Crime

Wedding reception guest charged with assaulting Bellefonte police officer

Dalton Eicher
Dalton Eicher

A man is in jail, accused of assaulting a police officer, after police responded to a family feud outside of a wedding reception in Bellefonte over the weekend.

Bellefonte police arrested Dalton Eicher, 22, of Bellefonte, on felony aggravated assault and misdemeanor resisting arrest charges after an officer patrolling near Forge Road saw three men fighting outside Lambert Hall at about 7:20 p.m. Saturday, according to police.

The officer stopped to talk to the men, and one of them told the officer it was a “family matter” and to leave them alone. The men then started to walk back toward Lambert Hall, still shoving one another and yelling profanities, police said.

The officer called for backup and tried again to speak to the trio. Police said they were uncooperative, and one of the men said it was his sons that were fighting. While the officer was trying to talk to Dalton Eicher, police said, his brother headbutted a window on the police cruiser, shattering it.

Other police officers arrived shortly afterward. Eicher started to get physical with them in the parking lot and punched the officer originally on the scene in the face and head, according to court documents. Eicher was taken to the ground and continued to be uncooperative until one of the officers called as backup used a stun gun on him and he was placed in handcuffs, according to police.

The men were attending a wedding reception at Lambert Hall. Alcohol was a factor in the incident, police said.

Police said Eicher hit the officer five to six times. He had some bruising but was otherwise fine and won’t miss any work over the incident, Bellefonte Police Chief Shawn Weaver said.

Eicher was arraigned before District Judge Leslie Dutchcot on Sunday. He also faces summary public drunkenness and disorderly conduct charges. He is held at Centre County Correctional Facility in lieu of $30,000 bail.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.

Charges of criminal mischief, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness are pending against Eicher’s brother, Weaver said.

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