Monday, February 23, 2009


“just get my damn knife”
Carlisle Township – Sign of the times? Perhaps. Two repo men were attempting to snag a pick up truck out of a driveway on Grafton Road late Sunday night when the owner of the truck pulled a gun on them.

Marcus Berndt and Matt Watson were working for Midwest Recovery when they were detailed to 2345 Grafton Road in Carlisle Township to repo a 2002 Ford Ranger. According to Berndt and Watson they had backed their tow truck into the driveway and began hooking up the Ranger just after 10 p.m. Sunday. Just as they were ready to pull out of the driveway, a man, later identified as Scott Birney, approached them, pointing a handgun to the face of Berndt yelling “put this fucking truck down or I’ll shoot your ass.” At this point Berndt yelled “gun” to his partner – Watson then took off running towards the street and called 9-1-1.

Watson then started to pull out of the driveway with the Ranger as Birney jumped into the pick up truck and was pointing the gun at Watson yelling at him to stop. Watson stopped the truck on Grafton Road.

At this point Briney’s wife arrived and began talking to Berndt for a moment before her husband yelled to her, “just get my damn knife.” According to Berndt the wife did as she was asked and returned a short time later with a knife. Mr. Birney then started chasing the guys around the truck with the knife – the repo guys then got away from Birney and the trucks. Birney then began cutting the straps that held the Ranger to the tow truck. He then attempted to drive the pick up off the tow truck, getting it stuck. Even with it stuck Birney continued trying to drive it off the tow truck.

It was at this time that Deputies arrived and found the tow truck stopped in the road facing west in the east bound lane of Grafton Road. Deputies spotted Birney standing near the Ranger while the repo guys were standing off the road near the wood line.

Deputies, with the assistance of K-9 Officer Ozzy, took Birney into custody. Deputies noted smelling an odor of alcohol on Birney and said that he was unable to walk without assistance and that his speech was slurred.

Deputies ran into another problem while arresting Mr. Birney – his wife.

Tonya L. Birney, upset with her husband being arrested, began screaming at the Deputies to let him go. Mrs. Birney was then taken into custody as well.

Deputies say that while speaking to the repo guys they both said that they feared for their lives, they both believed Birney was going to shoot them.

Birney told Deputies that although he did damage the tow truck, he denied having a handgun. Beyond that Birney refused to say anything else.

While Deputies were performing an inventory on Mrs. Birney’s car – so it could be towed – they recovered two large kitchen knives and another cutting took on the front passenger seat.

Deputies then began to search around the driveway of Birney’s residence and located a .380 caliber Bersa brand handgun.

Mr. Scott Birney has been charged with Aggravated Robbery, having weapons while intoxicated, vandalism, aggravated menacing, tampering with evidence and possession of criminal tools.

Mrs. Tonya Birney was charged with complicity to aggravated robbery, possession of criminal tools, obstruction of justice and complicity to vandalism.



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