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Primanti Brothers manager admits to stealing $30K

| Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 2:16 a.m.

A Primanti Brothers operations manager was arrested by Allegheny County police on Monday on charges that he stole $30,064 from three restaurants, including $16,177 from a North Versailles Township outlet.

County police said Benjamin Bartilson, 30, of White Oak oversaw operations at outlets in North Versailles, Moon and Robinson townships and Pleasant Hills.

Police said he admitted in texts to an operations supervisor that he took deposits from North Versailles, Moon and Robinson restaurants and gambled them away at a casino.

“I don't even know how much I lost,” according to a Feb. 24 text quoted in a police affidavit. “Don't know how nobody's caught (it) at the office yet.”

County detective Jackelyn Weibel said officials at Primanti Brothers offices on Pittsburgh's South Side found out around the same time as the texts that $16,177 was taken on Feb. 12-23 at North Versailles, $9,159 on Feb. 19-23 at Robinson and $4,728 on Feb. 22 and 23 at Moon.

“Primanti Brothers has cameras at the locations that should show (Bartilson) retrieving these deposits from the respective locations,” the affidavit said.

No theft was alleged by county detectives from the Primanti Brothers restaurant in Pleasant Hills.

Bartilson was arraigned on Monday night in Pittsburgh before Magisterial District Judge Scott H. Schricker on three felony counts of theft by unlawful taking and a misdemeanor count of misapplication of entrusted assets.

He was released on his own recognizance pending a preliminary hearing on March 20 at 1 p.m. before North Versailles Magisterial District Judge Robert L. Barner.

Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1967, or pcloonan@tribweb.com.

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