Alleged robber turns himself in to police

May 9, 2013
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Aaron Kendeall / Observer-Reporter
Shayne Coffield hides his face from cameras Thursday as he is escorted from his arraignment by Washington police Detective Dan Rush, center, and Lt. Dan Stanek. Coffield surrendered Thursday to face charges stemming from a Jan. 21 robbery of Isaly’s in Canton Township and the March 27 holdup of a Uni-Mart in Washington, in which a clerk was shot in the leg. Order a Print
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Shayne Charles Coffield

A Washington man who has been on the lam for a month after he was charged with shooting a convenience store clerk during a robbery in Washington and also robbing a store in Canton Township turned himself in to police Thursday morning.

Washington police Detective Dan Rush said he got a call from a man identifying himself as a friend of Shayne Charles Coffield.

The 23-year-old, of 247 W. Hallam Ave., is charged by city police with attempted homicide, robbery, aggravated assault, simple assault and a firearms violation for the March 27 robbery at the Uni-Mart on East Maiden Street in which a clerk was shot in the left leg. State police charged him with robbery, theft, terroristic threats and simple assault for the Jan. 21 holdup of Isaly’s, 2400 Jefferson Ave.

“The friend asked if he would get in trouble if (Coffield) would show up,” Rush said. “I told him that he wouldn’t. A few minutes later, Coffield showed up at the back door of the police station. I advised him of his rights, but he is not making any statements.”

As he sat in the courtroom of District Judge Robert Redlinger for his arraignment just after 10 a.m., Coffield did not look like a man who had been on the run for the last month. He appeared to have a fresh haircut. He wore a clean, gray and white pullover shirt and dark jeans. Even the tread on the soles of his tennis shoes appeared to be new.

Rush believes Coffield’s mother may have encouraged him to turn himself in.

“He may have been in West Virginia,” Rush said Thursday. “I believe I was only a day away from finding him.”

“I think he was honoring his mother’s wishes by coming in,” he added. “Plus, I don’t think he wanted any of his friends to get in trouble.”

Trooper Thomas Kress, who filed the charges against for the Isaly’s robbery, said he was happy Coffield is off the streets.

Coffield and Christopher Pitzarella, 23, of Washington, were charged in the Uni-Mart robbery. Pitzarella, who is charged with robbery and theft, waived his case to court last month.

Michael Stienstraw Jr., 26, of Canton, was charged by Kress with robbery, theft, terroristic threats, simple assault and theft as Coffield’s accomplice in the Isaly’s robbery. Coffield allegedly had a knife when he jumped on the counter of the store while Stienstraw allegedly carried a baseball bat.

Coffield was placed in the Washington County jail on $225,000 bond. Redlinger set bond at $150,000 for the Uni-Mart robbery and $75,000 on the Isaly’s robbery. A preliminary hearing is set for Wednesday in Central Court.

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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