Defendant to get new lawyer in murder of Monessen man
A Monessen man accused in the December murder of another city man will get a new lawyer.
Earl V. Pinkney appeared in court Thursday morning for a brief hearing after which his attorney withdrew from the case because of a conflict of interest.
Public Defender Alan J. Manderino told Westmoreland County Judge John E. Blahovec his office represented a key witness in the case against Pinkney.
“The public defender's office may represent a person who may have spoken with the district attorney's office and provided information against Mr. Pinkney,” Manderino said. “I don't know what the information is.”
Pinkney, 19, is charged with criminal homicide in connection with the Dec. 3 slaying of Chris Fincik, who was gunned down during a robbery at his Maple Avenue home, according to police.
In addition to Pinkney, police charged Chalsee L. Hughes, 19, of Duquesne with homicide. Prosecutors contend Hughes purchased the ammunition used in the shooting.
In court on Thursday, Westmoreland County District Attorney John Peck confirmed that prosecutors have spoken to witnesses who have implicated Pinkney.
Peck did not indicate who has spoken with police or if any additional charges will be filed.
During an interview Thursday afternoon, Peck said police believe more people may have been involved in the Fincik slaying.
“The case is still under investigation,” Peck said.
Pinkney and four others have been charged with attempted murder involving a case that police contend ultimately stemmed from the fatal shooting.
Police contend that the group attacked Jaisen Irwin just hours after Fincik's murder. Irwin was suspected by Pinkney and his co-defendants of spreading rumors linking them to the murder, according to authorities.
In addition to Pinkney and Hughes, Antoine Hairston, 19, of Monessen; Josh Stepoli, 18, his brother Terrance Stepoli, 20; and their sister, Samone Stepoli, 21, all face charges of attempted murder.
No trial dates are scheduled.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293.
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.
- Zoning update raises fears in Ligonier Township
- Shenefelt of North Huntingdon accused of road rage altercation in Westmoreland
- Auction nets $20,000 from ill-gotten gain in slaying, theft from Washington County woman
- Event gets new formal name: Shop ’n Save Westmoreland County Airshow, presented by Xcoal Energy & Resources in Latrobe
- Reputed major heroin trafficker in Westmoreland County pleads guilty, gets prison sentence
- $7.6M buyout at Hempfield prison site clouds sale
- Latrobe police to form DUI task force
- Baby sitter arraigned on assault charges; Hempfield woman high on heroin, state police say
- Mt. Pleasant Business District Authority picks officers
- Excela center proposal worries residents of Hempfield neighborhood
- Sale of former SCI Greensburg prison to advance despite lawmakers’ objections