Two Berlin brothers who pursued and apprehended an alleged mugger on Monday are being lauded by the community, law enforcement officials and – strangely enough – the suspected robber himself.
“It’s OK. Ya’ done what ya’ had to do,” said 30-year-old Joshua Dean Foy while the two had him pinned on the ground, awaiting police. “I would have done the same.”
Nineteen-year-old Dakota and 23-year-old Cody Glessner, two Berlin Brothersvalley graduates, said they were in their home when they heard a woman scream for help.
Although Cody had two broken fingers and Dakota was recovering from a cold, the two gave chase. After a scuffle, the Glessners handed the alleged robber over to Berlin Borough police.
“(Cody) said, ‘If you just drop the money, you’ll be fine – I won’t hurt you,” Dakota recalled.
According to Sgt. Chad Salley, Foy, of Orchard Street in Berlin, had been casing Harber’s Riverside Market to learn when employees made deposits at First National Bank on Main Street.
On Monday afternoon, it was 53-year-old office manager Lori Shaw who delivered the money. In a statement Foy made to police, he said he had been wearing a mask and hiding behind a dumpster for close to 15 minutes, waiting for an employee to head to the bank.
He told police he had chugged six beers prior to the robbery and was slightly intoxicated.
Foy told police he felt nervous as many passers-by made eye contact with him but neither said nor did anything – something Salley said he’s disappointed about, as it could have given the police an opportunity to apprehend Foy.
Just as Foy was about to give up and leave, Shaw approached the bank with her deposit bag, and Foy reportedly stopped her at the door.
Police said Foy tussled with her and claims to have simply ripped the bag from her, although authorities say her injuries suggest otherwise.
Witnesses and others in homes nearby said they heard Shaw scream for help. Several 911 calls were made.
The Glessners heard Shaw’s cry from their home and leapt into action, chasing Foy barefoot across two blocks, through parking lots and front yards. They finally caught up with him in the 600 Block of South Street - the front lawn of Michele Nakich, a retired Berlin Brothersvalley teacher.
A brawl ensued.
Nakich said she called 911 at the behest of her husband, then came outside.
“There was this melee going on,” she said. “I didn’t know who the good guys or the bad guys were.”
Dakota Glessner said they beseeched bystanders for help but to no avail.
“It was crazy – no one would even help us. There were 10 people around us, just staring,” he said.
Once the fighting subsided and the Glessners had Foy pinned, Nakich recognized them as former students and “nice boys.”
She said she noticed the two were very nervous and Cody Glessner kept apologizing to Foy for injuring him.
Police had been dispatched at around 3:30 p.m. to the attempted mugging at First National Bank, then immediately to the South Street fisticuffs, where Somerset 911 advised that the Glessners had Foy detained.
“Not very many people do that,” said Salley, adding that it was fortunate the two young men were nearby. “We may not have caught him if it weren’t for them.”
The Glessners collected and returned the deposit bag to a startled and gracious bank manager.
After the incident, during which Shaw was pushed to the ground, she was admitted to Somerset Hospital. She underwent surgery on Tuesday for a fractured hip.
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