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Police: Pa. man threatened to shoot EMT over face mask

Authorities said the man tried to spit on the EMT and resisted wearing a mask while being transported after allegedly choking his girlfriend and swallowing her medication

By Laura French

NEWBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Police say a Pennsylvania man accused of choking his girlfriend threatened to shoot an EMT who was trying to make him wear a face mask.

Newberry Township Police alleged that Samuel Ryan Soloninka, 41, assaulted his girlfriend and then swallowed 30 of her alprazolam pills when police arrived, according to the York Dispatch. Alprazolam is the generic name of Xanax.

While being transported in an ambulance, Soloninka allegedly attempted to spit on an EMT and resisted attempts to put a face mask on him, authorities said. Police allege Soloninka then told the EMT that he would get a gun and shoot her once he was released.

Officials said Soloninka was handcuffed to the stretcher during transport and eventually lost consciousness before arriving at the hospital. He was treated and discharged, and is now charged with strangulation, aggravated assault, simple assault, aggravated harassment by a prisoner, making terroristic threats, receiving stolen property and illegal possession of a controlled substance.

Police also said Soloninka was a fugitive with three outstanding out-of-county warrants, including one for failure to appear for a hearing on 42 theft-related charges.