County Sheriff’s deputies subdued an apparently suicidal Cambria man who was in the throes of a mental crisis and threatening to harm law enforcement officers.
The call came in about 6:20 p.m. Monday, Oct. 5 of a man seen covered in blood and making threats against police inside his home in the 3200 block of Bradford Cr., Cambria.
The man had a history with the Sheriff’s Office, as according to a news release, he’d threatened to kill his mother, who also lives in the home, just a few days before, as well as making “statements to her about ambushing and killing law enforcement officers,” Sheriff’s spokesman Tony Cipolla said. “When Deputies arrived they were aware this could potentially turn into a suicide-by-cop situation.”
The suspect, identified as Adam Helyar, 36, was reportedly seen throwing items including a wooden chair over an embankment in his backyard, Cipolla said. He was also reportedly wearing a homemade T-shirt that said, “Cop Killer” on the front.
Deputies surrounded the house and realized that Helyar was “going through a mental health crisis,” and they tried to reason with him, which apparently didn’t work.
“At one point,” Cipolla said, “Helyar refused commands to show his hands and began running toward the deputies.
“At that time, deputies deployed less-lethal bean bag rounds at Helyar, striking him. Helyar ran back inside his residence, came back out and returned to where the deputies were located.”
He again refused commands to show his hands, Cipolla said, and began yelling obscenities at the deputies.
They eventually subdued Helyar and one deputy rode with him to the hospital in an ambulance. Cipolla said, “The deputy stated Helyar made threats to kill the deputy and the deputy’s family members.”
According to Cipolla, Helyar, “had access to multiple weapons nearby, which included a pellet gun that resembled a handgun, two machetes and a folding knife that was open.”
Once cleared by the hospital, Helyar was booked into County Jail on suspicion of resisting arrest and “threatening a crime with the intent to terrorize,” Cipolla said. Helyar was undergoing mental health treatment while in custody.