Multiple warrants are out for the arrest of a local man accused of stealing thousands of dollars worth of merchandise from stores around the area. Police say they’re looking for John Gehlert. He has a new warrant from the University of Pittsburgh Police for theft in addition to felony warrants in Bellevue and Frazer Township.
Police say Gehlert and his girlfriend, Jamie Michalski, are accused of stealing $13,000 worth of merchandise from the Tarentum Walmart. Police say they’re on surveillance video stealing 16 times.
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“Oh, it’s a total crime,” Nick Paradise of Frazer Township tells Channel 11. “It’s atrocious. I hope they catch these people. Get them off the streets.”
Some customers told us that with fewer employees, less security and more self-checkouts, it’s a recipe for theft.
“It might be the self-checkout,” Paradise added. “Right now we’re scanning our own good — nobody else is working.”
“Maybe it’s the easy access to Route 28,” Bill Graham of Frazer Township added. “That’s probably the main reason.”
Police say the pair ride PRT buses for a quick getaway on which they can hide in plain sight.
The pair were also charged with stealing from the Dollar General in Bellevue. Gehlert’s girlfriend was caught and arrested, then released and given a court summons. Police say she reoffended and after a nearly year-old warrant, she was booked last week.
Gehlert wasn’t caught and never showed up to court. Police say he reoffended again less than three weeks ago despite warrants being out for his arrest dating back more than a year. There are also multiple bench warrants for Gehlert for failing to appear in court.
“Turn them in for their own good — for the community,” Graham added.
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