Suspect jumps from roof in failed attempt to elude Shamokin police
SHAMOKIN — A Shamokin man wanted for breaking into a vacant house in the 300 block of South Seventh Street earlier this month was taken into custody Tuesday night after jumping from a roof at his residence onto a neighboring property when police and probation officers attempted to serve him with a warrant.
James H. Latshaw, 48, of 126 E. Arch St., faces new offenses of flight to avoid apprehension and resisting arrest after previously being charged with theft, criminal trespass, loitering and prowling at night, criminal mischief, disorderly conduct and flight to avoid apprehension.
The fugitive was detained overnight in Northumberland County Prison before being arraigned at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday by Magisterial District Judge John Gembic III. He was committed to prison in lieu of $40,000 cash bail on all charges.
According to a criminal complaint filed by Cpl. Bryan Primerano, police responded to Latshaw’s residence shortly after 8 p.m. after obtaining a warrant from Gembic. Shamokin Patrolmen Nathan Rhodes and Scott Weaver along with Coal Township Patrolman Edward Purcell knocked on the front door and spoke to an unidentified occupant, who then walked upstairs.
Coal Township Patrolman Matthew Henrich, who was stationed at the rear of the residence, spotted Latshaw exit the home onto a roof. Police told Latshaw he was wanted and instructed him to come down from the roof, but the defendant refused to do so despite the home being surrounded by police and county probation officers, authorities said.
After an extended period of time, officers saw Latshaw jump from the roof to a second-story residence on the east side of his home before leaping to the ground and running east through neighboring yards.
After being met near Marshall Street by Coal Township Patrolman Terry Ketchem, Latshaw changed his route to access Marshall Street before running north, again, police said, despite their shouts for him to stop and that was he was under arrest.
Probation officer Daniel Shoop managed to catch up with Latshaw on Marshall Street and restrained him when he ran into a fence. Latshaw was forced to the ground in an attempt by authorities to handcuff him, but police said he resisted before being subdued and transported to Shamokin Police Station.
Shortly before midnight Aug. 10, police were notified that a burglary was in progress at a vacant property at 303 S. Seventh St.
The caller told police a male was inside the building while a female was waiting for him in a sport utility vehicle.
Upon responding to the scene, Primerano spotted a sport utility vehicle occupied by Latshaw’s girlfriend, Jennifer Geiser. The corporal then conducted a vehicle stop a few blocks away on Geiser, who said told the officer she was waiting to pick up Latshaw at 303 S. Seventh St. After observing neighbors watching her, Geiser said she had left the area before returning.
Shamokin Cpl. Jarrod Scandle, who responded to the burglary with Purcell and Henrich, saw Latsha run from the property into a yard. Purcell then went to Latshaw’s home, where he spotted the defendant outside his front door. Latshaw fled through his home into the back yard before running through neighboring yards despite being warned to stop by police, who formed a perimeter around the 100 block of East Arch Street.
After an extended period of time, Latshaw ran from a yard east on Arch Street, south on Marshall Street and then onto Gold Street, where he descended the “Patsy Steps” leading to South Rock Street and managed to elude police.
Police said Latshaw caused damage to private property and landscaping by running and trespassing into yards in the 100 block of East Arch Street.