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Altoona Man Facing Aggravated Assault Charges

Police say an Altoona man is facing charges after taping a razor blade to the hand railings leading up the steps to a local church Sunday afternoon.

According to the Altoona Police Department, 30-year-old Benjamin Brower Jr. is charged with attempted aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, institutional vandalism of a place of worship, recklessly endangering another person, trespass and harassment.

Police say Brower was seen on surveillance video around 3 p.m. walking onto the Salvation Army Church property located on 6th Ave.

Investigators say Brower was wearing red shorts and an open vest displaying a swastika that was tattooed on his chest.

They say Brower is seen taping a razor blade to the metal hand railing leading up the steps to the front doors of the church.

Police note that the soup kitchen operating out of the church was scheduled to open at 4:30 p.m.

The pastor of the church saw Brower’s act on surveillance video and removed the razor blade before anyone was hurt, according to police.

Brower was taken into custody and is being held at the Blair County Prison.

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