DA adds counts to rape case

Prosecutors in Blair County have refiled charges against a Tyrone man accused of sexually assaulting a woman.

Tyrone police originally charged 33-year-old Paul W. Grassmyer of Tyrone with four felony sex charges, including rape by forcible compulsion, but those charges were withdrawn and the case was refiled Wednesday with an additional 11 felony and a dozen misdemeanor counts.

Grassmyer is accused of violently sexually assaulting a woman the night of Feb. 10 after he contacted her on Facebook, invited her over to the home he shares with his mother and grandmother and promised “he wouldn’t try to do anything,” Tyrone police noted in the charges.

Police added additional details about the alleged incident, including that Grassmyer’s mother was not home when the woman arrived at the house on Pleasant Drive about 6 p.m.

At one point, the woman received a call from a family member that upset her and she started to cry. It was then Grassmyer allegedly tried to rub her leg. The woman told police she tried to move away from Grassmyer and told him, “No.”

She told Grassmyer she was leaving because of the phone call, but she told police she wanted to leave because she felt uncomfortable. Grassmyer’s mother then opened the door and asked if she had a ride home and the alleged victim told her she was leaving. After Grassmyer’s mother closed the door, Grassmyer allegedly begged her to stay and blocked the door. He then locked the door as he begged her to stay, and she repeatedly told him, “No,” according to police.

Grassmyer then sexually assaulted the woman. Grassmyer is accused of holding the woman by the throat and hair throughout the alleged attack, and if she refused his commands to perform certain sex acts, he allegedly would slap the woman in the face.

The woman was able to flee when Grassmyer’s mother pounded on the bedroom door and yelled at him, police said.

Police indicated a subsequent medical examination at UPMC Altoona showed multiple signs of a sexual and physical assault, including marks on the woman’s neck.

Grassmyer’s attorney, Robert Donaldson, said Friday he learned of the new charges Wednesday when he contacted Tyrone District Court to have Grassmyer’s preliminary hearing continued due to a scheduling conflict. Donaldson said he had received the new criminal complaint and would be meeting with his client over the weekend to go over the case.

Grassmyer is charged with strangulation, sexual assault, simple assault, false imprisonment, rape by forcible compulsion and rape by threat of force as well as multiple counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, aggravated indecent assault and indecent assault. In all, Grassmyer faces 15 felony charges and 14 misdemeanor charges.

Grassmyer remains in Blair County Prison where he has been since his arrest Feb. 11 after failing to post his $50,000 cash bail. On Wednesday he was arraigned on the new charges by Magisterial District Judge Fred Miller. Miller set Grassmyer’s new bail at $75,000 cash.

A preliminary hearing is slated for March 6 in Tyrone.

Mirror Staff Writer Greg Bock is at 946-7458.