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Charleroi mayor's car, alleged crook found

| Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Frank G. Green

When Charleroi Regional Police viewed surveillance tape of the theft of a car owned by Mayor Nancy Ellis, they recognized the man in the video because they had arrested him before.

But before police could arrest the suspect for the most recent crime, he was picked up – allegedly driving Ellis' car – by state Trooper Melinda Brandt in Bentleyville on Wednesday.

Brandt charged Frank Green, 46, of 601 McKean Ave., Apt. 111, Charleroi, with receiving stolen property and driving without a valid license.

Green was placed in the Washington County Correctional Facility after he failed to post $5,000 straight cash bond.

Charleroi Regional Police additionally charged him with theft of a motor vehicle.

Green was arrested 10:20 p.m. Wednesday, just hours after he stole Ellis' burgundy 2006 Ford Focus in downtown Charleroi.

It was parked in the alley next to the Charleroi Coin Operated Laundromat, located at 301 First St., when the vehicle was stolen, police reported.

The theft was reported at 1:23 p.m.

Ellis told police she stopped at the Laundromat, and retrieved an item from the back seat of her car. She went into the Laundromat for two minutes. When she exited the store, her car was gone, police reported.

The mayor confirmed the car was unlocked and the keys were inside. The engine was not running at the time she went into the business.

Witnesses told police they saw a white male in his mid-30s jump into the car and drive off. He was wearing blue jeans and a baseball cap. At the time of the theft, the witnesses were working in and around the pipe yard at Lee Supply, located behind the Laundromat.

Those witnesses viewed surveillance footage from the business and confirmed a person caught on tape was the same man they saw take off in Ellis' car. Police also identified Green after viewing the video tape.

Charleroi Regional police have previously arrested Green several times, Officer Elijah DeFassio said.

Charleroi Regional Police arrested Green last month after he allegedly stole a GPS out of a car parked at a Sunoco gas station.

Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or cbuckley@tribweb.com.

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