Sunbury grandmother granted 3-year PFA
SUNBURY - The Sunbury woman allegedly assaulted by her grandson prior to him being shot by police July 8 has been granted a three-year protection from abuse order.
Amanda Trometter, 67, testified at a PFA hearing Wednesday morning that Erick R. Trometter hit her that day and on other occasions, threatened to kill her and often went to bed with a large hunting knife at his side. That testimony convinced hearing officer Marsha Skoff to grant the order.
Erick Trometter, 22, was not present at the hearing. He remains hospitalized in fair condition at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, where he's recovering from a gunshot wound to his leg fired by Brad Hare, then-acting police chief of Sunbury.
State police said Trometter confronted Hare with a knife just outside Sunbury following the alleged assault.
Hare, who earlier this week was named chief, was justified in using deadly force, District Attorney Ann Targonski ruled July 25.
The PFA hearing originally convened July 16, but it lasted just five minutes when Skoff learned that Erick Trometter was in a coma July 10 when he was served the PFA. A temporary PFA remained in effect.
Sgt. Dwayne Pidcoe of the county's sheriff office testified Wednesday that the Montour County Sheriff's Office served the order again July 23 while Erick Trometter was awake and coherent.
Trometter has 20 days to appeal Skoff's decision.
Following Amanda Trometter's testimony, Skoff said there was sufficient evidence to grant the PFA.
She said the following three conditions for a PFA were met: attempting to cause or causing serious bodily injury; placing a person in reasonable fear of imminent serious bodily injury, and knowingly engaging in a course of conduct or repeatedly committing acts toward another person, including following the person, without proper authority, under circumstances that place the person in reasonable fear of bodily harm.
Skoff said two other PFA conditions involving false imprisonment and physical or sexual abuse of children didn't apply in the case.
"There's clearly sufficient evidence to grant the PFA order," Skoff said.
The hearing officer said Erick Trometter must may $160.42 in sheriff costs for serving the PFA order, $116 to the prothonotary's office, a $100 mandatory hearing fee and a $20 PFA document fee.
'Belong in a grave'
Amanda Trometter, who was accompanied by two female counselors but did not have an attorney, said she and her grandson had lived together at 618 Susquehanna Ave. for about a year prior to the alleged assault.
She claimed Erick Trometter came into her bedroom at approximately 8:30 a.m., punched her in the right leg several times and later kicked her in the face with his bare feet, causing her to suffer a bloody nose.
She also claimed her grandson struck her breast while kicking her.
The victim said her right leg is very weak from "drop foot."
After the assault, Trometter said she told her grandson she was leaving. When he accused her of going to the "cops," Trometter said she was not going to the police station and that her destination was none of his business.
The victim said she then went to the county AREA Agency on Aging to report the assault. She said an agency employee notified police.
When asked by Skoff if there were other physical incidents with her grandson, Trometter said, "Yes." She said the defendant would come into her bedroom two or three times daily and repeatedly punch her legs.
Trometter said she's afraid of her grandson and fears for her life since he has threatened to kill her in the past.
"He told me I belong in a grave," she said. "I believe he would carry out those threats because he slept with a large hunting knife."
Trometter said when she took the hunting knife away from her grandson, he would get butcher knives from the kitchen.
She also testified that Trometter previously stabbed her with a spoon, causing her to suffer an injury to her right shoulder area. She said Trometter spent three years in prison for the stabbing incident.
Trometter said her grandson punched holes in their house in the past and was involved in several altercations with her husband, who died more than three years ago.
Charges still pending
Erick Trometter was charged by Sunbury police July 9 with a felony aggravated assault, a misdemeanor of simple assault and a summary offense of harassment for the incident involving his grandmother. Charges related to the confrontation with Hare are pending.
Police said Erick Trometter had a large fillet knife when Hare saw him walking along Mile Post Road near Shikellamy Avenue. There was a warrant for his arrest related to the alleged assault of his grandmother, and Hare attempted to take him into custody.
Listed at 6 feet, 290 pounds, police said Erick Trometter resisted and continued to struggle with Hare after being shot with a Taser three times. Hare then fired his gun.
Erick Trometter was initially hospitalized in critical condition.