West Mifflin man sought in shooting case
By Patrick Cloonan
Published: Friday, Aug. 30, 2013, 1:16 a.m.
A West Mifflin man is sought in connection with the July 14 shooting of an Avalon woman who found herself in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Pittsburgh Crime Stoppers announced on Wednesday that it is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the apprehension of Joshua Smidansky, 19, in the wounding of Melissa Sill.
Investigators said Sill was in a car around 1 a.m. when it was caught in the crossfire between two people.
Allegheny County Police said Smidansky was identified as one of them. The other suspect has not been identified.
West Mifflin police said Sill was found shot inside a vehicle that wound up along the 500 block of Coal Street, not far from the Munhall borough line. Police said Sill was not involved in the altercation.
Police said a warrant was obtained on Aug. 15 for Smidansky's arrest on four counts each of a felony, aggravated assault, and a misdemeanor, recklessly endangering another person.
Smidansky faces a felony count of conspiracy to commit aggravated assault and a misdemeanor count of illegal possession of a firearm, according to a filing with Magisterial District Judge Richard D. Olasz Jr. in West Mifflin.
Smidansky is described as a white male, 6 feet 1 inch tall and 180 pounds, with blond hair and hazel eyes.
According to court records, he faced Olasz on two previous occasions, including one case in December in which he pleaded guilty to possession of alcoholic beverages by a minor.
Pittsburgh Crime Stoppers said anyone with information is asked to call 412-255-8477 (TIPS). Callers may remain anonymous.
Police told Trib Total Media news exchange partner WPXI-11 that Sill and a group of friends were on their way to a home in West Mifflin when their car was hit by about half a dozen bullets.
One bullet struck Sill in the lower back.
“I just couldn't imagine something happening to such a good person,” Kathleen Costello told WPXI.
Costello and two other friends of Sill, Jennifer Lynn and Nicole Snyder, set up a fund at PNC Bank to pay Sill's medical expenses.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1967, 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.
- Duquesne hopes to improve financial status
- Experience the best teacher for Clairton student
- Clairton to raise spending by $1M
- Versailles council OKs tentative plan
- Officials give OK to develop disaster plan
- McKeesport center part of Cal’s digital storytelling class project
- Driller preps for Forward decision
- Versailles fire displaces couple on Third Street