SOUTH PARK (KDKA) – A man is in custody after leading police on a chase, injuring one officer, and carjacking at least two vehicles while trying to get away.
It all started when Baldwin Police attempted to serve a warrant to the suspect’s girlfriend, Amy Calabrese, at a home in the 1100-block of Bonnie Drive this afternoon.
“Apparently, Richey had a warrant for a probation violation and he went upstairs,” said Caabrese. “He started freaking out. He’s like, ‘I’ll get you out, I’ll get you out.’”
According to Allegheny County Police, when officers approached the home there was a man, identified as Richard DeSabetino, in the front yard. Police told him to wait, but he jumped in a car and ran over one of the officers in his attempt to get away, dragging him for a time.
KDKA’s David Highfield Reports:
“He goes to get in a car and the officer says, ‘Hold on, wait a minute there.’ He gets in his car. He runs over an officer, hits an officer with his car. The officer’s in the hospital now,” Allegheny County Police Superintendent Charles Moffatt. “From there, he drags the officer, the officer regains his footing, he gets hit again. The other Baldwin officer fires at the actor, the actor takes off.”
A high-speed chase then ensued through several South Hills communities until the suspect wrecked his truck in South Park, and fled on foot.
“We saw him run across the street with a ripped shirt and a gun, and I looked at him and he looked at me,” said Drake Hudson, a neighbor.
Police started getting multiple reports of sightings in Grandview Farms and descended on the area.
Police say the suspect stole an Oldsmobile sedan, but hit a truck as he tried to exit the neighborhood.
“I saw that car right there just clip a white SUV, and I saw a guy, he was a little bigger, get out and his head was hurt and everything, and I was out and cops were running by with guns drawn and dogs and everything,” said Alec Mastovich, a witness who captured cell phone video of the incident.
Neighbors say shots were fired, but the suspect fled back into the neighborhood where he’s accused of carjacking a vehicle, only to wreck it, too.
Then, DeSabetino was cornered by the police and finally taken into custody.
“He shot there, and then I heard shots over there. When they got over there, I could hear them echoing over here,” said Bill Richter, a witness.
KDKA’s John Shumway Reports:
The officer that was run over in Baldwin was rushed to the hospital for treatment of a head injury.
“The officer’s in the hospital now,” said Moffatt. “The officer’s going to be, we hope he’s going to be okay. He’s getting a CT scan.”
There’s no word on his condition.
No officers were injured in the gunfire.
DeSabetino is also in the hospital.
“The actor’s in the hospital being treated for his wound. He was shot one time,” Moffatt added.
DeSabetino’s girlfriend says police initially came to the home to arrest her because she allegedly sold a stolen bicycle to a pawn shop. She says she didn’t know it was stolen.
She said her boyfriend panicked when police showed up because he was wanted on a probation violation. He bolted out of the house with their baby daughter, but he put the girl down in the yard just before he got into the car.
KDKA’s David Highfield Reports:
She says an officer grabbed onto the side of the car, and tried to pull him out. The other officer then came over. According to Calabrese, at least two shots were fired. At least one bullet went through the window and smashed out the rear window. That’s when DeSabetino stepped on the gas and the officer fell off the hood and hurt his head in the fall.
“I don’t know what happened with Richey. I’d like to know. I hope he’s okay,” said Calabrese. “His daughter loves him very, very much. We love him very much, and [the officer], he’s a great cop and I hope he’s okay. This was just… Richey’s not a bad guy. He’s just really misunderstood and I hope he’s okay.”
Calabrese says she believes DeSabetino did not have a gun.