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Police: Man chased shoppers from store

Published February 12. 2014 12:41PM

An 81-year-old Nesquehoning man was arrested after he chased customers out of a borough grocery store, police say.

John Barna faces charges of resisting arrest, persistent disorderlyconduct, and public drunkenness.

According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by Patrolman Steven Homanko with District Judge Casimir Kosciolek, here's whathappened:

Homanko was sent to Redner's Warehouse Market at 5:09 p.m. Feb. 8 on a report of an unwantedperson.

When he arrived, he saw Barna, whom he recognized from previous encounters, sitting on a bench near where customers were entering and exiting the store.

Barna was yelling, "You will get yours!"

Homanko told him three times to stop. While Barna was yelling, Homanko noticed that his eyes were bloodshot, that he was stumbling over his words, and that he smelled of alcohol.

Homanko again told Barna to stop or he would be arrested.

Barna didn't stop. Instead, he got up and tried to chase two customers out of the store. Homanko told Barna he was under arrest, and tried to take him into custody.

Barna said he was not being placed under arrest, and started swinging his arms away. Homanko had to use substantial forceto overcome Barna's actions.

He was arraigned before Kosciolek and released after posting $50,000 straight cash bail.

Barna on April 5, 2012 filed a federal lawsuitin U.S. District Court, Scranton, against several then-current and former school directors claiming they violated his civil rights when they barred him from school property in October of 2011.

Board members argued that Barna threatened them.

The suit was against school board members Koreen Nalesnik, Anthony DeMarco, David Hiles, William Hunsicker and Jeff Markovich, and former members Donna Trimmel and Anthony Pondish.

The school board on Dec. 6, 2012 rejected a settlement with Barna proposed by its insurance carrier.

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