Point Marion man sentenced for Dunkard robbery

May 23, 2014
Joseph Richard Zgela III

WAYNESBURG – A Point Marion man was sentenced in Greene County Court Wednesday to 4 ½ to 9 years in prison for a robbery Jan. 19 in Dunkard Township.

Joseph Richard Zgela III, 33, of 14 4th St., pleaded guilty to robbery threatening serious bodily injury, firearms not to be carried without a license, recklessly endangering another person, resisting arrest, criminal trespass and retail theft.

Zgela was seen breaking into vehicles outside the residence of Stephen Zalar, 234 Cemetery Hill Road, Dilliner. When Zgela entered Zalar’s truck, he was confronted by Zalar who demanded he get out of the truck and exit his property.

When Zgela did not comply, Zalar fired a shotgun round into the ground to convince him to leave, according to police. Zgela then ran into a nearby cemetery, removed a .38-caliber revolver from a backpack, and fired multiple shots toward Zalar’s property before fleeing into the woods.

State police followed Zgela’s footprints in fresh fallen snow from the cemetery to the Family Dollar store in Point Marion. They found Zgela inside the store and when police attempted to place him in handcuffs, he tried to retrieve the revolver from the waistband of his pants. Zgela was then forcibly placed in handcuffs and the revolver taken from him by police.

Officers found approximately $40 worth of candy and a syringe inside Zgela’s clothing.

Tara Kinsell started her career in journalism with the National Geographic Insider Magazine and the Gaithersburg Gazette Newspaper in Montgomery County, Md. Tara has written and photographed sports, features and news stories for the Herald Standard, Greene County Messenger and Albert Gallatin Weekly. She holds degrees in journalism and graphic design from Waynesburg College, now Waynesburg University, and the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, respectively.

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