Trial ordered in vehicle sale case
By Chris Buckley
Published: Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, 12:21 a.m.
A Bentleyville man accused of impersonating a constable during auto sale deals involving three people was ordered to stand trial.
Timothy Rossell, 23, of 721 Main St., waived his right to a preliminary hearing Tuesday before Magisterial District Judge Curtis Thompson in Bentleyville.
Three counts of identity theft were withdrawn.
Among the charges against Rossell in connection with three separate incidents are theft by unlawful taking (auto theft), fraud and impersonating a public servant.
The complaints, filed by the Southwest Regional Police Department last month, claim Rossell identified himself as a Pennsylvania state constable in one incident and a Missouri state trooper in another.
Rossell was returned to the Washington County Correctional Facility in lieu of $75,000 bond.
“We're glad to be able to bring this further in the legal process,” Southwest Regional Chief John Hartman said.
Alleged victim Sara Edwards credited Southwest Regional for apprehending Rossell.
On Dec. 15, 2012, Southwest Regional charged Rossell with forgery, identity theft, deceptive business practices, theft by deception, unauthorized use of automobiles and impersonating a public servant.
According to police, Jeffery Paul of Glassport placed an advertisement on Craigslist to sell his Ford Crown Victoria.
Paul told police Rossell identified himself as John Tobisti, a Pennsylvania state constable, when they met Dec. 15, 2012, at True Value Hardware in Bentleyville. Rossell allegedly told Paul he needed the vehicle for work. Rossell took possession of the vehicle but never paid for it, police said.
On Dec. 21, 2012, Sara and Douglas Edwards of Bentleyville agreed to sell their 2005 Ford F-250 truck to Rossell, who allegedly identified himself as Timothy Brandhorst.
Rossell allegedly failed to pay for the vehicle. He was charged by Southwest Regional with theft by deception, identity theft and fraudulent business practices.
On March 20, 2013, Rossell was charged in connection with a third alleged incident.
Police allege that on Dec. 1, 2012, Levi Mattey of Charleroi agreed to purchase a vehicle from Rossell — who identified himself as Timothy Michael Keller — for $650 plus $150 for fuel. Rossell allegedly identified himself as a Missouri state trooper relocating to Pennsylvania. Mattey told police he paid for the vehicle but never received it.
Southwest charged Rossell with forgery, theft by deception and impersonating a public servant.
Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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