A visitor at Benner state prison was taken into custody Saturday after allegedly being disruptive.
According to the criminal complaint filed by state police at Rockview, troopers were contacted by prison staff at about 1:45 p.m. in reference to a female visitor. A trooper arrived on the scene and was informed that the woman, later identified as Aleia C. Smith, 28, of Pittsburgh, was denied visitation due to a violation of prison clothing policy and was told to leave.
Smith became irate, police said, and screamed and hit numerous lockers while inside the prison. After walking outside, she reportedly kicked a door, causing damage.
Smith then went to a field at the end of the parking lot and sat down holding a small child, police said. The trooper again spoke with the woman, reportedly telling her she was in an unauthorized field area on prison grounds and offered to seat her in his air-conditioned vehicle — the day was described as “extremely hot and humid, about 85 degrees.”
Never miss a local story.
Smith told the trooper to get away from her, police said, and refused to identify herself. After refusing the vehicle a second time, she attempted to leave but was told she was under arrest for disorderly conduct and trespassing and ordered to stop.
Smith refused to stop, police said, and pulled away from the trooper and allegedly threatened to kick him. When the trooper tried to place her on the ground, a corrections officer attempted to take the child but the woman reportedly squeezed the child and refused to let go.
A second corrections officer assisted in getting the child and putting Smith on the ground, police said. She reportedly continued to struggle as she was handcuffed.
She refused EMS treatment on the scene and was taken to the Rockview station, police said. At the station, she reportedly continued to be disruptive by screaming and yelling.
Smith was arraigned Saturday before District Judge Steven Lachman, according to court documents, and charged with misdemeanor counts of child endangerment, criminal mischief, institutional vandalism, resisting arrest, defiant trespassing and disorderly conduct. Bail was denied, citing that Smith is “a danger to herself and possibly others,” and she was taken to the Centre County Correctional Facility.
A preliminary hearing is slated for Wednesday.