Mount Carmel teen waives hearing
MOUNT CARMEL - Crystal Nicole Clark, who is accused of attacking her boyfriend with a knife last week after being released from a juvenile shelter, was ordered to appear for a pre-trial conference in January after waiving her right to a preliminary hearing Wednesday afternoon before Magisterial District Judge Hugh Jones.
The 17-year-old Mount Carmel resident will now wait to see if her attorney, Paige Rosini, is successful in having the adult case transferred to juvenile court.
The teen was heard humming and sobbing at different times while in a small room next to Jones' courtroom waiting approximately two hours for her turn before the judge.
State Constable Larry Rompallo warned Clark to stop humming and sobbing because it was disrupting other court proceedings.
After conferring with her lawyer, Clark decided to give up her right to a hearing so the case could proceed to the Court of Common Pleas, where Rosini is expected to file a petition with Judge Charles H. Saylor to transfer the case to juvenile court before her client's pre-trial conference scheduled for Jan. 4.
Clark was charged as an adult by Mount Carmel Patrolman Matthew Dillman with two felony counts of aggravated assault, misdemeanors of simple assault and recklessly endangering another person, and a summary of harassment in connection with incidents that occurred between 1:47 and 3:30 p.m. Nov. 5 at 44 W. Second St.
Clark is accused of entering the home of Dillon Pellegrino and punching him in the face. Police said Pellegrino's earring was ripped out of his right ear during the alleged assault.
Police said Clark then allegedly went to the kitchen, grabbed a knife with an 8-inch blade and went after the victim upstairs, where Pellegrino had barricaded himself in a bedroom. Pellegrino told police Clark was able to get in and began hitting him before being pulled off the victim by her mother, Stacey Brogan, and David Yates, who also lives in the residence. Yates told police he was able to grab the knife from Clark.
At a hearing Tuesday, Saylor dismissed a motion to transfer the case from adult to juvenile court because the petition filed by Rosini was premature.
Saylor explained at the outset that new state rules of criminal procedure, which became effective Nov. 1, require that a motion requesting transfer from criminal to juvenile proceedings be filed after the defendant's preliminary hearing.
If the felony offense of aggravated assault to intentionally cause serious bodily injury would have been dismissed or withdrawn at Wednesday's preliminary hearing, the case could have been transferred to juvenile court since the other charges don't warrant Clark being charged as an adult. But after conferring with Northumberland County Assistant District Attorney William Cole, Rosini said the commonwealth did not plan to withdraw any charges, which prompted her client to waive her case to county court.
Clark was recommitted to Northumberland County Prison in lieu of $75,000 cash bail set by Jones at her arraignment.
On Oct. 12, Clark was adjudicated delinquent by Saylor on charges of terroristic threats, threats to use weapons of mass destruction, false alarms to public safety agencies and recklessly endangering another person. The charges were filed by Mount Carmel Township Patrolman David Stamets Jr. against Clark for allegedly calling in three bomb threats to Mount Carmel Area School District on Oct. 9.
Adjudicated in the juvenile court system is the equivalent of being found guilty in adult court.
An additional count of threats to use weapons of mass destruction and charges of causing or risking a catastrophe and disorderly conduct were withdrawn.
On Oct. 31, Clark was ordered by Saylor to be released from Lycoming County Shelter Program, attend the Pennsylvania Adolescent Treatment and Healing (PATH) program and perform 50 hours of community service. Clark, who has undergone a psychological evaluation and social services assessment, also was placed on juvenile probation supervision and ordered to attend alternative education classes and comply with other juvenile probation requirements.
Clark, who had been housed in Lycoming County Shelter Care Program in Montoursville since her arrest in Mount Carmel Township, told police she made the threats because she wanted a day off school and didn't believe police would catch her.
The Oct. 9 bomb scare forced the evacuation of approximately 1,800 students, teachers and staff.
Clark, who was taken into custody Oct. 10, allegedly made three phone calls within a four-minute period stating, "There is a bomb in the school. Don't let nobody in the school."
According to police, Clark moved to Mount Carmel with her family about six months ago from Baltimore.