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Dravosburg man's trial for homicide, theft to resume

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Monday, Nov. 18, 2013, 3:11 a.m.
 

The trial of the accused killer and armored truck robber Kenneth J. Konias Jr. is scheduled to resume today.

While more than two dozen witnesses have testified over the course of five days, the prosecution has not yet rested its case.

One of the last matters discussed Thursday before the trial recessed for the weekend was whether photos of tattoos of money bags on Konias' knuckles that he gave himself in prison could be entered as evidence.

A determination likely will be made today.

The case is being heard by Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas Judge David R. Cashman.

Konias, 23, of Dravosburg originally requested a jury trial but changed his mind when jury selection got underway.

Konias is accused of shooting his Garda Cash Logistics workmate Michael R. Haines, 31, of East McKeesport in the back of an armored truck on Feb. 28, 2012, and stealing $2.3 million from the vehicle.

Haines was found dead in the armored truck, which Konias had parked under the 31st Street Bridge in the Strip District. Haines' death was determined to be from a single bullet in the back of the head.

Konias fled to Florida and was living in an apartment in Pompano Beach when FBI agents acting on a tip caught up with him two months later.

On the day of his arrest, Konias told FBI agents he shot Haines in self-defense after Haines pulled his service pistol on Konias. Defense attorney Charles LoPresti has stood by the argument, maintaining that Konias used poor judgment and took the money only as an afterthought.

Prosecutor Robert Schupansky said evidence and testimony from witnesses don't support Konias' claim.

Schupansky said there was no evidence in the truck or marks on Haines' body to indicate a struggle had occurred.

Last week, two of Konias' friends and a woman in Florida to whom, according to testimony, he paid $2,000 a day for sex all testified that Konias was fascinated with a 2010 movie called “The Town,” which depicts an armored car robbery.

Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1966, or eslagle@tribweb.com.

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