Man accused of threatening to kill people outside Great Barrington restaurant

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GREAT BARRINGTON — A South Egremont man is facing numerous charges he allegedly chased, assaulted and threatened to kill people with a knife outside a restaurant Friday night when they tried to keep him from driving drunk.

Donald Schneider Jr., 50, is being held pending a dangerousness hearing Thursday.

His bail was revoked on a previous charges of breaking and entering and assault an battery on family member, according to the Southern Berkshire District Court clerk's office. He pleaded guilty to those charges in Central Berkshire District Court on Tuesday and was sentenced to two years in jail.

Schneider was arrested in the parking lot of Bogie’s Restaurant & Pub after brandishing a folding knife, assaulting two people, and threatening to slit the owner’s throat, according to a statement released Monday by Great Barrington police.

Just after 9:30 p.m., police received a call from the restaurant owner to report that a man was “chasing people with a knife.” Restaurant staff had apparently confronted Schneider in the parking lot after refusing to serve him at the restaurant off Route 7 since he had arrived intoxicated, police say.

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Schneider had grown disorderly and “flipped a bowl of nuts into the air” on his way out the door, prompting staff to follow him to stop him from driving, the statement said. That’s when police say he threatened to kill the owner, and also assaulted two people with the knife and threatened to murder them as well. No one was injured.

According to the statement, Schneider also vandalized a holding cell at the police station with “saliva and bath tissue," banged on the walls and door, screamed, sang, howled and made “unrealistic threats to officers.”

He pleaded not guilty Monday to two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon, two counts of threat to commit a crime — murder, disorderly conduct and vandalizing jail property.

Judge Mark Pasquariello revoked his bail on the previous case and set a dangerousness hearing for Thursday in Southern Berkshire District Court.

Heather Bellow can be reached at hbellow@berkshireeagle.com or on Twitter @BE_hbellow and 413-329-6871.

This story has been modified to include information about Schneider's sentencing on prior charges.


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