Saturday, July 12, 2014

Man sentenced for 2012 Pittston home invasion

Matthew Graziano, 34, gets 93 to 186 months in prison

December 05. 2013 11:28PM

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WILKES-BARRE — An Ashley man who robbed an 88-year-old Pittston man at knifepoint in his home last year could spend as much as 15 1/2 years in prison under a sentence handed down Thursday for that and several other crimes.

Matthew Graziano, 34, of 43 Center St., entered Sam Alesso’s home through an unlocked back door on Sept. 13, 2012. He brandished a butcher knife, pointed it toward Alesso and told him that he would kill him if he didn’t give him his money, according to an affidavit filed in the case.

The suspect then turned over Alesso, who was on the couch, and took his wallet, fleeing on foot with about $54, police said.

His description was checked against surveillance camera footage of a local business and police determined that the suspect was inside the business shortly before the robbery took place. The suspect was known to police from recent prior contact as Graziano.

Luzerne County 911 immediately put out Graziano’s description and the Luzerne County Sheriff’s Department spotted him at a South Main Street parking lot, took him into custody and transported him to the Pittston police station.

Luzerne County Judge Tina Polachek Gartley on Thursday sentenced Graziano to serve 93 to 186 months in state prison, with 310 days credit for time served.

The sentence also covers four other cases, including:

• An Aug. 1, 2012, case of retail theft from Kohl’s in Wilkes-Barre Township;

• the Sept. 4, 2012, theft of a purse from a car on William Street in Pittston;

• a Sept. 4, 2012, case of retail theft from CVS Pharmacy on Kennedy Boulevard in Pittston; and

• the Sept. 10, 2012, attempted theft of a purse from someone at Curry Donuts on North Main Street in Pittston.

Graziano also must make more than $1,100 in restitution to various parties and is barred from contact with the victims.

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