A Florida man faces charges after police say he pulled a gun on a man at an Allegheny Township gas station.
"I believe it was a matter of road rage," said Allegheny Township Assistant Police Chief Leo Berg of the alleged incident Tuesday at the Kwik Fill at 663 Old Route 22 just outside Duncansville in which Benjamin Harold Frye, 65, of Vero Beach, Fla., is accused of pulling a gun and threatening to shoot a man.
The man had tapped on the darkly tinted window of Frye's Cadillac Escalade after Frye leaned forward in the driver's seat and blew the horn for an extended period of time, thinking Frye was having some sort of medical emergency, police said. Berg said the station was crowded, and police believe Frye was angry because he couldn't exit the station.
Mirror photo by Greg Bock
Allegheny Township Assistant Police Chief Leo Berg escorts Benjamin H. Frye, 65, of Vero Beach, Fla., into Magisterial District Judge Steven Jackson’s office Tuesday afternoon. Police allege that Frye pulled a gun on a man at a gas station in a road rage incident.
"There was no medical emergency," Berg said. "He was just upset because he couldn't get out of the parking lot."
According to the charges filed against Frye, several witnesses told police that Frye opened the driver's side door, stepped out of the SUV and yelled "get out of my face." Frye, who was described as shaking like "a leaf" as he yelled, turned around, pulled a .380 caliber handgun from the SUV and said, "I'll show you."
Police said Frye then pointed the gun at the man, who put his hands up and backed away. Police said Frye, who has a permit for the gun, told the man he was going to shoot him.
"That's a lie. It's a lie. It's a lie," a handcuffed Frye said as he awaited his arraignment on terroristic threats and related charges Tuesday before Magisterial District Judge Steven Jackson. "I did not point a gun at anybody."
Frye left the gas station after the alleged incident but was taken into custody after a traffic stop by Duncansville police, who were assisted by state police and a state Game Commission officer.
Frye also had a marijuana pipe and a small bag of pot in his SUV.
"I use it for my PTSD," Frye, a Marine Corps veteran of Vietnam, said. "I know it's illegal but it's the only thing that helps."
Frye is originally from the Altoona area, police said, and has no criminal history apart from a driving under the influence arrest in 1991.
Frye indicated the threats came from the other man, prompting Jackson to tell him not to discuss the details of his case.
Frye was released on a unsecured $20,000 bond and is slated to appear before Judge Jackson on Aug. 21 for a preliminary hearing on the charges.