Girardville policeman shoots assailant
GIRARDVILLE - State police filed charges Friday against a man who was shot by the Girardville police officer he was allegedly assaulting earlier that morning.
According to police, Patrolman Melville Tomeo shot Carmen T. Almonti, 31, during the incident about 1:45 a.m. in the area outside Tomeo's 120 Line St. home. Almonti was hit twice during the altercation and taken by ambulance to Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, for treatment.
State police Trooper Melissa Kyper of the Frackville station charged Almonti with one felony count of aggravated assault; misdemeanor offenses including two counts of simple assault and one count each of recklessly endangering another person and resisting arrest; and one summary count of harassment.
Kyper said the incident began when Nicole Ervolino came to the Girardville police station to report a domestic assault.
Tomeo, who was on duty at the time, took the woman back to the home where she said the assault occurred and, upon arriving, met Almonti, who was outside. Kyper said Tomeo lowered the window on the police cruiser to speak with Almonti, who almost immediately struck the officer in the head.
Almonti continued to hit Tomeo despite being ordered to stop. At that time, Kyper said Tomeo used his Taser against Almonti, but the man continued to ignore commands and aggressively resisted the officer.
Tomeo then discharged his weapon and hit Almonti twice, Kyper said.
Kyper said that, despite being shot, Almonti still refused to obey and continued to act aggressively. When officers from neighboring communities arrived, the man continued to resist, refused to lie on the ground and had to be Tasered again.
At the scene, Kyper said Ervolino reported being at home watching a movie and that she fell asleep. Ervolino shares the home with Almonti. The woman said she was awakened by Almonti, who was in a "crazed" state, throwing items around the living room and then throwing her to the floor.
Ervolino said Almonti tried to grab her daughters, and she felt he was going to kill her, Kyper said.
Ervolino fled the home with her daughters and flagged down a motorist, who drove her to the police station.
Kyper said Ervolino witnessed Almonti strike Tomeo through the window of the police cruiser and confirmed that she heard officers yelling commands to him to roll over.
Kyper said that, when placed in handcuffs, Almonti continued to act belligerent. During transport to Geisinger, he said he had consumed methamphetamine that night.
After the assault, Tomeo was taken to a Pottsville hospital for treatment of injuries he suffered.
The charges against Altmonti were filed with Magisterial District Judge Anthony J. Kilker, Shenandoah, who issued a warrant for Almonti's arrest. The warrant will be served and Almonti arraigned after being released from the hospital.
Almonti, after formally arraigned, will have to appear for a preliminary hearing before Magisterial District Judge Christina E. Hale, Frackville.