Confusion Over Cook Forest Standoff Causes Turmoil for Local Teacher

john-t-macbethSIGEL, Pa. (EYT) – John T. MacBeth heard the sirens go off in the Cook Forest area Saturday morning and didn’t think much of it.

He went for a run. He came back and heard sirens again – and then went for a ride on his mountain bike.

“I figured there was a fire somewhere,” said MacBeth.

John and his family live about four miles from MacBeth’s Store – the site of a police standoff that began on Saturday around 9:30 a.m. The standoff concluded with the suspect surrendering to police late Sunday morning.

John, who is an Elementary Science Teacher at Brookville Area School District, said he went to church on Sunday morning with his family and when they returned home, that’s when “the flood gates opened.”

He read exploreClarion.com’s article on the standoff and soon realized that his second cousin – John M. MacBeth – was the suspect who surrendered earlier that morning at MacBeth’s Store.

Mass confusion ensued as friends, co-workers, and others wondered if John T. MacBeth was the man involved in the standoff.

The confusion was understandable. Both men are 47-years-old. They share the same name. They live along the same stretch of Route 36 in the Cook Forest area.

“I was getting calls from all over the country,” said John T. “A friend from California called to see what was going on; a friend from Alabama called; co-workers called.”

John T. was pro-active – calling his superintendent, his principal, and a school board member – just to let them know he was not the man involved in the standoff.

John T. told exploreClarion.com that he doesn’t want the situation to be about him, but hopes to clear up some of the confusion.

“The police officers did a great job in working through this situation,” said John T. “I hope all the best for (John M.’s) family.”

(Photo: Brookville Area School District Teacher John T. MacBeth)


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