BLAIRSVILLE — Police today continued a manhunt for a suspect in a string of crimes Friday through southwestern Indiana County, and a judge issued a warrant for the man’s arrest on 31 charges.
Investigators charged David Dilts Jr., 36, of Penn Run, in connection with the chain of events that they believe began with the theft of a pickup truck, continued with the theft of a rifle and, at last report, included a confrontation with a man who took the gun from Dilts.
State police at Indiana have accused Dilts of five counts of burglary and two counts of robbery, all first-degree felonies, all punishable by lengthy terms in prison.
Troopers pieced together what they call Dilts’ crime spree through the area:
• Early Friday on Main Street, Conemaugh Township, where he broke into a house, stole the keys to a 2016 Nissan Frontier and drove it away while the owners were not at home.
• 3:16 p.m. Friday along Short Lane, Young Township, where a woman told police she came home to find a black Nissan in her driveway and confronted a man exiting her home with a .22-caliber rifle. Dilts, police said, fought with the woman and fled in the truck with her gun.
• 3:29 p.m. Friday, Iselin Road, Young Township, where residents said a man, believed to be Dilts, drove to the rear of their house, poked the barrel of the rifle through an open window, then fled when a man inside threatened to shoot Dilts with a handgun if he entered the house.
• 5:14 p.m. Friday, Gamble and Germany Lutheran Cemetery roads, West Wheatfield Township, where investigators discovered the stolen truck had been wrecked and abandoned. Police found a black hooded sweatshirt matching the one worn by the suspect described by the victims.
• Some time later, on Roy Boring Road, West Wheatfield Township, where police believe Dilts approached a man walking a dog, pointed the rifle at him and demanded his vehicle. The man threw Dilts to the ground and took the gun from him; Dilts fled on foot and unarmed, according to investigators.
Police asked anyone with information about Dilts to contact the state police station in Indiana at (724) 357-1960.