SANATOGA PA – A 26-year-old Pottstown man was charged early Sunday morning (Feb. 24, 2013) by Lower Pottsgrove police with aggravated assault and several other offenses, after investigators said he struck and threatened to shoot a man and woman at a home in the 1900 block of East High Street, and also threatened a 3-year-old child there.
Police reported they recovered a fully loaded gun at the scene, along with a holster and a loaded spare magazine.
Jose Luis Valera also has been charged with simple assault, possessing an instrument of crime, recklessly endangering another person, and harassment.
Police arrived at the property at 2:46 a.m., after receiving a report of a man armed with a handgun who had allegedly assaulted two subjects. They found Valera walking in a driveway and reaching for something in his waistband, according to Lower Pottsgrove Sgt. Timothy Walters. Valera was holding a pistol, later identified as a .40-caliber Glock, Walters said.
In tense moments that followed police drew their own weapons and, at gunpoint, ordered Valera to the ground. He obeyed and was taken into custody, and police removed the pistol from the driveway, Walters reported.
Following their investigation, police said Valera had entered the residence and found a woman, reportedly his former girlfriend, and another male there, along with the woman’s young daughter. They allege Valera “threatened all three subjects with the loaded pistol then struck the man in the head several times with the pistol before the male was able to flee the residence.”
Valera reportedly ran after the other man, but could not find him. He then came back into the home, police said, again pointed the pistol at the woman and child and threatened to shoot them, and then physically assaulted the woman.
Both victims were treated at the scene by Goodwill Ambulance; the woman was later taken for treatment to Pottstown Memorial Medical Center, the man to Reading Hospital for a head laceration. The 3-year-old was not injured. Assisting at the scene, Walters noted, were police officers from Pottstown, Limerick, North Coventry, West Pottsgrove and Upper Providence.
A preliminary hearing for Valera will be held in the Sanatoga courtroom of Magisterial Justice Edward Kropp Sr. at a later date.
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