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Testimony Wraps Up In Trial Of Man Accused In Officer’s Death

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Harold Hayes Harold Hayes
Harold Hayes joined KDKA-TV in August of 1979 as a general assignment...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Testimony ended Thursday in the trial of Ronald Robinson.

He is accused in the shooting death of a man over a drug debt, as well as the fatal shooting of Penn Hills Police Officer Michael Crawshaw when the officer arrived at the scene.

After more than a week of testimony, the prosecution rested its case and then not long after that the defense rested its case without calling any witnesses.

As the testimony came to an end, the prosecution revealed just how a confession was obtained from Ronald Robinson.

A confession in the presence of his mother and her taped statement was a big factor when Robinson was reluctant to talk to police.

Detective Terry Hediger testified: “We said don’t make your mother take the stand. Own up to this. Do you want to hear her statement? He said, “Yes, I’d like to hear that. So we played a portion of it. At some point he said, ‘I’ve heard enough. You can turn it off.’”

Retired Detective Michael Garlicki testified Robinson said: “He said (expletive) went haywire and he fired some shots and he hit Mr. Morton. He heard an officer say don’t move and he said he got scared and then he opened up.”

Authorities say the AK-47 used in the shooting, fired 13 rounds at Officer Crawshaw’s police cruiser. The assault weapon was eventually found in the woods nearby and so was a semi-automatic pistol.

A teenager found Robinson’s license not far away as well.

One of the officers who came to Thursday’s court session was Clairton Police Officer James Kuzak, who was confined to a wheelchair after he was shot on the job.

“It’s just unfortunate that we’ve had too many opportunities of meeting families of lost officers or injured officers over the last three years; and unfortunately; I’m one of them,” said Kuzak. “But I hope that the fact that I’m still here can lend some solace to some of the families that, ‘Hey, you know, we feel what you feel,’ and we’re here for any bit of support we can give them.”

The lawyers and judge will go over legal issues on Friday.

The jury will return Monday for closing arguments. They were told to bring an overnight bag because they will be sequestered.

The jury will have to decide if it’s a first-degree or a second-degree murder case.

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