Ford City basketball game ends in lockdown — again
The second robbery in five days of stores near Ford City High School led police to lock down a basketball game in the gym there Monday night while a search for the robber, believed to be the same man in both incidents, was taking place outside.
The clerk who was working at the Ford City Tobacco store at 1400 Fifth Ave. told police that about 8:26 p.m., the man entered the store, placed a gray plastic bag on the counter and demanded money.
“He told the clerk, ‘Do what I say and you won't get hurt,' ” Ford City police Sgt. John Atherton said.
The robber, who left on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash and three packs of Newport cigarettes, did not show any sign he had a weapon and made no mention of carrying one, Atherton said.
Atherton said a person outside the store saw the man flee along Fifth Avenue and onto 14th Street toward Sixth Avenue — about three blocks from the high school.
The store is less than two blocks from the Fueland gasoline station and convenience store that was robbed at about 8:30 p.m. Thursday.
The robber in that incident, who has not been caught, fits the description of the man in Monday's robbery.
“We believe it is the same suspect,” Atherton said.
In Thursday's robbery, the man had an object in his pocket which he claimed was a gun. He fled on foot with cash — and a pack of Newport cigarettes.
Atherton said the robberies have made him “deeply concerned” and officers are looking at a few leads.
“It's probably someone desperate for heroin,” Mayor Marc Mantini said. “Hopefully, we'll get the bum.”
Gym locked down again
Fans attending the game Monday night were kept in the gym by a police-ordered lockdown after the game because of the robbery investigation.
The same thing occurred Thursday during Ford City's game against Apollo-Ridge.
As play went on during the fourth quarter of Monday's game, an announcement was made over the school's speaker system asking for janitors to report to the second floor.
Once the final horn sounded, Ford City Athletic Director Denny Stewart spoke over the public address system to inform fans that they were to remain in the gym until further notice, an announcement met with frustration by many people in the stands, some of whom had been through Thursday's lockdown.
No further explanation was given to fans at the game, who were allowed to leave after about 10 minutes. Thursday's lockdown lasted about half an hour.
Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Staff writer Matt Grubba contributed to this report.
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.
- Lenape Tech opening center for adult training Thursday in Manor
- Hearing addresses questions about proposed West Franklin limestone mine
- Kittanning paving projects starting; completion expected within a week
- Ford City man arrested for making video of parking dispute
- Ford City official: Rift at heart of records request
- Valley Township couple goes all out for Halloween
- Grants boost tunnel, trail work in Clarion and Armstrong counties
- VA seeks input on services at Ford City clinic
- Ford City joining growing fight against blight