Man Faces Charges for Threatening Borough Workers

JESSUP, Pa. -- Workers in municipal offices all over our area have been on edge since a code enforcement official working for Paradise Township in Monroe County was shot and killed by a resident.

Police say a man in Lackawanna County threatened to do the same thing to code enforcement officials in Jessup and that man is now facing felony charges.

A man who owns a home in Jessup called code enforcement officials Wednesday afternoon to complain that he was denied a permit. Police say he became angry and made a threat that, for the workers, hit very close to home.

Workers at the Jessup borough building admit they've been on edge since a township worker in Monroe County was shot and killed, allegedly by an angry resident.

That's why a call to Jessup's code enforcement office Wednesday afternoon caused workers to call police.

Officers say Michael Lesnefsky, 83, called to complain that he was denied a permit to work on a house he owns in Jessup, then told workers to remember what happened in Paradise Township, that he was in the same situation, and that he carries a gun.

"At that time the secretary there got nervous. They, in return, called our secretary Sharon," said Jessup Police Sgt. Robert Berta.

Sgt. Berta was in the building when Lesnefsky's call came in. He says they first called in extra officers to watch the building. Then, they called the district attorney's office where prosecutors filed felony charges against Lefnefsky for making terroristic threats.

"Everybody's kind of nervous, and it was a really big inconvenience, and it caused us to put a couple more officers on and to sit in the building at that time," Sgt. Bert said.

Lesnefsky had a zoning hearing in front of magistrate scheduled for Thursday regarding the permit he wanted that did not go on as scheduled. He's now scheduled to go in front of a magistrate next week to face those felony charges.

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