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Banksville woman arrested in connection with 4 robberies

| Friday, Feb. 12, 2016, 12:24 a.m.
Melissa Santoro, 28, of Banksville was charged Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016, in connection with robberies at a Sunoco and a Rite Aid.
Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
Melissa Santoro, 28, of Banksville was charged Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016, in connection with robberies at a Sunoco and a Rite Aid.

Pittsburgh police have arrested a Banksville woman in connection with a string of robberies in the Banksville Road corridor.

Melissa Santoro, 28, held up a Sunoco twice and robbed a Rite Aid in the Banksville neighborhood, and held up Jet's Pizza in neighboring Dormont, according to police.

She told police the gun she used was plastic and she needed money for pet supplies and to help her mother.

The most recent robbery occurred about 8:17 p.m. Tuesday, when police say Santoro entered the Sunoco and walked around holding a handkerchief to her face, then approached the register and pulled out a gun and demanded money.

After the cashier complied, Santoro demanded a pack of cigarettes, put the gun in her purse and left the store, police said.

A clerk at the station recognized Santoro when she came in at a later time to buy cigarettes, police said.

Santoro denied taking part in the robberies, but confessed after taking a lie detector test.

Police said Santoro stole less than $300 total.

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