NORTH HUNTINGDON TWP., Pa. - A North Huntingdon woman was arraigned on Thursday on charges she threatened to burn down a police officer's home while she was in the Westmoreland County Courthouse.
Erin L. Smith, 36, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Aug. 7 on a terroristic threat charge.
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Smith made the threat to Penn Township Patrolman Lewis Lock shortly after 11 a.m. Wednesday in a hallway outside a courtroom, Irvin Shipley, a county sheriff's deputy, said.
“‘I'm going to burn your house down, (expletive),'” Smith told Lock, according to an affidavit.
Smith made the threat after Lock and fellow Penn Township Officer Patrick Schwer left the courtroom, where a summary appeal hearing on traffic offenses was held for Smith's boyfriend, Allen Delgross, court records show.
After the alleged threat was made, Lock summoned Shipley.
Smith repeated the threat when Shipley arrived to investigate in the hallway, according to court papers.
Smith said, “He's mad because I said I was going to burn his house down,” the affidavit said. “This is (expletive). He has something against my family.”
District Judge James Albert told Smith during her arraignment that where she allegedly made the threat made the situation worse.
“When you do it in a courthouse, I look at it even more seriously,” Albert said.
Authorities took Smith into custody after discovering three outstanding warrants against her, including one issued by a county judge because Smith failed to appear for a court hearing last month, court records show.
The other two warrants centered on traffic cases before Penn Township District Judge Helen Kistler, according to court records.
Albert set Smith's bail at $10,000. She remains jailed on the other warrants.
Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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