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Middletown police assist in arrest of Lititz man who authorities say threatened building with propane

Press & Journal Staff

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Posted 5/2/19

The Middletown Borough Police Department assisted in the arrest of a Lititz man who authorities say threatened extensive damage to an Elizabethtown apartment building using propane.

At about 10:30 …

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Middletown police assist in arrest of Lititz man who authorities say threatened building with propane

Posted

The Middletown Borough Police Department assisted in the arrest of a Lititz man who authorities say threatened extensive damage to an Elizabethtown apartment building using propane.

At about 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, the Elizabethtown Police Department received a call for a subject threatening harm against himself and others at 451 W. High St., the Savoy Shoe Factory Apartments.

According to Elizabethtown police, Justin Lee Getz, 30, claimed to have an assault-style rifle, makeshift flammable explosives, bladed weapons, and the ability to cause extensive damage to the apartment building using propane.

Officers attempted to convince the subject to come outside, but he instead made comments that led to further concern of danger for nearby residents and responding officers, according to a press release from Elizabethtown police. Officers evacuated as much of the building as possible, requesting other residents to secure themselves in the lowest area available in their own home if removing them placed them in more danger than remaining inside.

At about 4:30 a.m. Wednesday, after taking precautionary measures to reduce the danger to remaining residents of the building, the Lancaster County SERT Team employed tactical measures to take Getz into custody. Also assisting were the Northwest Regional Police Department, Susquehanna Regional Police Department, Mount Joy Borough Police Department, Middletown Borough Police Department, and the Pennsylvania State Police.

Prior to police response, there had been a disturbance involving Getz and a woman as well as a young child. The woman and young child were able to leave the residence prior to police arriving.

Charges were filed Wednesday by Detective Dustin Ryan of Elizabethtown police and approved by Assistant District Attorney Amy Muller. These charges include one count of strangulation, a second-degree felony; one count of threats to use a weapon of mass destruction, a third-degree felony; terroristic threats causing evacuation, a third-degree felony; endangering the welfare of children, a third-degree felony; causing or risking catastrophe, a third-degree felony; terroristic threats, a first-degree misdemeanor; and false imprisonment, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Getz is being held in the Lancaster County Prison in lieu of $500,000 bail, according to Elizabethtown police.