Export brother, sister suspected in robberies to support heroin habit
A brother and sister were ordered to stand trial Tuesday in connection with two armed robberies and a jewelry theft from their grandmother to support their heroin habits.
District Judge Charles Conway made the ruling after preliminary hearings for Cory Joseph Dusch, 23, and Katie Marie Dusch, 27, both of Export.
Both faces charges in three cases including six counts each of receiving stolen property and theft, two counts of robbery and single counts each of conspiracy, terroristic threats, simple assault, attempted assault, reckless endangerment, conspiracy to commit robbery and conspiracy to receive stolen property.
Katie Dusch faces additional charges of driving while operating privilege is suspended or revoked.
The pair is accused of robbing Choice Cigarette Outlet on Route 22 in Murrysville on Sept. 30 and Export Laundromat on Oct. 28 and pawning jewelry stolen from their grandmother on Oct. 25.
Nancy Hussion testified during a hearing for both defendants that as she was finishing her shift at Choice Cigarette, a man dressed in black came in with a gun.
“I heard someone screaming at me to hurry up and get out front,” Hussion said. “He just kept telling me not to do anything stupid.”
The suspect took $113 and a few packs of cigarettes, Hussion testified.
Trooper Brian Gross testified that Cory Dusch admitted to robbing Choice Cigarette and Export Laundromat and taking his grandmother's jewelry. Dusch told the trooper that his sister was the getaway driver in both robberies and gave him the stolen jewelry to pawn for $325.
Gross testified that Cory Dusch said they were “fiending, jonesing” for drugs when they allegedly conspired to commit the three crimes.
“I used the robbery money to pay for the drugs,” Cory Dusch said, according to Gross.
Their grandmother, Sally Flinn, testified that she set out a gold cross necklace on the morning of Oct. 25.
“I was going to put it on if I went out that evening,” she said.
After a visit from Katie and Cory Dusch, Flinn testified that when she went to bed she noticed the necklace was missing. It and other jewelry belonging to Flinn were later found at Direct Jewelry Outlet in Murrysville.
Katie and Cory Dusch remain in the Westmoreland County Prison. Police searched their home and seized firearms and clothing that match the description of that worn by the robber, Gross said.
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or firstname.lastname@example.org.