TribLIVE

| Neighborhoods


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Charleroi robbery suspect facing trial

Daily Photo Galleries

Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 12:26 a.m.
 

Stephen Purcell waived his right to a preliminary hearing Monday on robbery charges – and his attorney made an unusual request.

Washington County Public Defender Russell Korner asked that Purcell's bond not be lowered so the Charleroi man would stay in jail and receive credit for time served.

Purcell has been in the Washington County Correctional Facility since April 5 on charges related to three robberies in a 10-day period beginning last month, but he has spent much of the past decade in jail.

Magisterial District Judge Larry Hopkins continued bond on two of the cases at $5,000 each and raised bond in the third case to $50,000 straight cash.

“It's rough in there,” Purcell told Hopkins of life behind bars. “It's rough out here.”

Purcell was released last month from the State Correctional Institution in Greene County, where he had been sentenced in March 2005 to five to 10 years in jail for the November 2004 robbery of the Cougar Mini Mart in North Charleroi.

In that case, Purcell pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery and one count of aggravated assault after leading police on a 21-minute high-speed chase that resulted in him crashing into several police cars.

Purcell was arrested April 5 at his residence after he allegedly robbed Frank's Auto Supermarket at 628 Fallowfield Ave. for the second time in a week.

He is also accused of robbing the state Wine and Spirits Store at 105 Third St., Charleroi.

Purcell faces four counts of robbery/threat to inflict bodily harm, two counts each of terroristic threats, theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property and one count each of aggravated assault, criminal attempt, and driving while operating privileges suspended or revoked.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, Purcell confessed to all three robberies.

On March 29, Purcell allegedly walked into Frank's at 3:25 p.m. and demanded money, according to the affidavit.

With a hand in his pocket, he threatened to shoot a store employee if she did not give him money, police said.

Purcell allegedly fled on foot after receiving an undetermined amount of cash.

Purcell allegedly entered the same store 3:18 p.m. April 5, grabbed the arm of a female employee, said he had a gun and told her, “You're not going anywhere.”

She yelled for another employee to call 911 and Purcell left the store.

According to the affidavit, Purcell claimed he had a gun in his pocket when he robbed the Wine and Spirits store March 26.

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

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Mon Valley

  1. Monessen man enjoys coaching youth football
  2. BVA approves new district policy manual
  3. Brownsville restaurant opens in historic home, pays homage to ‘Gone With the Wind’ plantation
  4. Perryopolis Golden Agers come to an end
  5. Vote set on Mid Mon Valley transit merger plan
  6. Revised book tells love story of fallen Civil War officer from Sewickley Twp.
  7. Boatman: Many women face unique retirement problems
  8. Mon Valley Financial Seminar Series continues
  9. Valley Art Club’s exhibit lures crowd to Monessen
  10. Mon Valley warrant sweep yields 10 arrests
  11. California cop hurt in fight with suspect
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.