Armed robbery suspect caught in Youngstown

By John W. Goodwin Jr.


Police officers from several departments arrested a man they said has spent the last several months terrorizing local businesses.

Officers from Youngstown, Boardman and Austintown arrested Schon Howard, 44, of Campbell, on Friday at a Sycamore Street home on the city’s North Side. He is believed to have committed robberies at four different businesses in those jurisdictions since July.

According to police, officers first went to the home to serve a search warrant, but evidence found at the residence, along with information obtained during the several-month investigation, led officers to arrest Howard.

Howard is believed to have most recently robbed the Speedway Gas Station on North Meridian Road on Youngstown’s West Side on Jan. 11.

The female attendant told police she was working behind the counter when a white Chevrolet Cavalier pulled up near the door and a man with his face covered by a scarf came walking into the store.

The man demanded the cash-register drawer while standing with his hand in his pocket as if he were carrying a gun. The female employee handed over the cash drawer, and the man fled in the white car.

Police noted at the time of the robbery the suspect and his method of operation closely fit a robbery suspect at a nearby BP gas station in Austintown last year.

Police believe Howard also is responsible for an earlier July robbery at the same Speedway gas station on North Meridian. He reportedly threatened the cashier during that robbery.

He is suspected of robbing the BP gas station on East Midlothian Boulevard in Youngstown on Jan. 2, where he is said to have pulled out a gun and demanded money.

Police said Howard also is believed to have robbed the Subway restaurant on Mahoning Avenue, Youngstown, on Jan. 8, where employees said he pulled out a knife and demanded cash from the clerk.

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