say.
Police said Williamson’s behavior impeded the performance and efforts by firefighters as they actively battled the blaze.
A dog was rescued from the building by firefighters.
Williamson was arraigned Thursday in Luzerne County Central Court on two counts each of aggravated assault, simple assault and harassment and one count each of obstructing emergency services, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness. He was jailed at the county correctional facility for lack of $20,000 bail.
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