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Preliminary hearing set for Palmerton man accused of assault, making threats

Published February 16. 2011 05:00PM

A Palmerton man who brandished a knife at his roommate with whom he shared an apartment was scheduled to appear before court.

A preliminary hearing was scheduled this morning for Joseph Easton, 23, of 346 Delaware Avenue, Apt. B, before District Judge Bruce Appleton of Palmerton.

Easton faces charges on two counts of terroristic threats and one count each of aggravated assault and simple assault. He is currently incarcerated in Carbon County Prison in lieu of $5,000 straight bail.

According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by patrolman Michael Fedor of the Palmerton Police Department:

Fedor was dispatched to the Blue Mountain Health Systems Palmerton Campus on Jan. 20 at 2:17 a.m. for a report of an assault, according to the affidavit.

Fedor said he spoke with the victim in the hospital emergency room, the affidavit says. The victim stated he was assaulted by Easton, who was seated in the waiting room.

The victim then provided a written statement that at about 1:40 a.m., he was at his residence, which he shared with Easton. The victim stated Easton had returned home from drinking.

They were watching a movie, and Easton began pinching the victim's chest. This escalated to Easton punching and kicking the victim about the head and neck to the point the victim lost consciousness.

At one point, the victim bit Easton on the back to try to stop him. Easton then went into the kitchen and returned with a butcher knife, at which time he threatened to stab the victim.

Easton got within a foot of the victim, and stabbed the knife into the wall in the hallway. The victim convinced Easton that he needed to go to the hospital.

Easton accompanied the victim, and threatened to kill the victim's mother, if he contacted the police.

The victim had visible swelling and discoloration to his right eye.

Easton was mirandized and admitted to punching the victim once in the face.

Fedor said he went to the residence and observed a 13-inch butcher knife lying on a chair in the victim's bedroom. The knife had a white powder substance extending five-eights of an inch from the tip.

Fedor also said he observed a hole on the right side of the hallway wall that was consistent with the size and shape of the knife recovered.

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