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Two caught in YSU parking deck robbery

Published: Thu, October 24, 2013 @ 12:09 a.m.

By Joe Gorman

and Denise Dick



Two juveniles are in custody after the robbery of a Youngstown State University student in a parking deck on Lincoln Avenue, but a university spokesman says the campus is safe.

“This is disconcerting,” said Ron Cole, YSU spokesman. “It’s very concerning. It’s something that everyone all the way up through the president’s office is aware of and are adamant in addressing. I would say, though, that within about a 12-hour period, the individuals had been apprehended due in large part to our police department.”

University authorities will aggressively pursue, apprehend, arrest, charge and prosecute to the fullest extent possible anyone who comes onto campus to commit such a crime, Cole said.

YSU Police Chief John Beshara said one of the keys to tracking down the two teens so soon was because of the good descriptions given by the female victim.

Beshara said one of the suspects was arrested shortly after the 5 p.m. robbery in the Smoky Hollow section of the North Side behind campus. The other suspect was arrested Wednesday morning with help from the Mahoning County juvenile justice probation department, Beshara said.

Beshara would not provide the names or ages of the teens involved because he said they had not yet been formally charged. They are both being held at the Martin P. Joyce Juvenile Justice Center.

The victim said she was in the parking deck when two males, one of them pointing what looked like a gun at her, demanded her property. She complied immediately and they fled. She in turn went straight to the campus police station and gave a description, which was radioed to university police and Youngstown police. A short time later, a university officer on patrol spotted two males in the Smoky Hollow section who appeared to fit the description.

Both males ran, and one of them threw away what looked like a gun, Beshara said. One of them was caught after a short foot chase, but the other managed to elude police, who brought in a police dog to track him, until he was arrested Wednesday morning.

Beshara said officers found an air gun that one of the males had thrown to the ground, and that it looks like a real gun.

Armed robberies on campus are a rarity, and although the one that occurred Tuesday was the first this school year, it’s not the first that’s ever occurred on campus, Cole said.

Police don’t believe the most recent crime is connected with the string of robberies that occurred on the outskirts of campus earlier this year, he said.

Campus police conduct regular foot patrols as well as bicycle patrols and car patrols on the outskirts of campus. There are security cameras, but he declined to say where, calling it a law-enforcement issue.

“As at any time, being we are an urban university campus, students need to be aware of their surroundings whether they be on campus or off campus,” the spokesman said. “Traditionally we’ve always had a very low crime rate. We’re considered to be one of the safest campuses in the state — and we are. At the same time, we’re in the middle of an urban area, and that requires students to be aware of what’s going on around them. I don’t think that’s any different than it is everywhere.”


1ElPolloRetrasado(207 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

How about some cameras in the parking deck?! I'm guaranteeing that they could use some of the thousands of dollars that I paid in tuition to put a few in! Good job campus police, probably should have shot the POS's and saved everyone the hassle and money that these two will cost the taxpayers throughout their crime ridden future!

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2keugene(22 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

this is a bigger issue.....i hate to cast aspertions at people . but i drop my daughter off on campus by the intersections of Elm and Lincoln and i never have seen a ysu or city police car cruising in that area.........also the students at ysu should take this a step further.....demand from politicians gun control.....these were armed juveniles......they can.t get cigarettes and/or alcohol w/o an i.d. but they all carry weapons......were and how do they get them and were do they come from....

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3redvert(2185 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

Back off people, these two nice young men were just trying to steal enough stuff they could sell and buy a real gun (FYI, the gun purchase would not be from a gun store). Once they had a real gun they could step up to the big time. They are just trying to better themselves, we are coming into the holiday season, give them a break.

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4michael1757(400 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

These judges are going to have to start coming down harder on these juvies.They know the law can't do much to them.Give em' a week stay in the detention center,which probably has better living conditions than they have at home,so they keep doing these small arm robberies.They are however,heading toward a life behind bars.

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5DwightK(1399 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

The juveniles committing these crimes don't go to school, don't work and their parents aren't keeping track of them. They see YSU and its students as soft targets so they mug them.

The university should treat this as a wake up call and start addressing the safety of campus.

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6daisy1(4 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

There have been other incidents on campus of individuals who are not students stealing from offices. I haven't seen these incidents reported by YSU. The campus is very open and appealing to these thugs. We need to be informed to be more proactive .

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7sameolhub(56 comments)posted 1 year, 11 months ago

@keugene gun control, yeah right moron, take away all the guns, and you know dirt bags like these 2 won't have any either. How freaking stupid can you libtards be?

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