Posted: January 29
Updated: Today at 12:40 AM

State inmate at MinSec caught after bank robbery in Pike County

State Police said James Edward Heller called West Hazleton barracks claiming he was going to harm himself.

By Edward Lewis elewis@timesleader.com
Staff Writer

WEST HAZLETON – A state inmate staying at MinSec, a controversial halfway residential parole center in Hazleton, was apprehended after he robbed a bank in Pike County and a pursuit in southern Luzerne County on Thursday, according to state police at Hazleton.

State police said James Edward Heller, 30, called the state police barracks in West Hazleton claiming he was going to harm himself and others during the pursuit that began on Interstate 80.

When Heller stopped at a traffic signal, he told the trooper on the phone if a trooper approached his vehicle, he was going to “use my gun,” according to charges filed.

Heller was apprehended when troopers rammed his vehicle after it became disabled on state Route 924 near Hazleton.

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