Lehigh Valley

Police charge pair in connection with two more armed robberies

Authorities say suspect admitted to five stickups

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Authorities in Northampton County have formally charged two suspects in connection with the third in a series of armed robberies they allegedly pulled within days.

Bethlehem police charged Ezekial L. Dingle and Alan H. Oren Jr. with robbery and conspiracy for the alleged gunpoint holdup of a Linden Street gas station on April 30. District Judge James Narlesky arraigned the pair Wednesday afternoon. Authorities have charged the 17-year-old Oren as an adult.

Dingle and Oren, who are already in Northampton County Prison, were also scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday by District Judge Alicia Rose Zito in connection with a convenience store robbery in Upper Mount Bethel Township. They were identified as suspects following their arrest for allegedly robbing a Wilson Borough CVS.

Bethlehem police responded to an armed robbery report at the Sunoco, 2690 Linden St., shortly after 11:30 p.m. on April 30. An employee told authorities that the robber flashed a silver handgun in his waistband and demanded cash and smokes, according to court records.

Police said he made off with between $200 and $300 and two cartons of Marlboro menthols. The gunman fled in an SUV driven by someone else.

Store surveillance footage showed the robber wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt, a light-colored baseball cap, blue jeans and a red bandana covering his face, according to court records.

Investigators said a Penn Jersey Mart in Wind Gap and a 7-Eleven in Upper Nazareth Township were robbed at gunpoint earlier the same night as the Sunoco stickup. The suspect description in those robberies matched the gunman from the Wind Gap and Lower Nazareth Township robberies, according to authorities.

Bethlehem police said the Slate Belt Regional Police Department later released surveillance photos of the Penn Jersey Mart robber, which exactly matched the Sunoco robber.

On May 2, Easton police arrested Oren and Dingle in connection with the early-morning robbery of a Wilson Borough CVS. Investigators allege Dingle made off with more than $750 and a pack of chewing gum before being arrested with Oren about 30 minutes after the robbery.

During an interview with police, Dingle allegedly admitted to committing five robberies in total, including the Sunoco holdup. Oren also allegedly admitted his role as the get-away driver.

Bethlehem police charged Dingle with felony counts of robbery, conspiracy and carrying a firearm without a license, along with misdemeanor counts of theft, receiving stolen property and corruption of minors. The judge set bail at $50,000, but the 21-year-old was already in county jail after failing to post $175,000 bail in connection to the alleged CVS robbery.

Oren faces a single count of robbery and two conspiracy charges in connection with the Sunoco holdup. His bail was also set at $50,000.

Pennsylvania State Police have charged Oren and Dingle in connection with the May 1 robbery of a Penn Jersey Mart in Upper Mount Bethel Township. They allege Christopher Rauh accompanied Dingle in the robbery.

It does not appear that charges have been filed againt Oren and Dingle for the Wind Gap and  Upper Nazareth Township robberies.

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