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Witnesses chase down assailant

November 04, 2005|by DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Chambersburg police said several citizens intervened in a strong-arm robbery Wednesday afternoon near the Giant food store, with one catching the alleged robber.

The victim, a 76-year-old Chambersburg woman, was walking on the sidewalk along the 900 block of Stouffer Avenue at 12:54 p.m. when "for all intents and purposes, the suspect tackled her and took her purse," said Detective Sgt. Dianne Kelso.

Witnesses to the incident went to the aid of the woman while another chased down and caught the suspect "and kept him there until police officers arrived," Kelso said.

The unidentified suspect is a 17-year-old male from Chambersburg, Kelso said. He was charged with first-degree felony counts of robbery, aggravated assault and intimidation of a witness or victim, as well as misdemeanor charges of simple assault and recklessly endangering another person, she said.

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The intimidation charge resulted from the suspect's "interaction with the individual that caught him," Kelso said.

Whether the teenager is prosecuted as an adult or juvenile is a decision that rests with he Franklin County District Attorney's Office, Kelso said.

The woman, whose name Kelso did not release, was taken to Chambersburg Hospital. The woman's injuries were not life-threatening,Kelso said.

"In this particular instance, the community coming to the aid of this person is commendable and is applauded," Kelso said. "The police cannot function without the public acting as its eyes and ears."

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