PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The family of a slain police officer rejected a plea deal of two life sentences for the man accused of killing him, in exchange for pleading guilty to murdering the officer and one other person.

Jury members were being selected for the trial of Ronald Robinson, who is accused of shooting and killing Penn Hills Police Officer Michael Crawshaw, when the defense approached the District Attorney and offered to accept a plea deal of two consecutive life sentences for the guilty plea.

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The District Attorney is required in that situation to present the offer to the family of the victim. But Crawshaw’s family rejected the deal.

Early Thursday, officials announced that a total of five jury members had been selected for the trial.

In October, Robinson’s trial was delayed when a key witness for the prosecution disappeared. Once U.S. Marshals found the witness, the presiding judge ordered him held in custody until trial.

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The jury selection process was also delayed earlier this month, when Robinson was rushed to the hospital after being found unresponsive in his cell.

The prosecutor told the judge that doctors reported whatever happened to Robinson was a “medical mystery” and he was given seizure medication.

They also said he was under the influence of marijuana, which is a contraband problem at the jail.

Robinson appeared to be having a seizure and was intubated because he couldn’t breathe on his own.

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Testimony is expected early next week.


Jury Selection Begins For Accused Penn Hills Cop Killer (11/26/2012)
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