Man arraigned in hospital in connection with gun shop owner's death



TUNNELTON, Pa. - A man was arraigned in the hospital Friday in connection with the New Year’s Eve shooting death inside an Indiana County gun shop.

Under heavy police guard at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, Jack Edmundson was charged at his hospital bed.

“The medical staff felt he was competent and capable of understanding what was going on at the proceeding, so that’s why court felt today was appropriate,” said Indiana County District Attorney Patrick Dougherty.

Edmundson is charged in the death of Frank Petro at Petro’s gun shop in Tunnelton.

Police said Edmundson shot Petro several times and tried to burn down the store to conceal the crime.

Edmundson was shot in the leg during the struggle, police said.

Police said the incident began over an apparent illegal lottery scheme. Edmundson posed as a state police informant and tried to extort money from Petro to make the case go away, police said.

Edmundson is charged with homicide, aggravated assault, arson and robbery.

He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing next week but that could change depending on whether or not he’s released from hospital.

Edmundson is well known in the Saltsburg area.  He once worked as a paramedic and volunteer firefighter.