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Carbon man given state prison term for domestic assault incident

A Carbon County man was sentenced to a state prison term on Friday on a charge of aggravated assault for a domestic incident that occurred at a Carbon County campground. He was also sentenced on two counts of recklessly endangering another person.

John Walter Bogoski, 46, formerly of Lehighton, was sentenced by Judge Joseph J. Matika to serve a total of 14 to 60 months in a state correctional institution after the court rejected a request from Bogoski’s defense counsel to sentence him to a time-served or county term. He was given credit for 314 days already served. He previously pleaded guilty to the charges.

He was charged by state police at Lehighton with assaulting his then girlfriend at the Stonybrook campground in East Penn Township on Nov. 21, 2015. The police report indicated initial reports had a 40-caliber revolver being involved in the incident. The case took a long time getting before the court as there were 15 continuances filed in the matter.

Matika agreed with Assistant District Attorney Brian Gazo that a state prison term was appropriate considering the facts of the case.

Defense attorney Paul J. Levy told the court that Bogoski spent a considerable amount of time in prison. He was furloughed from the county prison and went to Florida for an inpatient rehabilitation program for an addiction problem.

Bogoski told the court, “I’m very, very sincerely sorry.” He said he hoped the victim, his then girlfriend, could get on with her life.

Gazo, however, reminded the court that there were two young children in the camper when the incident occurred. He said Bogoski displayed the revolver and fired a shot from it.

He also told the court Bogoski, when released from the rehab program in Florida, did not return to Pennsylvania as the furlough order said.

“If it wasn’t for him being stopped for a traffic violation he may never have come back.”

He said he was gone for over a year.

The victim testified to the physical and mental harm the incident did to her. She suffered a severe leg injury that required extensive medical treatment and substantial medical bills. She also spoke of the emotional damage the incident did to her and that she still gets nightmares about it. She said when the incident was happening and Bogoski was weaving the gun around, he was smiling.

She said, “To him it was a joke.”

She added, “I’m going to leave this courtroom a survivor not a victim.”

Gazo said the two recklessly endangering charges are for the two children who were present at the time.

In imposing the state term, Matika said Bogoski knew what he was doing at the time of the incident. Matika added another fact that determined his decision for a state prison sentence was that Bogoski went to Florida for help, but didn’t come back until apprehended by authorities.

Matika said the victim will have to live with the incident the rest of her life, adding, “Your conduct that evening could have killed her.”

In addition to the prison term, Bogoski was ordered to make total restitution for medical bills of $2,992.83 not covered by insurance. Gazo said the medical bills were over $140,000.

He was also ordered to get a mental health evaluation, have no contact with the victim, supply a DNA sample and pay court costs of about $1,000.