Convicted felon from Murrysville found guilty of possessing guns
A convicted felon from Murrysville will likely spend at least five years in prison because he was found guilty Wednesday of possessing guns.
A Westmoreland County jury convicted Michael Signore, 52, of keeping six weapons in a bedroom gun safe, despite being prohibited to do so because he previously was found guilty of a crime.
During the half-day trial before Westmoreland County Judge John Blahovec, Signore maintained the weapons, which included several century-old rifles and a semiautomatic pistol, were not his.
He claimed someone else had peppered his home with gunfire while he was at work.
Two prosecution witnesses testified that on Nov. 14, 2011, sheriff's deputies went to Signore's home to serve him with a protection from abuse order obtained by his former live-in girlfriend.
The deputies were directed to remove any guns Signore had in the home.
During the visit, Signore joked about shooting at his three televisions in the house and suggested the bullet-riddled equipment was evidence that he was a “hell of a shot,” Assistant District Attorney Leo Ciaramitaro told jurors in an opening statement.
Signore opened a combination lock on the gun safe to open the locker, the prosecutor said.
Signore, the lone defense witness, maintained the guns belonged to his girlfriend and that he never joked about the bullet holes in the walls and in his televisions.
“I said, ‘This is a hell of a shock to me,'” Signore testified.
Signore told jurors he was able to open the gun locker only after seeing the combination written on the PFA order, but when confronted with that document by Ciaramitaro, he could not find any evidence of the combination.
The jury was told that Signore was not permitted to be in possession of firearms because he was convicted in 1995 of an assault charge.
Ciaramitaro said Signore now could receive at mandatory minimum of five years in prison for his conviction. A formal sentencing hearing will be conducted by Blahovec in about three months.
Signore awaits trial on two other unrelated cases involving allegations that he threatened his neighbors and attacked his former girlfriend.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
- Catholic Diocese of Greensburg injunction becomes permanent
- Ex-worker admits to taking money from Penn Township Sewage Authority
- Man admits preying on Lower Burrell neighbor, taking more than $100K in money, goods
- Greater Latrobe schedules will be available online
- Stormwater management plan stuck in stalemate in Unity, Latrobe, Derry Townships
- Radiation measuring device triggered by load at Yukon facility
- Pickup changes to be in place at Greensburg Salem Middle School next week
- Expectant mother from Jeannette told she’ll have to stay in custody
- Monessen man’s homicide trial set
- Police look for Derry driver who crashed into house
- Mt. Pleasant police chief Ober retires