Hours afterwards his wife served him with annulment papers, badge say a Bethlehem Belt man accursed a gun at her as she cowered abaft a bath door, affecting off a nine-hour collision Tuesday that concluded with badge application an armored abettor to breach bottomward his advanced aperture and booty him into custody.
Christopher Baj’s arrest rocked commonly serene Toursdale Drive, a bedchamber association a the Palmer Belt border.
“It’s a quiet neighborhood,” said 60-year-old John Griffiths III. “Nothing happens here.”
Bethlehem Belt Arch Daniel Pancoast said the adventure began about 2:30 a.m. back Baj “fired an alien weapon” through the bankrupt aperture while Baj’s wife was on the added side.
At one point during the standoff, two adolescent accouchement were central the Baj home in the 2200 block of Toursdale Drive. They were appear several hours later, Pancoast said. The arch said Baj’s wife and addition woman, declared as a cousin, additionally able from the house.
Neighbors said they were alive in the predawn hours by badge radios and floodlights. Two loud bangs that articulate like blow grenades erupted about 10 a.m. About the aforementioned time, a badge administrator application a megaphone gave Baj a “last warning” to accomplish acquaintance with them or they would alpha breaking windows to access the abode to locate him.
Another administrator could be heard shouting at Baj, “We apperceive your wife is abrogation you. She said aftermost night she was abrogation you.”
Around 11:25 a.m., badge acclimated an armored abettor akin a forklift to breach bottomward the door. An administrator shouted with a microphone into the house, allegedly acceptable balked as Baj banned to accede with orders.
“We are not advancing in there appropriate now,” the administrator shouted.
Shortly afterwards that, Baj, 58, was taken into custody. He was arraigned afore District Judge Patricia Broscius and beatific to Northampton County Jail beneath $2 actor bail.
According to the arrest affidavit, Baj accursed three circuit at his wife, Mia Baj, through the aperture of a bath breadth she had fled from him, almost missing her.
The black before, she told badge she had served her bedmate with annulment papers, and he had become affronted and began arguing with her.
The affirmation continues:
The brace went to their abstracted apartment and Mia Baj eventually fell asleep. But ancient afterwards midnight Tuesday, she heard a babble as if addition was advancing up the steps.
Christopher Baj came into his wife’s bedchamber with the annulment affirmation in his duke and a blaster in his waist. She asked him what he was accomplishing and he allegedly took the gun and acicular it at her face.
Mia Baj said she ran into the adept bath and bankrupt the door, with Christopher Baj aperture fire, again physically breaking bottomward the door. She fled and ran alfresco for help, abrogation the couple’s two accouchement central the home with Baj.
According to police, the children, ages 4 and 7, were sleeping in an adjoining allowance back the gunshots were fired. They were not injured.
Bethlehem Belt badge say a man who accursed a gunshot at his wife aboriginal Tuesday was barricaded central his Toursdale Drive home with his children, but the children were cautiously released.
Melissa Krycia/Pocono Almanac File Photo
Christopher Baj (Melissa Krycia/Pocono Almanac File Photo)
Northampton County Cloister annal appearance Mia Baj filed for annulment Friday, citation the acumen as the alliance was “irretrievably broken.”
The filing shows that the brace were affiliated July 16, 2010, in Monroe County and accept two children. According to the filing, the brace are separated.
Christopher Baj’s abode in the filing is listed as Warsaw, Poland. Cloister annal appearance that the ancestors confused to Poland in August, again on Jan. 14, Mia Baj alternate with the accouchement to the Bethlehem Belt home.
Christopher Baj’s LinkedIn annual lists him as a certified accessible accountant specializing in bartering absolute acreage at the Warsaw annex of Sperry Van Ness Imperial Realty. Tom Skeans, the managing administrator of SVN Imperial Realty in Allentown, beneath to altercate Baj.
“At this point, we accept no animadversion on that,” Skeans said.
In a January 2013 aggregation newsletter acquaint online by the Allentown office, breadth Baj formed at the time, he talked about his absorption in cutting guns.
“My wife thinks that sometimes I booty my hobbies a bit too seriously. Since I like marksmanship (especially blaster ambition shooting) I congenital a 14,000 sq.ft. calm pistol cutting ambit to be able to convenance year round,” he wrote in a question-and-answer format.
Griffiths, who lives aslant to the Baj home, said Christopher Baj assassin addition to accumulate his backyard akin while the ancestors was away. He said he knew Baj endemic a gun, but never saw any signs of violence.
Toursdale Drive is in an flush adjacency breadth association booty pride in manicured lawns and bless July Fourth with a benumbed mower parade, Griffiths said. Baj generally aggregate with neighbors afterwards the array to babble over a few beers.
“He seems like a nice guy,” Griffiths said. “I assumption I didn’t apperceive him as able-bodied as I anticipation I did.”
Baj is a above East Stroudsburg Breadth Academy District academy lath member. Cloister annal appearance the ancestors lived in East Stroudsburg afore affective to Bethlehem Belt in June 2013.
Bet Hays, who served on the academy lath with Baj added than a decade ago, alleged Tuesday’s collision shocking.
“Chris was consistently actual intelligent, was consistently a adamantine worker, was not addition who would be arrested for annihilation that I was acquainted of,” Hays said. “It’s actual abashing because I would abhorrence to see annihilation bad appear to him.”
Hays, a absolute acreage abettor in Stroudsburg, said that back she knew Baj he was affiliated to his aboriginal wife, with whom he has two developed daughters. Baj afterwards remarried and started a additional family, Hays said, and she had heard he was accomplishing well.
“It’s aloof awful out of appearance for the Chris Baj I know, or knew,” Hays said. “I’m very, actual afflicted by this and I’m acquisitive that he can go on with his life.”
Baj has no bent record, badge say. Cloister annal appearance he now faces abundant accuse accompanying to the standoff, including attempted murder, aggravated assault, simple assault, endangering the abundance of accouchement and adventuresome endangerment.
Many bodies in the adjacency abstruse about the collision back belt badge beatific out a argument bulletin alert.
“Barricaded accountable — badge abide to accommodate with the subject,” the active stated. “Please abstain this area. Association in the actual adjacency should abide cloistral in place.”
Dozens of emergency cadre descended on Toursdale Drive, and the drive and several ancillary streets were bankrupt to cartage as the collision abject on.
Griffiths, a aegis specialist who works for the Department of Homeland Security, said he was added afraid than abashed during the standoff.
“I consistently acquaint bodies that no abode is safe. And abiding enough, today I had a badge assassin alfresco my window.”
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