The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

April 4, 2013

Jurors selected to hear standoff case

EBENSBURG — A jury of six men and six women was chosen Thursday to hear the case of a Portage man charged in a standoff with police last year.

The trial of Anthony Wayne Moyer will be before Cambria County Judge Linda Fleming. The trial is set for Tuesday and is expected to wrap up in one day.

Assistant District Attorney Kevin Persio and defense attorneys Thomas Dickey and David Kaltenbaugh selected the jury on Thursday.

The prosecution likely will be brief, with witnesses limited to three people: Portage police Chief Ed Miller, Officer Donald Wyar and a resident.

Police charged Moyer, 51, after he allegedly pointed a gun at an officer who was responding to an incident at a Caldwell Avenue home in January 2012.

Miller said at the time that Moyer was banging on the door of the home, where a relative of his is believed to have lived at the time, around 10:30 p.m. He would not stop, so the woman called borough police.

Before officers arrived, Moyer retreated to his own home nearby.

A Portage officer and a Summerhill Township police officer called as backup went to Moyer’s home. He began talking to the officers through a window.

Miller later said that Moyer was trying to entice the officers, telling them, “Come in, I have something for you.”

Then Moyer suddenly and without provocation pointed a handgun in the face of the Portage officer, the chief said.

Probation for fire plea

A plea was reached in another case Thursday just before a jury was to be selected for the trial of a Cresson Township man.

John Joseph Saparo, 58, whose address is listed as the 100 block of Railroad Street, Lilly, entered a no contest plea to risking a catastrophe as the result of allegations against him involving a fire last year.

Saparo had been charged with arson and related offenses, recklessly endangering another person and filing a false report with law enforcement.

Police alleged that Saparo intentionally set fire to his Railroad Street home in midsummer. He told police a dog caused the fire by knocking over a fan.

Cambria County President Judge Timothy Creany immediately sentenced Saparo to five years probation.

Saparo was described in court as an alcoholic working on recovery. Creany ordered him to continue to attend Alcoholics Anonymous sessions two to three times a week during his probation.

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