Tarentum man accused in jintey robbery deemed ‘danger to society’ |
Valley News Dispatch

Tarentum man accused in jintey robbery deemed ‘danger to society’

Madasyn Czebiniak
Allegheny County Jail
Vern Alexander Connor Jr.

A Tarentum man accused of robbing and threatening to shoot a jitney driver over the weekend remained in the Allegheny County Jail without bond Tuesday.

A judge deemed him a danger to society, according to court records.

Vern Alexander Connor Jr., 36, was arraigned early Tuesday by District Judge Regis Charles Welsh on felony charges including aggravated assault and robbery.

Tarentum police received a report of a robbery in the 300 block of West 8th Avenue about 9 p.m.

Police said a woman told them she had been robbed in the 200 block of Conroy Way. The woman said a man fired a shot inside of her SUV, then put the gun to her head and said that the next one was for her, according to a criminal complaint.

The woman told police she picked Connor up at the Family Dollar about 8:20 p.m., and drove him and another man, known as Aaron West, to an unknown address around Buffalo Bills Roadhouse in New Kensington.

West got out of the SUV and said he would come back, but he never did, the woman told police. She said she and Connor waited for 20 minutes before driving to the 200 block of Conroy Way in Tarentum.

According to the complaint, Connor began to get irate, and demanded the woman drive back to where they had dropped West off. The two returned to that spot, waited 20 minutes, then the woman drove to a gas station and got an iced tea. She then drove Connor back to Conroy Way.

Once the woman and Connor got to the 200 block of Conroy Way, Connor pulled out a gun and put it to her head. He fired a round into the left rear door, put the gun back to the woman’s head and said, “Your going to die tonight,” the complaint said. He also took the woman’s keys, phone and wallet, the complaint stated.

Connor returned the woman’s keys and told her to circle the block a few times before she was instructed to pull over, according to the complaint. The woman asked if she could use the bathroom. When Connor gave her permission, she she ran.

Tarentum police found the SUV on Conroy Way and were able to confirm that there was a spent shell casing inside, the complaint said.

The woman later identified Connor through a photo lineup.

Connor is set to appear for a preliminary hearing before Brackenridge District Judge Carolyn Bengel on Feb. 6.

He is charged with Aggravated assault, robbery, illegal possession of firearm, terroristic threats, unlawful restraint, reckless endangerment, criminal mischief, theft and receiving stolen property.

Madasyn Czebiniak is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Madasyn at 724-226-4702, [email protected], or via Twitter @maddyczebstrib.