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Connellsville man threatens mass shooting at Uniontown Hospital

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A Connellsville man allegedly threatened a mass shooting at Uniontown Hospital while he was a patient there last month, according to police.

Brian E. Swank, 46, told a nurse that he would “start killing at the bottom floor” and target security guards first with weapons he already has, investigators said.

Swank was jailed Wednesday on charges of risking catastrophe, bomb threats, terroristic threats, harassment and disorderly conduct. His bail was set at $20,000.

In court papers, hospital and Uniontown police said Swank was admitted as a patient on Aug. 29. Several hospital staff members told investigators that Swank said “if anything happens to his dogs” while he was at the hospital with no one to care for the animals, he would bring firearms and a bomb there and kill 60 to 80 people, police reported.

A registered nurse offered to arrange for care for Swank’s dogs when he was still a patient on Aug. 31, police said.

“Swank reportedly responded that he hopes the dogs die so he can come back to the hospital and shoot all of the people that murdered his dogs,” city and hospital police wrote in a complaint. “Swank advised … that he has all the weapons he needs to follow through with his threat.”

It was unclear whether Swank had been released from the hospital.

Renatta Signorini is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Renatta at 724-837-5374, [email protected] or via Twitter @byrenatta.

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