Charges pending against suspect in Penn Hills liquor store robbery

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Charges are pending against a man suspected of robbing a state liquor store in Penn Hills, police said.  

Police Chief Howard Burton said the man, whose name was not yet available, is in a local hospital being treated for injuries he suffered after running over a hill to elude police. He is expected to be formally charged tonight.

The robbery is one of several recent Wine and Spirits store thefts in the area. Penn Hills police will work with other departments and state store investigators to determine if this assailant can be linked to the others.

"It looks common," the chief said, adding that the robberies have occurred at several Wine and Spirits stores "at the same time in the morning, between 9 and 10."

Chief Burton said the man robbed the liquor store along Milltown Road sometime after 9:30 a.m. today. He got inside a white van seen leaving the area, and a state store security officer spotted him and called 911, police said.

Penn Hills officers responded and followed the van into a McDonald's parking lot, where the man jumped out and ran over a hill as the van was driven away. The chief said the suspect may have broken his leg or injured his knee in the process.

A bag police believe he carried with him as he fled contained a gun and money, he said. Police are still looking for the white van.

Last month, Monroeville police said an armed robbery at a Wine and Spirits on 3845 Northern Pike may be connected to four other local liquor store robberies, including one in Forest Hills and one in Homestead.

Molly Born: or 412-263-1944 or on Twitter @molly_born.

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