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Area woman charged with attempted homicide

By Staff | Aug 15, 2012

UNITYVILLE – A 43-year-old woman was jailed on attempted homicide and related offenses for allegedly firing a 20-gauge shotgun at her husband as he drove away from her in his pickup truck on a neighbor’s property, according to state police.

After ramming her Ford Ranger into the back of her husband’s truck, Barbara Lynn Gruver got out of the vehicle, aimed a shotgun at the truck and fired a single shot, blowing out the rear window of a vehicle driven by Todd Gruver.

In his rearview mirror, Gruver could see his wife take aim at his vehicle, Trooper Michael Shipman said in an affidavit.

“He ducked down in his seat as low as he could and still drive. He then heard the glass to the rear window break,” Shipman said.

The drama unfolded Sunday night in a neighbor’s driveway after Todd Gruver had fled his house at 397 Gardner Road in Jordan Township following a lengthy heated disturbance with his wife, Shipman said.

The trouble started about 7:30 p.m. when Barbara Gruver returned home from doing errands and told her husband that “she hated him and wanted him to leave,” Shipman said.

“She started slapping him, punching him and kicking him. She then threatened to shoot and kill him,” Shipman said. She then went to the dining room and attempted to get a 20-gauge pump shotgun from a wall rack, but her husband managed to “wrestle the gun away from her,” Shipman said.

The woman then went to the back porch and got a semi-automatic rifle and “raised it toward her husband,” but again he managed to disarm her, Shipman said. The husband fled the house after his wife

allegedly “attempted to strike him with a frying pan. He decided to leave in attempt to defuse the situation,” the investigator added.

Todd Gruver drove to a neighbor’s home, but after finding no one there, he called police from the driveway, Shipman said. He was waiting for police to arrive when he saw his wife coming at him in her truck.

After his rear window was shattered by the gunshot blast, Todd Gruver sped out onto Gardner Road and drove a distance until his wife’s vehicle “was out of sight,” Shipman said.

The woman drove back to her property, where she crashed her truck into a utility pole and a trailer, Shipman said. A neighbor, hearing her cries for help, found Barbara Gruver on the ground “with blood all over her face,” Shipman said.

The woman was flown to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, where she was admitted overnight for treatment of injuries. Discharged late Monday, Barbara Gruver, still wearing hospital clothing, was arraigned about 8:30 p.m. before District Judge James Carn on 15 charges ranging from attempted homicide and aggravated assault to terroristic threats and convicted felon not to possess a firearm.

“Do you own any real estate or vehicles,” Carn asked her.

“I own vehicles (including) the one I shot at,” the woman replied. Convicted of felony drug offenses, Gruver was committed to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $250,000 bail.