The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Latest News

December 21, 2013

Top 10 of 2013 | SUV blast levels Clearfield Twp. home

PATTON — The Tribune-Democrat is counting down the top stories of 2013, as determined by voting by newsroom employees. One story will appear each day in print and e-editions between now and the end of the year. Readers can vote for their choice for the top story at www.tribdem.com/beststories.

A family home along Kepshire Road in Clearfield Township was leveled just before 9 a.m. on March 19 when a man rammed it with an SUV loaded with explosive materials and hit the detonator.

One was killed – the driver – and a father and son inside the home were injured.

Authorities identified the man as Bradley Gene Kollar, 40, of Hastings.

Sources told The Tribune-Democrat that Kollar’s actions were an act of revenge – Kollar believed it was one of the victims, William Shaner, who divulged incriminating information about him to police, leading to a March 2012 raid on the Kollar residence and his subsequent arrest.

On the morning of the explosion, Kollar was scheduled to be sentenced on charges of receiving stolen heavy equipment and possession of chemicals used to cook meth, levied after the raid. He was a no-show.

Instead, he was approaching the Shaner residence with a bomb not long after Shaner’s young children had hopped on the school bus. Kollar reportedly called the Shaner home just before the blast.

“I got you now, you snitch,” he was quoted in a search warrant as saying to Shaner.

The explosion was reportedly felt as far as four miles away, in neighboring Ashville Borough. The Shaner family’s house was almost entirely disintegrated – tufts of Fiberglas insulation, carried by strong winds, dotted homeowners’ yards and neighboring fields in all directions.

As the investigation continued, details demonstrating Kollar’s mental state were revealed, including his previous suicide attempt with a 1,600-pound ammonia bomb.

Although William Shaner and his teenage son, Ryan, were transported to Altoona Regional after the blast – William in critical condition – both recovered. Through donation drives and community funds, residents and businesses banded together to help replace what the Shaner family lost that day.

In July, Bradley Kollar’s father, John, was sentenced to six to 23 months house arrest on charges stemming from the 2012 police raid.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News
Poll

What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results
Order Photos


Photo Slideshow

House Ads