Police: Felton-area grandma pointed shotgun at teen grandson after firing into air

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch

A Felton-area grandmother remains free as she awaits a preliminary hearing on accusations that she pointed a shotgun at her juvenile grandson after firing it into the air.

Lorie Rae Godfrey, 61, who lives on Laurel Hill Road in North Hopewell Township, has not yet had bail set on her misdemeanor charges of child endangerment and simple assault, according to court records. She also is being cited with harassment, records state.

North Hopewell Township Police Officer Justin Ruhl filed the charges  Monday, and Godfrey's preliminary hearing is set for June 17, according to court documents. It's expected she will have bail set while in district court that day.

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Charging documents filed by Ruhl state that Godfrey's teenage grandson was at the home where she and son Travis Knaper live. Knaper is the teen's father, police said.

The exact age of the teen isn't in public court documents, which indicate he is old enough to drive but not yet an adult, meaning he is 16 or 17.

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The teen was at the home of his father and grandmother about 6 p.m. April 14, helping to pull out fence posts, when he and Knaper got into an argument because Knaper thought his son was being disrespectful, police said.

The two ended up tussling on the ground, with Knaper getting on top of his son, documents state.

The teen said he got up and intended to leave in his pickup truck but was waiting for his two brothers to get in the pickup because he didn't think it was safe for them to stay there.

Fled on foot: He said as he was at his truck, he saw Godfrey pointing her shotgun at him, which happened four or five minutes after he heard the shotgun discharge, charging documents allege.

The teen said he fled the property on foot and called 911 as he was running.

He was disheveled and muddy when Ruhl arrived at the scene, police said, and he warned the officer that his grandmother was armed, police said.

"She's got a gun, and she's f—ing insane; they're all insane," the teen said, according to documents. "I don't know what's about to go down, and I wish you luck, and she's ... insane, so I would watch her, alright."

The teen also told the officer that his father didn't hit him as they tussled. Knaper later told the officer that "sometimes a son needs to be put in his place" but is too big to bend over his knee, documents state. Knaper was not charged.

One shotgun shell: The teen's two brothers claimed they didn't see what happened, documents state, but Godfrey admitted she fired the shotgun from the porch.

She denied pointing the weapon at her grandson, according to police.

Godfrey also said there was only one shell in the shotgun when she fired it, documents state.

A current phone number for her couldn't be found Tuesday. It is unclear if she has hired an attorney.

— Reach senior crime reporter Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.

Editor's note: This article has been updated to correct when charging documents indicate the alleged victim heard the gunshot.