New Castle News

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February 27, 2014

Man wanted for assaulting, terrorizing woman at wedding reception

NEW CASTLE — A North Hill man is wanted for allegedly assaulting and terrorizing a woman who was attending a wedding reception.

The woman was with a toddler at the time.

Neshannock police said the woman was at a banquet center in Neshannock Township with a 2-year-old around 10 p.m. Saturday when she noticed Justin James Clark there. She told police that Clark, 30, of 130 E. Winter Ave., had threatened to kill her in the past.

She reported she had left immediately, but Clark followed her to her car in the parking lot and told her they were going to talk. She said he grabbed the 2-year-old from her and said he was taking him. Clark then followed her to her sport utility vehicle, grabbed her arm and wrestled the keys out of her clothing where she had hidden them, she told police.

She said he punched her in the head and pushed her into the car, then she jumped out and ran from him but he drove up to her and told her to get in or he would kill her.

The woman reported she complied, and Clark drove south on Wilmington Road while punching her on the side of the head and pulling out clumps of her hair.

She said they approached a stop sign and she opened the door to get out but Clark accelerated and pushed her out of the car.

She landed on her side on the pavement in the middle of Highland Avenue, she reported.

The woman told police she tried to call 911 from a cellphone, but Clark had turned the car around and drove at her, jumping the curb and trying to run her over.

She said he then drove into a row of evergreens and a wooden fence.

The woman told police Clark then got out of the car, tackled her and pushed her face into a snow pile, then grabbed her hair and pulled her by the hair back into the car.

He then drove to a service station on Highland Avenue.

Meanwhile, the county 911 center called the cellphone back several times and he became more enraged, the woman told police.

Clark drove toward New Wilmington and told her he was going to drive until they ran out of gas, then he was going to kill her. She said he kept smacking her in the mouth, and she jumped into the back seat with the child. He pulled off the road and got into the back seat, she told police, then bit both of her arms and choked her.

She said she begged for her life and asked him not to kill her.

He then got back into the driver’s seat and drove back to New Castle, she said, and stopped at another convenience store on Highland Avenue.

The woman reported she got out of the car with the child, ran into the store and asked the clerk to call 911. Then Clark entered the store and smacked her on the head several times, ordering her to get back into the car, she said.

The store clerk tried to calm Clark down but did not call 911, the woman told police.

He then forced her back into the car and said they were going back to the wedding reception. He drove back to the banquet center, parked and gave the woman the keys to move the car. When a police cruiser drove up, he threatened that she had better not say anything or he would give the police a bigger reason to be there, she told officers.

She said she parked next to the police car, but no one was in it. She said she then drove away to a safe location and called 911.

Police have charged Clark with aggravated assault, terroristic threats, kidnapping, unlawful restraint, false imprisonment, stalking, criminal mischief, theft for allegedly taking her cellphone, receiving stolen property, harassment, two counts of simple assault, two counts of recklessly endangering another person, driving with a suspended license and not using car restraint systems.

District Judge Scott McGrath has issued a warrant for his arrest.

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