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Hearing waived in case against Reynoldsville woman

September 13, 2011

Jefferson County Sheriff’s Deputy Megan Sonnie escorts Judy L. Sprankle (left) from her preliminary hearing before District Judge Douglas Chambers on two counts of attempted criminal homicide and other charges. The hearing was waived Tuesday. (Photo by Larry McGuire/The Punxsutawney Spirit)

PUNXSUTAWNEY — A preliminary hearing for a Reynoldsville woman charged with two counts of attempted criminal homicide and other charges was waived Tuesday, less than a week after she allegedly fired six shots from a .22 caliber revolver at her husband behind a district judge’s office last Thursday.

Judy L. Sprankle, 60, Summit Road, Reynoldsville, and her attorney, Toni Cherry, waived the preliminary hearing, which was scheduled to be heard Tuesday before District Judge Douglas Chambers, behind whose office the incident occurred last Thursday.

According to police, the shooting occurred around 8:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 8.

Chambers said all three parties — including Sprankle’s husband, Elmer Sprankle, and his girlfriend, Alicia A. Caltagarone — were at his office for a 9 a.m. summary trial, in which Sprankle faced charges of harassment and public drunkenness for threatening to kill Elmer Sprankle and another male stemming from a May 18 incident.

After confronting the two in his vehicle, Sprankle removed a .22 caliber pistol from her purse and fired around six shots, one of which struck Elmer Sprankle’s car, while another struck a private residence along Pleasant Alley, police said.

Responding state troopers saw Sprankle carrying a handgun and walking toward South Penn Street behind Chambers’ office, police said.

When they ordered her to stop and drop the weapon, she complied, laid down on the ground and was taken into custody.

The residence that one of the rounds struck was that of Donna Keslar, who found a hole in the east wall, and troopers later located a spent bullet in the residence.

There were no injuries.

In addition to the attempted homicide charges, Sprankle faces two counts of aggravated assault; one count of discharge of a firearm into an occupied structure; three counts of simple assault; three counts of recklessly endangering another person; and two counts of criminal mischief.

The next steps in Sprankle’s process are two criminal conferences scheduled for Nov. 2 and Dec. 1 with the district attorney’s office and Cherry.

Sprankle remains in the Jefferson County jail on $1 million bond.

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