Donald Gentner III, 22, of 2377 Lone Walnut Club Road, Jersey Shore, pleaded guilty Monday to unlawful restraint and simple assault as a result of his involvement in the Oct. 17, 2011, kidnapping of Daniel Harrold. He was sentenced to 30 days in county prison and two years and 11 months of probation supervision, according to court documents.
Gentner was one of 11 people charged in connection with the crime. All of the defendants have pleaded guilty and have been sentenced except Anthony Weaver, who pleaded guilty to unlawful restraint and simple assault and awaits sentencing on Dec. 17.
On the morning of the kidnapping, Harrold and his girlfriend, Naomi Miles, allegedly had a domestic dispute. Later that afternoon, Miles' mother, Lisa Beehler, came to Harrold's home to remove her daughter's property. She asked Harrold to accompany her to Best Self Storage on South Reach Road. As the pair left the storage unit, three vehicles blocked the road and about 10 males, including Miles' brother, Matt Beehler, surrounded Lisa Beehler's truck, according to District Attorney Eric R. Linhardt.
Matt Beehler ordered Harrold out of the truck. When he refused, Lisa Beehler grabbed a sledge hammer and began hitting Harrold, yelling, "I'm gonna break your arms and legs," according to Linhardt. Matt Beehler tied Harrold's hands behind his back with nylon flex ties and placed him into the trunk of a white sedan.
The assailants drove around with Harrold in the trunk for a long time, ultimately ending up in Pine Township, Lycoming County. Harrold was able to free his hands from the flex cuff and activate the trunk's emergency release. He ran into the dark and took refuge in an unoccupied home where he called 911.
"Harrold told police that he was in fear for his life and was sure he was going to be killed," Linhardt said.
Matt Beehler pleaded guilty to kidnapping, conspiracy and assault on Dec. 19, 2011, and was sentenced to five to ten years in state prison.
Lisa Beehler pleaded guilty to kidnapping and aggravated assault on Dec. 5, 2011, and was sentenced to four to eight years in state prison.
"The harshest penalties were appropriately reserved for those most culpable - Matt Beehler and his mother Lisa Beehler - who are now deservedly serving long sentences in state prison," Linhardt said.
Also sentenced for their involvement in the Harrold kidnapping were:
Steven Renk, eight days in county jail and two years of probation for simple assault.
Michael Hill, six months of probation for harassment and disorderly conduct.
Krystopher Fuller, six months of probation for disorderly conduct.
Kyle Myers, two years of probation for false imprisonment.
Roy Venemon, two years of probation for unlawful restraint.
Andrew Morgan, two years of probation for unlawful restraint.
Jacob Winchester, six months to two years less one day in county prison and one year probation for unlawful restraint and simple assault.
"I cannot and will not tolerate vigilante justice in our community," Linhardt said.
Each defendant has been punished according to their individual level of culpability, previous criminal history and cooperation with law enforcement. All of those involved in the crime have been convicted, according to Linhardt.