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Five suspects in Connellsville nabbed in pizza-delivery robbery

| Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, 8:58 a.m.
WPXI
Cody Darrell, 18, of Connellsville is escorted out of the Connellsville police station early Thursday morning, headed for the Fayette County Booking Center in Uniontown.
WPXI
Mark Liston, 18, of Connellsville, is led out of the Connellsville Police Station by a police officer, after his arrest on Wednesday for the robbery of a pizza delivery man.

“This is the kind of stuff you hear about in larger cities,” said Connellsville Police Chief James Capitos, when discussing the armed robbery of a pizza delivery man in the city that occurred late Wednesday night.

The robbery occurred in the 100 block of Perry Street and Connellsville police were quick to make arrests.

Thursday morning, police charged Cody Darrell, 18, of 1005 Aetna St., Mark Liston, 18, of 568 Adelaide Road, Stephen Kozakovsky, 18, of 63 Gibson Terrace, all of Connellsville, and a 16-year-old Connellsville male and a 17-year-old Connellsville male with robbery/threat of serious injury, criminal conspiracy, theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property.

Connellsville police arrested the five individuals after they allegedly conspired to rob a pizza-delivery driver at gun point.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, at 11:10 p.m. Wednesday, the men called Domino's Pizza in Connellsville, using Darrell's cell phone and ordered a pizza, wings and three two-liter bottles of pop.

They instructed Domino's Pizza to deliver the pizza at a residence in the 100 block of Perry Street in Connellsville.

Capitos said the address provided to Domino's wasn't associated with the suspects but it was somewhat of a secluded area.

The delivery driver arrived at the location where Kozakovsky was waiting in front of the house. Kozakovsky told the driver he was going to get the money to pay him and walked toward the house.

At that time, the two juveniles approached the driver. The 17-year-old male pointed a gun at him and told him to get on the ground or he would shoot him.

The driver complied and was told to hand over money. The man took $100 in cash — as well as the pizza order.

The delivery man was not injured and no other injuries were reported.

Connellsville police, along with South Connellsville police and a K-9 unit with Perryopolis, quickly made arrests in the robbery.

Capitos said one of suspects was found by the K-9 unit in East Park; another was located at an area residence that he had broken into while attempting to flee and hide from the police. The third man was caught a short time later after a short foot pursuit near the Carnegie Free Library.

Capitos said the two juveniles involved were already on probation.

Capitos said robberies normally pick up after a holiday, but said Wednesday night's robbery was bizarre because five individuals planned a pizza-delivery robbery that doesn't normally happen in smaller towns.

“The officers on duty did a good job,” Capitos said. He said officers worked for four hours in apprehending the suspects.

Capitos also commended the pizza delivery driver. He said he did the right thing by complying with the orders from the robbers, especially since he was being held at gunpoint.“It's fortunate they didn't kill this guy or seriously injure him,” Capitos said. “You have to cooperate and do everything they say. Your life isn't worth $100 and a pizza.”

Darrell, Liston and Kozakovsky were arraigned via video on Thursday and placed in the Fayette County Prison. They will face District Judge Ronald Haggerty Jr. for preliminary hearings at a later date. The two juveniles were placed in a juvenile detention facility.

Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or mhofmann@tribweb.com.

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