Guilty pleas denied for man accused in 2 New Kensington shootings
A Penn Hills man already serving up to 50 years in prison demanded in court on Friday to plead guilty to shooting two people in New Kensington in 2016.
His cases will go to trial, though, after a Westmoreland County judge refused to accept the plea bargain that would have required Dequane Faulk to serve no additional time behind bars.
Faulk, 26, of Penn Hills initially was set to plead guilty to a count of attempted homicide for an incident in May 2016 in which police said he shot a man three times on Fifth Avenue in New Kensington.
He also wanted to plead guilty to kidnapping and other offenses for a separate incident two weeks later, when he was accused of firing one shot at a woman who said she was carjacked from her own garage.
Assistant District Attorney Pete Flanigan said the plea deals called for Faulk to receive sentences of 15-to-30 years in prison for both cases.
The sentences, through, would run concurrent to the 25-to-50 year prison sentences he is currently serving for killing a man in New Kensington in June 2016 and for assaulting a guard at the Westmoreland County Prison.
In court on Friday, Faulk became unruly during the hearing as he first said he would not plead guilty then changed his mind after being told by Westmoreland County Court Judge Rita Hathaway that she would no longer allow him to do so.
“I’m not going to play these games,” Hathaway said.
Before rejecting the guilty plea, the judge told Faulk she would not sentence him to concurrent prison terms if his case went to trial.
Four sheriff deputies took Faulk from the courtroom as he screamed at the judge.
“They’re scared to send me to state because of Bill Cosby,” Faulk shouted as he left the courtroom.
Last October, Faulk pleaded guilty to a reduced count of third-degree murder for the June 5, 2016, shooting death of Todd Rogers Bell in a New Kensington alley and was sentenced to serve 20-to-40 years in prison. At the same time, he pleaded guilty to aggravated assault in connection to an attack on a guard at the county jail and received a consecutive sentence of 5-to-10 years behind bars.
In the current cases, Faulk was charged with attempted murder for allegedly firing five shots at a man on May 17, 2016. The victim, who was wounded three times, identified Faulk as the shooter from a picture in a photo lineup, police said.
Police said that, on May 31, 2016, Faulk approached a woman in the garage of her New Kensington home and forced her to drive to various locations in the city before stopping and ordering that she put a towel over her head.
The woman told police she feared she was about to be executed and ran from the car when she was shot in the back of her shoulder.
Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293 or [email protected]