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Allegheny County sheriff’s deputy halts mugging attempt, arrests suspect |

Allegheny County sheriff’s deputy halts mugging attempt, arrests suspect

Tony Raap
| Monday, February 23, 2015 1:31 p.m
Deputy Robert Chambers, who foiled a street mugging Monday morning while driving to work.
Shawn Trez Tyson is charged with robbery, assault and related crimes.

An Allegheny County sheriff’s deputy stopped a mugging, aided the victim and subdued and arrested the suspect Monday — all before work.

“Just happened to be in the right place at the right time,” said Deputy Robert Chambers, who has been with the sheriff’s office for 18 years.

Chambers was driving to work when he saw a man getting mugged on a sidewalk in Pittsburgh’s Uptown neighborhood. He pulled over on Fifth Avenue about 7:15 a.m. and got out of his car.

The suspected mugger, Shawn Trez Tyson, 19, ran when Chambers identified himself as a deputy sheriff.

The deputy checked on the victim, a 24-year-old Castle Shannon man, then radioed to summon backup.

He caught Tyson about three blocks away on Colwell Street, but the suspect did not go easily. Tyson was “combative and highly uncooperative” when Chambers arrested him, the sheriff’s office said.

“It feels good to get him off the streets. He won’t be able to do that for a long while,” Chambers said.

The man who was mugged told authorities that he was walking down the street when Tyson began punching him in the head in an attempt to steal his backpack. The victim had swelling and scrapes on his face, the sheriff’s office said. Police did not release his name.

Tyson is a suspect in a mugging earlier Monday on Centre Avenue near Protectory Place in Uptown.

In that case, a man in his 20s said he was walking down the street when he was attacked from behind by a man he identified as Tyson.

The attacker repeatedly punched the man in the head and stole his book bag, the sheriff’s office said.

That victim was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital for treatment of “serious head and facial injuries,” the sheriff’s office said. He was expected to be released from the hospital that day. Police also did not release his name.

Deputies charged Tyson with robbery, assault and related crimes. He was wanted on a warrant related to a burglary in December in the city’s South Side, the sheriff’s office said.

Court records do not list an attorney for Tyson, who was awaiting arraignment.

He has been convicted of harassment and disorderly conduct, according to court records.

Allegheny Chief Deputy Kevin Kraus praised Chambers for foiling the street mugging and said he would be recognized for “his efforts in stopping a violent crime.”

Tony Raap is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7827 or

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