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Good Samaritans Help Stop Assault And Robbery In Greene Co.

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Chris Kunicki)

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Chris Kunicki)

christinedantonio Christine D'Antonio
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Two good Samaritans came to the aid of a Greene County store owner who was being assaulted Wednesday afternoon by a man who later told police he is homeless and addicted to heroin.

Rich Rosendale says he believes angels were on his side during the robbery at his store in Carmichaels.

The suspect, identified as Matthew King, is accused of assaulting the 68-year-old business owner.

“He just pounds me with his fist, left and right, then he [dragged] me to the back room and he duct taped my wrist, my ankles, my eyes, my mouth,” said Rosendale. “I gave myself up for dead.”

Across the street, two Route 21 Homes Inc. employees saw what was unfolding and immediately sprang into action.

They called 911, and then along with Cumberland Township Det. Tony Gismondi, made sure King wasn’t going to get away.

According to a criminal complaint, Gismondi and the two witnesses struggled with King outside the store. Gismondi attempted to subdue King using pepper spray and a Taser. King removed the Taser probes from his body and ran uphill and into a field by Route 21 Mobile Home Park. He was apprehended with help from Miller, Cumberland Township K-9 officer Artis and Greene County sheriff’s deputies.

“He tried running up the hill there in our park and that’s when I chased him down and tackled him,” Eric Smith, one of the Good Samaritans. “It took three of us and he still got away. He was Tazered and pepper sprayed.”

The criminal complaint reported that Rosendale suffered severe injuries to his face, including swelling and multiple possible broken bones. Rosendale told police King also took his wallet and checkbook from him.

Rosendale was taken by ambulance to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown, W.Va.

Cumberland Township Police say while they don’t normally advise people to get involved in something like this, what Smith and Tom Christopher did not only helped them and the Greene County Sheriff’s Office arrest King, but more importantly, it likely saved Rosendale’s life.

A preliminary arraignment was held Wednesday evening before Greene County Magisterial District Judge Glenn Bates.

King is charged with robbery, aggravated assault, flight to avoid apprehension, disarming law enforcement, theft by unlawful taking, unlawful restraint, simple assault, resisting arrest and multiple summary offenses.

He is being held in the Greene County Jail on $100,000 bond.

King’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 30.

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