The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

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State News

June 29, 2014

State briefs 6/30/2014

Convicted felon stabs 2 at senior high-rise

SPRINGDALE – A 73-year-old man with a long record of felony convictions has been jailed on attempted homicide and other charges after police said he stabbed two women at a senior citizens high-rise in Allegheny County.

Online court records don’t list an attorney for Charles Azim, who remained jailed Sunday. Those records also indicate Azim has a criminal record dating to 1971 for robbery, assault and other crimes

– including an eight-year prison sentence he received in 2000 for aggravated assault.

Allegheny County Housing Authority officials contend Azim passed a background check before he was allowed to move into Springdale Manor about seven years ago, and it wasn’t immediately clear how that occurred, or whether he had received an early release from his final prison term before moving into the building.

Cops: Vendor shoots woman at gun show

BLOOMSBURG – A vendor accidentally shot a woman in the leg while demonstrating a gun and holster at a central Pennsylvania gun show, police said.

The Columbia County district attorney’s office will determine whether the vendor, Geoffrey Hawk, will face criminal charges stemming from the shooting Saturday at the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds, Officer Brad Sharrow said.

Hawk, 44, of Warminster, didn’t immediately return calls Sunday to his cellphone and business, In Case of Emergency Enterprises. He was manning a booth for his business at the Eagle Arms Gun show at the time of the shooting.

Hawk told police he thought the gun was unloaded when he demonstrated a concealed-carry wallet holster to the woman, Krista Gearhart, 25, of Orangeville.

Gearhart was treated at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville for a thigh wound and released.

Hawk told police he had done the same demonstration about 20 times without incident before the shooting, “racking” the gun’s slide to clear it

of bullets each time, Sharrow said.

Police said Hawk told them he had left the gun on display when he completed background checks on some customers and believes it’s possible someone loaded the gun when he was busy.


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