Donora woman arrested, husband wanted on warrant

November 30, 2012

A Donora woman was arrested Wednesday and a warrant obtained for the arrest of her husband after they allegedly forced their way into a neighbor’s home last week after a confrontation.

Heather Rae Zaldonis, 34, of 519 Castner Ave., was arraigned Wednesday before District Judge Mark Wilson on seven counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated assault and one count each of burglary and hindering apprehension.

A warrant was issued by Wilson for husband, Robert A. Zaldonis Jr., 43, on charges including 14 counts of aggravated assault, seven counts of reckless endangerment and one count each of burglary, criminal trespass and discharge of a firearm into an occupied structure.

Robert Zaldonis and his wife reportedly got into an argument with a resident of 519 Rear Castner Nov. 20, about trespassing. The two reportedly went back to their home and obtained Robert Zaldonis’ Ruger .45-caliber pistol.

The couple returned to the neighbor’s home and banged on the door. The occupants of the residence, Deaubre and Jamie Lightfoot, Michael Chaney Jr., Kyle Fisher, Dashawn Holmes, Joshua Wardlaw and James Foster, saw the gun and ran to the living room, police said.

Robert Zaldonis reportedly kicked in the front door, which was dead-bolted, and entered the home with his wife. He allegedly brandished the weapon at the occupants, screamed at them and threatened to shoot them. He also allegedly broke a glass coffee table. As he left the home, Robert Zaldonis allegedly fired a shot through the outside wall in the direction of the living room. The shot hit the floor joists and did not enter the room.

Minutes later, the couple returned to the home in an attempt to make amends. Jamie Lightfoot tried to slide behind Robert Zaldonis and leave the house. But he brushed up against the other man, who then shoved him. Police said a large fight ensued and Robert Zaldonis was taken to Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh for treatment.

Heather Zaldonis is accused of giving false information to police, claiming her husband did not have a gun and did not shoot anyone. She then told officers he had a gun but did not know anything about a shooting. She eventually told police the gun was in the kitchen above the refrigerator. Police found the gun with three live rounds and a spent shell.

She was placed in the Washington County jail on $25,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is tentatively set for Wednesday before Wilson.

Kathie O. Warco has covered the police beat and transportation for the Observer-Reporter for more than 25 years. She graduated from Duquesne University with a degree in journalism.

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