CLEARFIELD – A county jail inmate accused of threatening corrections officers at the jail and trying to escape, is being sent for a mental health evaluation.
In July, John F. Moore, 43, of Clearfield allegedly removed a piece of a metal desk, which he used as a weapon to threaten corrections officers and to injure himself.
According to the affidavit, Moore held the shank at the neck of one of the COs, demanding to be let out of the building. Later he was locked in the garage where he threatened to kill himself.
The situation was noted as a “psychological emergency” initially and eventually Moore was taken into custody before being transported to a hospital for treatment of his injuries.
On Friday he was in court to plead guilty to aggravated assault, aggravated harassment and criminal attempt/escape, all felonies, in exchange for a six-month jail sentence.
His attorney Joshua Maines told President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman that Moore did not intend to hurt anyone, and if had wanted to, he actually had the opportunity to do that.
It made little sense for Moore to try to escape because he was only incarcerated on a bench warrant for not paying his fines and costs on another case, he explained.
He said Moore was “coming down” from narcotics and being medicated for that when this happened. Since that time, he said he has been taken off those medications and has been stable.
Maines continued to say Moore had a limited criminal record with no history of violence.
Assistant District Attorney Trudy Lumadue also mentioned there was a question as to whether the incident was the result of Moore’s medication.
Ammerman stated the probation office was recommending he reject the six-month plea.
Moore’s actions put the correction officers at risk, which could put this case into a higher sentencing range requiring a 14-month minimum sentence, he said. In addition, he said the CO involved in the incident was not in favor of the six-month sentence.
Instead of rejecting the plea agreement, Ammerman decided to send Moore to state prison for a 60-day psychiatric evaluation.
Moore will be scheduled to be sentenced following the results of the evaluation.
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