PSP: York City officers shoot fleeing suspect

John Joyce
  • PSP: Two York City officers fired at a fleeing suspect who tried to run them over
  • PSP troopers are investigating Saturday's officer-involved shooting
  • The officers who fired on a fleeing suspect are on administrative leave while PSP investigates

New information released Monday about the shooting of a fleeing suspect by York City police officers outside a beer store Saturday night suggests the parking lot where the shots were fired was not only filled with police officers but with patrons as well.

Charging documents allege James Armentrout, 43, of 37 E. Fifth Ave. in North York, was driving a white SUV when he pulled into the parking lot of 3rd Base Food and Beer about 8:30 p.m. York City police officers were staged in the car wash bays to the rear of the store waiting to serve a warrant for Armentrout.

As he prepared to leave the lot, officers — some on foot, others in police cruisers — moved to block his exit.

As officers closed in, the SUV maneuvered around the cruisers and Armentrout "intentionally drove toward officers on foot" and "placed the officers in fear of serious bodily injury or death," documents said.


Two officers fired at Armentrout, striking him once in the leg, according to police.

As this all unfolded, numerous patrons were present in the parking lot, both on foot and in their cars, according to the charging documents.

A news release issued Sunday afternoon by York City Police said one officer was hit by Armentrout's vehicle, but a state police report released Sunday said officers managed to avoid contact. The two officers who fired their weapons are on administrative leave pending the state police investigation, which is customary practice, according to the release.

Despite being wounded, Armentrout escaped in the SUV and led officers on a brief chase, police said. Officers eventually lost sight of him, but he turned up a short time later at Hanover Hospital seeking treatment for his injuries. He was arrested at the hospital, where he was treated and released for injuries, according to the report.

Warrant: The warrant police were trying to serve Armentrout stemmed from a June 12 domestic dispute, according to court records.

According to charging documents, Northern York County Regional police were called to 37 E. Fifth Ave., where Armentrout was involved in a physical altercation with Savannah Foller.

Foller's mother, Stacy Aldinger, called police because Armentrout grabbed Foller by the neck with both hands and pinned her to the ground during an argument, documents allege.

Armentrout and Foller were arguing about Foller apparently having been in contact with an ex-boyfriend, police said. During the argument Armentrout threatened to kill their son, and after being pulled off Foller by her parents, he went upstairs and took the son and left the home, according to police.

Armentrout fled in a white GMC Yukon with the boy seated on his lap. Aldinger told police she asked Armentrout before he left if he would have really harmed the child. He told her he would not have, and that he had just said those things to get Foller worked up, police said.

York County deputy kills man who shot him in face

Arraigned: Armentrout was arraigned Sunday on the initial arrest warrant, which included charges of endangering the welfare of a child, simple assault, harassment, driving with a suspended license, failure to use a seat belt for the driver and occupant of a vehicle and improper child restraint. He is in York County Prison on $25,000 bail.

Police: York City homicide victim was arguing with acquaintance

Saturday's incident is the latest in a recent string of violence in York City, including the shooting death of a 27-year-old Manchester Township man Thursday near the corner of East Maple Street and South Court Avenue. A week earlier, a man was shot in the face during an altercation at a York City bar in the early-morning hours of June 9.

Later that morning, a York County sheriff's deputy exchanged gunfire with a suspect while serving a warrant. The deputy was shot in the face and thumb, and the suspect later died of his injuries.

That night, five men were injured in three separate shooting incidents throughout the city. Police have yet to disclose whether any of the three shootings were connected.

— Reach John Joyce atjjoyce2@yorkdispatch.comor on Twitter at @JohnJoyceYD.