Erie police: Man stabs self in struggle to steal truck – News –


Two are accused in the attempted robbery on the city’s east side early Friday.

Erie police charge that two men attempted to steal an older pickup truck on the city’s west side early Friday morning when the truck’s owner confronted them and a fight broke out.

One of the men wound up going to the hospital after he stabbed himself during the struggle with a knife he pulled on the truck’s owner, Erie Police Chief Dan Spizarny said.

Jeffrey W. Young, 32, of Olean, New York, is accused of attempting to steal the 1997 Dodge Ram pickup truck in the area of West 19th and Cherry streets on Friday at about 1:30 a.m., and of pulling a knife on the truck owner before stabbing himself in the struggle, according to Spizarny and information in Young’s criminal complaint.

Craig A. Fitch Jr., 39, of Erie, is accused of acting as a lookout while Young tried to steal the truck, and of attempting to assault the truck’s owner after the owner fended off Young, according to information in his complaint.

According to Spizarny, the suspects were attempting to steal the truck when the vehicle’s owner came outside and confronted one of the suspects, identified as Young, who pulled out a knife and threatened the owner. The two began fighting and during the struggle Young stabbed himself in the shoulder, Spizarny said.

He said the suspects ran off and went to the area of West 18th and Chestnut streets, where they flagged down a city police officer and said they were jumped and assaulted. Young told officers that he was shot in the arm, and Fitch reported that he and Young were attacked with a firearm, according to information in their complaints.

Spizarny said that while Young was being treated for his injury at the hospital, he told hospital staff that he was trying to steal a vehicle and was assaulted. Young later confessed that his injury was not from a firearm, police wrote in his complaint.

Young and Fitch were arraigned late Friday morning by Erie 3rd Ward District Judge Tom Carney on charges including felony counts of attempted robbery and theft. Young also faces a felony count of aggravated assault and misdemeanor counts of possessing an instrument of crime and false reports, while Fitch additionally faces misdemeanor counts of false reports and simple assault.

Both were placed in the Erie County Prison on $50,000 bond following their arraignments.

Contact Tim Hahn at Follow him on Twitter @ETNhahn.

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