Man charged with assault for incident at store

Oil City police have filed assault charges against a man who reportedly brandished a firearm at the North Side Country Fair last week.

A criminal complaint filed through district judge Andrew Fish’s office says officers with the Oil City police department were sent to the Country Fair just after 11 p.m. on July 27 for reports of a man threatening to harm himself near the trash bins.

The man, identified as 43-year-old Darren Kerr, was found pacing and holding his right hand behind his back, the complaint said.

Officers told Kerr to put the gun down multiple times over several minutes and Kerr later placed both his hands straight up above his head, the complaint said.

Kerr then followed the officers’ orders to turn around, walk back and kneel on the ground, before he was placed in handcuffs, the complaint said.

Police recovered a fully loaded 9mm pistol with the hammer cocked in a holster in the middle of Kerr’s back, according to the complaint.

The complaint indicates family members told police Kerr had sent text messages to them saying his life was over and he wanted police to arrive so they would shoot him because he couldn’t pull the trigger on himself.

Charges filed against Kerr include one count each of aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person, simple assault and disorderly conduct.

Kerr was arraigned Thursday by Fish and placed in the Venango County jail on $250,000 bail.

A preliminary hearing has been tentatively scheduled for Wednesday in Central Court.