Serial thief sentenced to prison term
A Fayette County man who twice stole vehicles while fleeing from police will serve as many as 20 years in prison on burglary and theft charges.
Jason Seth Stewart, 46, of Connellsville Township was sentenced on Thursday to 71/2to 20 years for 17 separate incidents, most of which occurred in June in various parts of the county.
In addition, President Judge John F. Wagner Jr. ordered Stewart to pay a total of $41,000 in restitution to numerous victims.
Stewart attributed his actions to a drug addiction.
“I just want to apologize to the victims, Your Honor,” Stewart testified.
They included Connellsville Area School District, Miedel's Restaurant in Connellsville Township, Everson VFW, Cowboy's Place bar in Bullskin, a barbershop in Upper Tyrone and numerous individuals.
Stewart stole cars, ATVs, tools, auto parts and cash, among other items, according to criminal complaints.
In at least two of the incidents, Stewart stole a motorcycle and an ATV while fleeing from police as they attempted to apprehend him, according to criminal complaints.
Stewart ran from officers when they tried to take him into custody on June 17 at an Upper Tyrone residence, according to a criminal complaint. As he was fleeing, Stewart broke into a shed on King's Hill Road and stole a motorcycle, police said.
A few days later, on June 21, troopers were attempting to apprehend Stewart at the Bullskin Sheetz when he fled in a stolen sport utility vehicle. Stewart abandoned the SUV on North Belle View Road but managed to elude officers by stealing an ATV, police said.
Wagner ordered Stewart to undergo drug and alcohol treatment during his incarceration.
Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or firstname.lastname@example.org.