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Lansford man charged with risking catastrophe

Published December 15. 2011 05:01PM

Patrick Kelly Jr., 25, of 19 E. Kline Ave., Lansford, faces charges from an incident which took place at 10:56 a.m. Nov. 21 at 20 E. Kline Ave. Charges of causing or risking a catastrophe and two counts of disorderly conduct were filed by Officer Jason Helmer.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, here's what happened:

Helmer received a phone call at the police station about Kelly dumping gasoline on something and then setting it on fire in the driveway at 19 E. Kline Ave.

Upon arrival, Helmer spoke with three witnesses who said Kelly poured gasoline from a gas can onto an object and lit it. They said Kelly then walked across the street, laughing, and threw the object onto the front porch of 18 E. Kline Ave., which is his father's house.

Helmer checked the porch and found a small, partially burned Knoebel's Amusement Park picture lying under a wicker chair. He noted the porch is built of old wood, covered by outdoor carpeting and attached to a neighboring dwelling.

While Helmer was talking with the witnesses, Kelly Jr. came out of his house at 19 E. Kline Ave, shouting that "everything was bull!"

He continued to be uncooperative and created unreasonable noise after being warned to stop several times. He then started kicking the passenger side of a vehicle that was parked in the area, and was arrested.

Helmer checked the driveway of Kelly Jr.'s house and found a wet area on the concrete that smelled strongly of gasoline.

Kelly Jr. admitted setting the picture on fire and throwing it on his father's porch, but the fire was stomped out before he threw it on the porch. Kelly Jr. said he did what he did because his father was harassing him and wouldn't stop.

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