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Tips from public lead to arrest in Hempfield robbery

| Monday, July 17, 2017, 1:39 p.m.
State police are seeking help identifying this man who robbed a Sunoco gas station in Hempfield.
William Ruby III
State police are seeking help identifying this man who robbed a Sunoco gas station in Hempfield.
State police are seeking help identifying this man who robbed a Sunoco gas station in Hempfield.

Tips from the public helped state police identify a man they believe robbed a Hempfield convenience store last week.

William E. Ruby III, 32, told investigators he used the $100 he stole from the Sunoco cash register late Wednesday to buy heroin, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

State police released surveillance photos of a suspect the same day, and Trooper Jason Morgan reported in a criminal complaint that he received four separate phone calls identifying Ruby as the culprit.

Ruby pretended to use the Route 30 store's phone for a few minutes before jumping over the counter to grab the cash while the register was open, police said. The store clerk identified Ruby as the suspect from a photo lineup.

When Ruby was arrested on an unrelated warrant Friday, he confessed to the robbery, according to the affidavit. He is being held in the Westmoreland County Prison on $50,000 bond on charges of robbery, theft and receiving stolen property.

A preliminary hearing is set for Friday. Ruby did not have an attorney listed in online court records.

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