Before bank robbery, two men burglarized Salem Twp. house

By Ed Lewis - [email protected]
Pambianco -
Spaide -
Spaide and Pambianco -

NANTICOKE — Two men charged with a daring bank robbery followed by a pursuit that ended with a police induced crash allegedly ransacked a house in Salem Township.

Township police allege Gerald Pambianco, 29, and Derek Spaide, 26, kicked in the front door of a house on Confers Lane and stole televisions, video game systems, electronics, coin collections, personal identification cards and a safe sometime after 7 a.m. Wednesday.

Not satisfied with getting any cash from the house, the two men allegedly planned to rob a branch of Luzerne Bank on state Route 315 in Plains Township.

Authorities say the two men also admitted to burglarizing a second house prior to the bank robbery but have not yet been charged.

After a high speed pursuit that ended with their arrest, authorities say they recovered items stolen from the Salem Township house inside their wrecked vehicle.

Salem Township police said Pambianco and Spaide admitted to burglarizing the Confers Lane, each describing their separate jobs.

Pambianco allegedly told authorities they were driving around looking for “doors to boot”and selected the house on Confers Lane when they realized no one was home.

Once inside, Pambianco said his job was to gather televisions and Spaide claimed his job was to ransack bedrooms looking for jewelry and other valuables, court papers say.

Salem Township police were notified of the burglary when the homeowners arrived home at about 4 p.m. Police said the front door was kicked multiple times with the dead bolt lock still in the locked position.

Hours after ransacking the house, they drove to a parking lot on Route 315 and planned to rob Luzerne Bank.

Authorities allege Pambianco decided to be the get-away driver and covered the license plate on his vehicle and Spaide was to enter the bank with a rifle.

Pambianco and Spaide allegedly switched their shoes as Spaide was concerned his white and black sneakers could be identified.

Authorities said Spaide concealed his face with a bandanna, entered the bank and aimed a rifle at a bank teller. He fled the bank and sped away with Pambianco at the wheel, court papers say.

A Pittston Township police officer spotted the vehicle on Interstate 81 that led to the pursuit.

During the pursuit, Spaide allegedly grabbed half of the cash and put it in a bag for Pambianco in anticipation of running away on foot once the vehicle stopped.

Plains Township police forced the crash on Route 309.

Spaide jumped out of the vehicle and attempted to enter another vehicle police said was occupied by a woman and a child. He was apprehended after he was stunned by police with a Taser.

Pambianco was arrested at the wrecked car.

A Plains Township police officer suffered a neck injury, authorities said.

Pambianco, of Crow Street, Plains Township, and Spaide, of South Main Street, Hanover Township, were arraigned Thursday by District Judge Donald Whittaker in Nanticoke on charges of burglary, criminal trespass, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief, which were filed by Salem Township police.

Plains Township police charged the duo with criminal conspiracy, aggravated assault, persons not to possess a firearm and receiving stolen property. Spaide was further charged with robbery.

Pambianco and Spaide remain jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $350,000 total bail each.



Spaide and Pambianco and Pambianco

By Ed Lewis

[email protected]