Monessen grad killed in McKeesport

| Friday, Feb. 24, 2012

McKEESPORT — Police are investigating the fatal shooting of a former Monessen man.

McKeesport police Capt. of Detectives Tim Hanna said officers were called to the HiView Gardens apartment complex off Coursin Street 2:05 a.m. Thursday for a shooting in the parking lot.

A male victim — identified by the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's office as Arron Crable, 23, of Clairton — was taken to UPMC McKeesport where he was pronounced dead at 4:32 a.m.

Crable is a Monessen High School graduate.

An unidentified female shooting victim was treated at the McKeesport hospital and transferred to a trauma center in Pittsburgh. Hanna said she was believed to be in stable condition.

Details of what led to the shooting were not available. Hanna said the victims were found in the HiView parking lot near building 520.

As of presstime Thursday, there had been no arrests in connection with the shootings.

McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko said he was disheartened to hear about the shooting.

"I'm taking this pretty tough, this being the first homicide under my time as mayor," said Cherepko, who was sworn in last month.

Cherepko said he has faith that police, the Allegheny County District Attorney's office, local churches and community leaders are doing all they can to reduce violence in the city, but, "unfortunately, we still have incidents that occur like this now and then."

Cherepko said the city is trying to prevent crime, noting police foot patrols took place at the apartment complex about an hour before the shooting occurred.

He said community involvement is key to reducing crime, but added, "I don't think you ever stop it totally."

Allegheny County police also are investigating the shooting.

Retired Monessen High School Principal Randy Marino said Crable was a jovial and helpful student who played football for the school and was in the band.

Marino said he heard about the shooting incident while visiting the high school Thursday morning.

"He was a very, very good kid. It's sad," Marino said. "He actually was an office assistant with our school counselor. I would see him a good bit in the office. He had a great personality. It's a shocker."

Crable's mother, Fontana, has been an educator in the Monessen School District for 39 years, Superintendent Linda Marcolini said.

She currently is teaching at the elementary center.

Marcolini said the school was notified of Crable's death Thursday morning, and grief counseling for students and staff members was offered throughout the school day.

"We did some quick actions. This morning, we had a staff meeting," Marcolini said. "It's very difficult. This morning was the most difficult. We're trying to hold together for our students."

Staff writer Jeff Pikulsky contributed to this report.

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