Police: Man breaks in to Westmoreland County house, has to be rescued from nearby woods

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Penn Township police called in rescue crews this morning to help them find and arrest a suspected intruder who became "physically exhausted" and could no longer move in the Westmoreland County woods where he had been hiding, according to a press release.

Benjamin A. Staab, 24, of Trafford, faces charges of attempted burglary, attempted trespass and criminal mischief.

Investigators suspect Mr. Staab broke a window while attempted to break into a house on Home Drive in Level Green about 7:30 a.m., Penn Township police Chief John Otto said in the press release.

When police arrived, the residents said they watched the suspect, later identified as Mr. Staab, run into the woods.

State police briefly flew over the area in a helicopter to search for the suspect.

When the weather turned and prevented the crews from flying safely, Penn Township police searched the woods on foot and spotted Mr. Staab behind Bradford Square in Trafford, according to the release.

A rescue team and members of several volunteer fire departments helped clear a path to Mr. Staab and removed him from the woods.

Mr. Staab was taken to UPMC East for an evaluation, according to the release.

He is being held in the Westmoreland County Prison with his bail set at $25,000, according to online court records.

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


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