On May 30, 2022 at approximately 1:41 PM Sugarcreek Borough Police received a dispatch for a known male who was alleged to have set fire to a bed mattress in a house and assaulted the caller at 88 Meadville Pike.
Upon arrival officers were able to gain entry into the house and clear it. No fire was noted. Police then spoke with the caller at the police station. While speaking with the known victim and known juvenile victim, officers learned that William Winters Jr., 39 of Franklin, had been at their house earlier in the day. While he was there he became verbally and eventually physically assaultive telling the known juvenile victim “just let me kill her” when the juvenile victim stepped in to stop him from attacking the known adult victim. William Winters Jr. then took his shirt off and attempted to punch/assault the known juvenile.
Winters Jr. chased both victims down the road when they left the house so they returned. Winters Jr. came back to the house and began shoving the known adult victim as she attempted to leave again. Both victims left the residence while William Winters Jr. stayed behind. As they were walking down the road Winters Jr. came up to them and told them that he had lit the bed on fire and left the house open. He then threw a plastic bottle at them and left.
The known victims were alarmed and called 911 to report the fire which resulted in Sugarcreek Borough Police, and Rocky Grove Volunteer Fire Department to respond with multiple vehicles and personnel. Once it was known there was no fire all units cleared.
William Winters Jr. was located by Oil City Police Department and detained until Sugarcreek Borough Police could arrive and place him in custody.
William Winters Jr. was charged with the following:
Terroristic Threats – 2 counts – Misd 1
Stalking – 1 count – Misd 1
Simple Assault – 2 counts – Misd 2
Harassment – 1 count – Misd 3
Harassment – 1 count – Summary
William Winters Jr was arraigned before Magistrate Lowrey. Due to the severity of William Winters Jr.’s behavior, and the fact that he was already on probation, Judge Lowrey denied bail and William Winters Jr. was placed into the Venango County Jail pending his preliminary hearing on June 8, 2022.