Pittsburgh police seek suspects after drug deal goes bad in Lawrenceville

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When two men got into a car in Lawrenceville Tuesday night, they initially thought they were conducting a marijuana deal, Pittsburgh police said. Instead, police said, their meeting lead to a chase, a report of a possible kidnapping and a car crash.

No arrests have been made.

Police spokeswoman Diane Richard said in a news release that a 21-year-old man from Forest Hills flagged down Zone 2 police officers near the intersection of Stanton Avenue and Woodbine Street shortly before 11 p.m.

That man told police that he and his 19-year-old friend from Stanton Heights were at a friend’s home in Stanton Heights when he received a call from a man who wanted to buy marijuana from him.

The Forest Hills man and his friend got into a car with the man who wanted to buy marijuana from them and another man he did not recognize who pulled out a gun and said “This is going to be a robbery,” Ms. Richard said.

The Forest Hills man told police the two men drove them to a “secluded area” in Garfield, took their marijuana, iPhone and wallet and forced them back into the car at gunpoint. The man he did not recognize told him to call his girlfriend and bring $500 or “she will lose her boyfriend,” Ms. Richard said.

The pair took the Forest Hills man and his friend to his girlfriend’s home in Stanton Heights, where they forced her into the car as well, Ms. Richard said. She said the Forest Hills man and his 19-year-old friend jumped out of the car and flagged down police while the girlfriend remained in the car.

Zone 2 police followed the car until someone jumped out and they began chasing after him. During that chase, Ms. Richard said, they received word that the car had crashed into another car near the intersection of Stanton and McCandless avenues.

Two witnesses to the crash told police two men ran away from the car after the crash, Ms. Richard said. Officers found a gun inside it.

Ms. Richard said medics treated the Forest Hills man’s friend for injuries to the hip, shoulder and wrist that he sustained when he jumped from the car. The woman declined treatment.

Zone 2 police continue to investigate.

Liz Navratil: lnavratil@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1438 or on Twitter @LizNavratil.

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