Player's case likely to stay in juvenile courts
It's unlikely the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office will appeal a judge's ruling to send a high school football player's armed robbery case to juvenile court and, even if it did, winning would be “almost impossible,” a legal expert said on Monday.
Harry Randall, 18, of Swissvale could have spent several years in prison if convicted as an adult of robbing a pizza delivery man at gunpoint, but under the juvenile court system, a conviction would mean Randall would be released by his 21st birthday.
Common Pleas Judge Anthony M. Mariani on Friday told Randall it would be his “last chance” to stay out of prison. The decision may allow Randall to attend college; he was offered football scholarships by West Virginia, Temple and Georgia Tech.
Randall's attorney, Kaitlin Euler, did not return calls and his mother, Katrina Goodman, could not be reached.
College coaches are not permitted to comment on recruits who have not signed letters of intent, according to NCAA rules, but Woodland Hills head coach George Novak said they knew about the charges against Randall when they offered him scholarships. Mariani's decision hasn't changed their minds.
Mariani told Randall when he moved his case to juvenile court: “I'm not doing this because you're a starting quarterback on the football team. I am doing this because you have athletic abilities that can focus you. The education side of this is much more significant to me than the football side.”
Randall has a juvenile court hearing scheduled for Tuesday in Shuman Juvenile Detention Center.
The judge has discretion to decide where the case is tried, as long as the basis for his decision is not improper, said New Castle attorney David Acker, who is not connected with the case.
Mariani's reasoning — that Randall would be better off at college than in prison — was not improper, Acker said.
“Harry hasn't been an angel, but he has the opportunity to do something with his life,” Novak said. “He's always been trustworthy to me. If he said he didn't do it, then I gotta support that.”
Police allege Randall and another man, E.W. Richardson, ordered pizzas on March 6 from Veltre's Pizza and then robbed delivery man Timothy Pfadt at gunpoint of the pizzas and his wallet.
Adam Brandolph is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach him at 412-391-0927 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pa. spends millions on death penalty cases that rarely end in execution
- Shaler man charged in death of girl, 6, not prosecuted in repeated alcohol cases
- Diminishing number of pilots takes toll on small airports in Western Pa.
- Munhall standoff leads to prostitution arrests in Pittsburgh’s South Side
- 17-year-old male killed, 15-year-old female shot in McKeesport
- Federal judge orders Pittsburgh to reimburse law firm over deposition McLay left early
- Lawsuit claims Plum School District ignored racially-motivated assaults against black students
- Would-be Troy Hill carjackers scared off by sirens
- One man dead in North Braddock shooting
- Police seek man who robbed Oakland bank
- Counter attackers by tossing items, experts advise college students