Cecil standoff ends peacefully

  • By Scott Beveridge November 22, 2012
Cecil Township police Capt. Shawn Bukovinsky speaks to reporters Thursday night following a standoff that ended peacefully. - Scott Beveridge / Observer-Reporter Order a Print

CECIL – A Cecil Township man surrendered peacefully following a more than three-hour Thanksgiving Day standoff with police at his residence, where he had fired several shots at family members while armed with an assault rifle.

Cecil police Capt. Shawn Bukovinsky said no one was injured, and that officers had taken the suspect, Joseph Kovan, 41, into custody outside his 13 Charles St. residence.

“Everybody is safe,” Bukovinsky said after the standoff ended about 8:30 p.m. “He did shoot at his father and sister. He gave himself up.” The Washington County Regional SWAT Team was summoned to the residence after Kovan’s parents managed to flee the house and call 911 at 5:10 p.m., Bukovinsky said. Police later managed to convince Kovan to allow his sister to leave the residence, he said.

He said police were preparing late Thursday to file charges against Kovan, who had been under the influence of alcohol when he began arguing with his relatives.

Police from multiple departments also were summoned to the standoff.

A resident of Charles Street, when reached by phone during the standoff, said police told her a man had barricaded himself inside a house there with a rifle. The woman, who did not want to be identified, said police told her to stay inside her house.

During the incident, police from neighboring departments had blocked Cecil-Henderson Road between Route 50 and Hickory Grade Road.

Scott Beveridge has been with the Observer-Reporter since 1986 after previously working at the Daily Herald in Monongahela. He is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s fine arts and art education programs and Duquesne University’s master of liberal arts program. He is a 2004 World Affairs journalism fellow.


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