Penn Hills man accused in hit-run in Harmar that seriously injured pedestrian
Police accuse a Penn Hills man of being the hit-and-run driver who struck a pedestrian last Friday in Harmar.
Allegheny County police say Robert R. Leaf, 47, of the 400 block of Billy Drive ran a red light on his way to work in West Deer.
According to police, the right front of a car hit Victor Tolbert, 54, of Pittsburgh as he was walking in a crosswalk across Freeport Road at Route 910 about 7:15 a.m., heading toward the Giant Eagle Express store.
When Harmar police arrived, Tolbert was lying in the northbound lanes. He was flown to Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh with leg and upper-body injuries.
He was initially in critical condition and has been upgraded to serious condition as of Thursday night.
Witnesses said they saw a larger, white four-door sedan with a landau or darker-colored roof traveling northbound on Freeport Road.
According to witnesses, some traffic had stopped for the red light when the white car went through the light “at a high rate of speed.”
Police say a Port Authority bus surveillance video shows another car coming to a stop at the red light and the white car coming up behind it.
The white car moved into the curb lane, continued through the intersection and struck Tolbert, police allege.
County police Superintendent James Moffatt said a county detective learned that the car being sought may have been owned by Leaf.
Last Sunday, police went to Leaf's house, where they saw a white Ford Victoria parked. The car had front-end and windshield damage and a blue tarp was draped over the front end, police said.
In arrest papers, a detective said Leaf fled into the house's basement with two Rottweiler dogs, but a family member intervened and Leaf was arrested.
Police said Leaf told them he was driving the Ford to work at a West Deer grocery store last Friday.
He said he was going to the Harmar McDonald's along Freeport Road when he drove through a yellow light and “hit something, maybe I hit something.”
Police said Leaf acknowledged that he tried to beat the light and didn't stop to see if anyone was injured.
They say he drove through business parking lots, went home, parked the car and called off work.
Leaf is charged with causing an accident with injury, running a red light, failing to report an accident and reckless driving.
He was arraigned, posted $5,000 bond and was released pending a preliminary hearing scheduled for Monday by Harmar District Judge David J. Sosovicka.
Chuck Biedka is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4711 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Out-of-control car strikes four vehicles, building in Verona
- Allegheny Township home destroyed by fire
- New Kensington Council names new police chief
- Experts calling for late fall foliage bloom in Southwestern Pa.
- ATI claims operations, production meet expectations; workers refute statement
- ‘Restaurant: Impossible’ tackles New Kensington eatery
- Upper Burrell to review minimum distance between homes, gas wells
- Man found dead along Kiski Township trail
- Vandergrift, East Vandergrift sewer separation projects near completion
- Kiski Valley Water Pollution Control Authority to charge new sewage customers $510
- Avonmore man dies in head-on crash in Washington Township