Wounded Officer Recovering,
Search for Suspect Continues

December 21, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

McKeesport police Officer Jerry Athans, 32, prepares to return fire Sunday after being shot three times by a suspect identified as Koby Lee Francis, 22. Francis is charged by Allegheny County police with attempted homicide. (Submitted photo via Allegheny County police)

Holiday decorations in Kennedy Park on Lysle Boulevard spell out the words, “PEACE ON EARTH.”

The scene captured by surveillance cameras on Sunday afternoon along Fourth Avenue — just behind those words — is anything but peaceful.

Footage released by Allegheny County police on Monday shows a suspect identified as Koby Lee Francis, 22, of McKeesport, firing several shots at city police Officer Gerasimos “Jerry” Athans, 32, from the back seat of a McKeesport police cruiser.

Athans takes cover at the front of the car, turns, aims and returns fire as Francis — still handcuffed from his arrest a few minutes earlier — flees on foot. The entire sequence plays out in about 20 seconds.

“We strongly urge members of the community who can see that this was an egregious violation to cooperate with our investigation and provide us with his whereabouts,” said county police Superintendent Coleman McDonough at a press conference Monday.

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City Police Officer Shot, Suspect at Large

December 20, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Koby Lee Francis, 22, is wanted by Allegheny County police in connection with the shooting of a McKeesport police officer on Sunday outside the Public Safety Building. (Courtesy Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office)

A suspect who was arrested Sunday afternoon for violating a protection-from-abuse order shot a McKeesport police officer outside of the Public Safety Building, sparking a massive lockdown and search.

The 32-year-old officer, whose name has not been officially released, was in critical but stable condition at UPMC Presbyterian hospital, Oakland, Sunday night.

The suspect, identified by police as Koby Lee Francis, 22, of the city is wanted by Allegheny County police on charges of attempted homicide, aggravated assault, escape, flight to avoid apprehension, and violating the uniform firearms act.

The incident happened just after 4 p.m. outside the Fourth Avenue entrance to the police station. A dragnet fell over the Downtown area and Third Ward following the shooting, as police from multiple jurisdictions — including local, county and state agencies and federal agents — cordoned off a large section of the city.

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City Police Officer Shot, Manhunt Underway

December 20, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Please see the updated story.


NV Twp. Man Killed By Snow Plow

December 17, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News, North Versailles Twp. News

A North Versailles Twp. man was killed when he was struck by a snow plow near his home in the Arlington section of the township, Allegheny County police said.

John A. Vichie, 63, was pronounced dead at the scene, the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s office said.

County police said that Vichie was walking with a snow blower in the 100 block of Union Avenue when he was struck by a township public works truck that was backing up the street.

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Police Log: Dec. 7, 2020

December 07, 2020 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

• Arrest records published here were provided by the McKeesport Police Department.
• Not all arrest records are published.
• An arrest does not mean the person identified has been convicted of a crime.
• All people arrested are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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City Police Fund Drive Underway

December 06, 2020 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, Crime and Police News

The McKeesport police annual fund drive is underway.

A spokesman said the donations are used to purchase non-budgeted items and equipment used by officers while serving McKeesport and Dravosburg, which is patrolled by city police under a contract with the borough.

Donations are strictly voluntary, a spokesman said.

“The items purchased from these donations are used on a daily basis by our police department,” he said. “Several of these items would not have been purchased if it were not for the generosity of the local businesses and private citizens of both McKeesport and Dravosburg.”

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Mother, Kids Escape After Teen Shoots Car

November 20, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A McKeesport woman and her two children escaped serious injury after a teen-ager shot at their car on Market Street, city police said.

The suspect, Michael Singleton, 18, of McKeesport, thought he was shooting at one of his rivals, according to a police report.

Singleton is suspected of being in a street gang, police said. He is being held in the Allegheny County Jail without bond pending formal arraignment Jan. 8 in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court.

According to a report, the victim stopped for a stop sign at the intersection of Market Street and 13th Avenue at 12:30 p.m. Oct. 25 when she heard gun shots, and the back window of her car shattered.

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Man Jailed Following Dravosburg Shooting

November 20, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A McKees Rocks man is being held in the Allegheny County Jail after McKeesport police said he fired a shot into the floor of his girlfriend’s Dravosburg apartment and threatened to kill her.

Cody W. Pehm, 25, is charged with recklessly endangering another person, terroristic threats, discharging a firearm into an occupied structure, simple assault and possession of a controlled substance following the incident Monday night.

Magisterial District Judge James A. Motznik ordered Pehm held without bond pending a preliminary hearing Dec. 3 before Magisterial District Judge Richard D. Olasz Jr.

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Local Second-Grader Surprises City Police

October 25, 2020 |

By Vickie Babyak | Posted in: Crime and Police News, McKeesport and Region News

Devin Brown, 7, of McKeesport is introduced to K9 Officer Ryco by his handler, police Sgt. Fran Angert, as his mom, Heather Nelson, looks on. (Vickie Babyak photo for Tube City Almanac)

A second-grader at Propel McKeesport surprised city police on Saturday morning with 47 custom-ordered face masks.

Devin Brown, 7, of McKeesport, has admired police officers since an incident at a Greensburg diner, said his mother, Heather Nelson.

A Pennsylvania state trooper stopped in to eat lunch and gave Devin a “junior trooper” sticker badge. “Ever since then, he’s wanted to be a policeman when he grows up,” Nelson said. Devin has plastic handcuffs and plays with his pretend police toys all the time, she said.

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Texas Man Jailed Following Chase, Crash

October 21, 2020 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A Texas man remains in Allegheny County Jail on charges that he led officers on a chase through McKeesport, then bailed out of his vehicle following a crash in Dravosburg.

City police used an aerial drone and a tracking dog to help locate Kendall L. Mikell, 33, of Fort Worth, who remains jailed in lieu of $100,000 bond pending a preliminary hearing Nov. 23 before Magisterial District Judge Eugene Riazzi.

City and Allegheny County police were working a crime suppression detail on Walnut Street, Downtown, on the evening of Sept. 18 when a black Toyota sedan with Texas license plates turned onto Shaw Avenue, traveling at a high rate of speed.

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