Trial ordered in Elizabeth Township armed robbery
A McKeesport man's case was held for trial on Monday for an armed robbery in Elizabeth Township.
Bobby P. Hast, 34, is charged along with Scott A. May, 41, of Fairbanks, Fayette County, in the June 20, 2012, holdup at Central Pharmacy along Simpson Howell Road.
Magisterial District Judge Beth S. Mills found a prima facie case existed against Hast on seven counts.
He was charged with felony robbery, conspiracy, aggravated assault, possession of a prohibited firearm and theft by unlawful taking counts, as well as misdemeanor counts of weapon possession and recklessly endangering another person.
According to a police affidavit written by township police Officer Jamie Evans, Hast admitted his role in multiple robberies including the Central Pharmacy holdup during an interview at the county jail in February.
On April 28, May waived felony counts of robbery and conspiracy to trial in Mills' courtroom. County police said he admitted being the getaway driver as well as providing his wife's gun to Hast.
County police said May's wife has not admitted to any role in the heist and was not charged.
Hast remained in the county jail in lieu of $10,000 bond.
Scott May remained free on his own recognizance in the Elizabeth Township case, but on $500 or 10 percent of $5,000 bond pending a hearing on other charges filed in March in West Mifflin. Hast has multiple charges against him; May has felony counts of robbery and conspiracy in that borough.
A hearing on those charges was scheduled before Magisterial District Judge Richard D. Olasz Jr. but was continued until Monday at 1:30 p.m. in the courtroom of White Oak Magisterial District Judge Thomas G. Miller Jr.
Elizabeth Township police Chief Robert McNeilly said information Evans obtained from West Mifflin police Detective Anthony Topolnak led to arrest warrants for Hast and May in the Central Pharmacy case.
Central Pharmacy closed in October 2012, capping 50 years in the business. Owner Jeff Strutt said robberies there in 2008, 2009 and 2012 were factors but not the only reason.
“This is a good time to sell,” Strutt said. “It's time to slow down.”
Strutt sold much of his business' merchandise to the Giant Eagle pharmacy in Elizabeth. A phone number formerly associated with Central Pharmacy now rings to the Giant Eagle pharmacy.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writerfor Trib Total Media.
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