The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

February 8, 2013

Standoff ends with 2 shot

Incident started earlier with 2nd woman

By Melissa Klaric
Herald Staff Writer

---- — A Youngstown man is jailed on charges from two local police departments for shooting a woman and opening fire on police in Pymatuning Township during a home invasion Wednesday.

Jessi L. Hudson, 22, also allegedly threatened to shoot another woman in Hermitage earlier in the day.

At 8:19 p.m., Pymatuning Township police were called with a report of burglary in progress at 3812 N. Hermitage Road.

Patrolmen Michael T. Brown of Pymatuning Township police and James Hellman of Greenville-West Salem Township police noticed a car parked along the road in front of the home. When they approached, they heard gunshots inside and, fearing for the resident, forced their way in the front door, police said.

Hudson fired at the patrolmen as they entered and Brown returned fire, police said.

Hudson moved to another part of the home and police were able to help the injured woman out of the house, so she could be taken to a hospital.

Although reports did not specify which hospital, police radio traffic Wednesday indicated she was likely sent to St. Elizabeth Health Center in Youngstown. A St. E’s spokesman said the hospital does not release information on gunshot victims, as a matter of policy.

Police also did not say whether children were in the home, although radio traffic Wednesday indicated a baby and perhaps two other children were there. Media reports said the woman was shot in the back as she was ushering her children into a bathroom.

However, police did not disclose the extent of the woman’s injuries, nor of Hudson’s other than to say they were not fatal.

The Mercer County Critical Incident Response Team was called when Hudson barricaded himself in the home, where police said Amanda Bell was listed as the owner/occupant.

Hudson did not respond to calls or negotiation attempts, said Hermitage Police Chief Patrick B. McElhinny, chairman of the CIRT board. CIRT members “put” pepper rounds in the house and after a four-hour standoff with Hudson, they stormed in and arrested him, McElhinny said.

Hudson was treated at a local hospital and released to police. He was charged by Pymatuning Township police with aggravated assault, burglary and possession of cocaine with intent to deliver for having the drug on him. Pymatuning Township police recovered a .22-caliber pistol, Hermitage police said.

Hudson told Pymatuning Township police he was being chased by “other males” and that his car broke down in front of the Bell home. He admitted that he broke a window to get inside and thought the men chasing him were breaking into the house, so he fired his handgun, police said.

Around the same time Pymatuning Township police were dealing with Hudson, another woman arrived at Hermitage police station and said Hudson had held her at gunpoint and threatened to kill her. Elexis Henry, 19, of Youngstown said she escaped from Hudson’s car near Shenango Valley Mall.

Hermitage police said Henry was a friend of Hudson’s and they had started in Youngstown and ridden around for several hours in a 1999 Lincoln before she showed up at the station at 8 p.m.

Police said that according to Henry, Hudson was agitated about a relationship problem with another woman and that he started taking unspecified drugs and became more agitated and paranoid.

She said Hudson forced her to take a substance suspected of being a harmful drug and that he pulled out a loaded gun and threatened to kill her. She said she wanted to get out of the car, but he wouldn’t let her and ordered her to undress because he insisted she had another cell phone or a gun, police said.

When Hudson stopped at a red light at North Hermitage Road and Indian Run in Hermitage, Henry jumped out and got a ride to the police station from a stranger, police said. Henry was naked from the waist up when she arrived, police said.

As a result of Henry’s story, Hermitage police added charges of unlawful restraint, making terroristic threats, simple assault, carrying a firearm without a license, prohibited possession of a firearm and reckless endangerment to the case against Hudson.

Because Brown fired his weapon, three state police investigators have been called to see whether Brown was justified in shooting Hudson.

Hudson was arraigned Thursday by District Judge Brian Arthur, Greenville, and taken to Mercer County Jail after failing to post $300,000 bond. He faces a preliminary hearing at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday before Arthur.

Hudson has not been arraigned on the Hermitage charges.

Hudson was convicted in 2010 in Ohio of improper handling or discharge of a weapon in a motor vehicle, Hermitage police said.