Man arrested in West Virginia for Butler County charges

April 15, 2019 Cranberry Local News

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A Butler man is behind bars in West Virginia following his arrest Saturday night in connection with several crimes in Butler County a day earlier.

White Hall Police captured Tyler O. Lambing, 20, without incident about 7 p.m. near Fairmont, W.Va., located about 20 miles outside Morgantown. Lambing, a felon, was the subject of a nearly 24-hour manhunt after allegedly eluding police late Friday night at a Walmart store in White Hall.

Authorities say he and a Middlesex Township girl stole her father's car, two guns, ammunition, jewelry and money before heading 125 miles south into the Mountain State.

“We're definitely pleased he was able to be apprehended,” Middlesex Township police Sgt. Randy Davison said early Sunday morning. “He'll be brought back here to face the charges we have on him.”

Those charges include burglary, three counts each of theft and receiving stolen property, conspiracy and felons not to possess firearms — all felonies. He also faces a misdemeanor charge of corruption of minors.

Lambing is being held in North Central Regional Jail in Doddridge County on an arrest warrant Middlesex Township police forwarded to West Virginia authorities. Butler County probation officials also issued a detainer to hold him in the West Virginia jail on a probation violation from Pennsylvania.

Davison said he did not know when Lambing would appear for an extradition hearing. The defendant could choose to waive extradition and agree to return to Butler County.

Local authorities expect White Hall police will file their own charges against Lambing. A spokesman with their department could not be reached for comment over the weekend.

The 17-year-old girl with Lambing was arrested earlier Saturday at her grandmother's Penn Township home after being returned to Pennsylvania in the custody of her father.

Authorities did not identify the girl, but Middlesex Township police officer Conrad Pfeifer said she was taken into custody by West Virginia authorities about 10:15 p.m. in the Walmart parking lot where Lambing was last seen before eluding police. The girl was in her father's stolen 2010 Toyota Camry, according to police. The vehicle was later impounded.

Investigators found one of the stolen guns, an AR-15 rifle, in the car's trunk. White Hall police also recovered the second stolen gun, a 9 mm pistol.

“Our main concern was getting the guns back (off the street),” Middlesex Township police Sgt. Randy Davison said, adding that “White Hall police told us they have both of the guns that were stolen.”

Middlesex Township police charged the girl in Butler County juvenile court with three counts each of theft and receiving stolen property, and conspiracy. Davison said she is being held at an unknown juvenile detention facility.

Davison said Middlesex Township police responded about 4:30 p.m. Friday to the home of the girl's father on Route 8 to investigate a reported burglary and theft.

“(The girl's father) said he returned home and found his bedroom ransacked,” Davison said. “He was missing an AR-15 and a 9 mm handgun. He said ammunition for the guns, and jewelry and money were also taken. His car was gone, too.”

Police soon began searching for the girl in connection with the crime. The teen lives with her father and brother at the Route 8 home, and authorities learned she skipped school Friday.

Investigators initially entered her as a missing person in the National Crime Information Center database, but subsequently suspected she was with Lambing. The two are believed to be friends.

“Through phone conversations with family is how we eventually determined she was at the Walmart in White Hall” Davison said.

Police did not immediately know why the pair drove to West Virginia or what their plans were beyond stopping at the store.

Davison said his department notified White Hall police. According to Davison, the girl was unharmed. She also told investigators she went with Lambing, and that he was in the store.

Police believed Lambing was armed and placed the store on lockdown. The store was searched but he was not found.

A review of surveillance video later showed him leaving Walmart and fleeing.

Near the store, authorities recovered the stolen pistol they suspect Lambing was carrying before discarding it. Additionally, authorities said that a small amount of suspected marijuana was recovered during the investigation in West Virginia.

According to Butler County court records, Lambing was arrested in December 2017 for two crimes that occurred just days apart.

The incidents include a home invasion in Concord Township and a strong-arm robbery in Butler. He eventually pleaded guilty to a felony charge of conspiracy to commit burglary and to misdemeanor assault in the Concord Township case and to misdemeanor charges of theft and assault in the Butler case.

On July 25, 2018, he was sentenced in both cases to a total of 12 months less one day to 24 months less two days in Butler County Prison, followed by 18 months of county probation.

He was given credit for time spent in prison after his arrest and he was released Dec. 17.

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Jim Smith

Jim Smith

Grew up in upstate New York. Earned my Journalism degree in 1983 from the University of Texas at Austin. Worked for two newspapers in Fayette County (Pa.) before starting at the Butler Eagle in 1998.