Pittsburgh police take man into custody after stabbings at Target in East Liberty

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Pittsburgh police took a man into custody at the Target in East Liberty after they say he stabbed three people this afternoon.

The incident began nearby on Highland Avenue and Whitfield Street, when a man cut another man's face and fled into the store at the intersection of Penn Avenue and Penn Circle, Pittsburgh police Sgt. Tom Huerbin said.

Store security told police that two men followed the man into Target searching for him, police spokeswoman Diane Richard said. The man with a knife chased one of these men out of a restroom in the front of the store, she said.

The man with the knife then "ran toward the checkout lanes and grabbed a 16-year-old female who was standing with family members and held her in front of him with knife still in hand," Ms. Richard said.

The girl was cut in the back and arm and was transported to Children's Hospital, where she is in serious condition, Ms. Richard said.

Police responded to a report of a stabbing at the store around 5:30 p.m., she said.

One man's lip was cut and one sustained deep cuts to his fingers, she said. They were transported to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital. A bystander was taken to UPMC Shadyside Hospital for chest pain, Ms. Richard said.

The man with a knife was shocked by a Taser and pepper-sprayed before being taken into custody, Sgt. Huerbin said. The man was treated for pepper spray exposure and will be held in the Allegheny County Jail. Charges are pending investigation, he said.

A police officer was also treated for exposure to pepper spray, Sgt. Huerbin said.

"None of the injuries reported appeared to be life-threatening," Ms. Richard said.

The names of those involved, including the man taken into custody and the police officer, have not been released.

Target will reopen after a contractor cleans the store, Sgt. Huerbin said.

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Lexi Belculfine: lbelculfine@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1878. Twitter: @LexiBelc. First Published March 25, 2013 10:45 PM


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