WARREN - The Alliance man accused of stealing $45,000 from someone who hired him to remodel his basement in West Virginia, then ran from police for five months before being caught after a four-hour manhunt throughout Trumbull County, was ordered held in the Trumbull County Jail on a full $300,000 bond.
Warren Municipal Court Judge Terry F. Ivanchak entered not guilty pleas on behalf of Charles S. Hill, 36, 11195 Beech St., on five felony charges that could land him in prison for up to 66 1/2 years. A preliminary hearing is set for April 5.
Hill faces two counts of first-degree felony assault against a police officer, third-degree felony failing to comply with the order of a police officer, third-degree felony abduction and fourth-degree felony receiving stolen property.
Tribune Chronicle / Adam Ferrise
Charles Hill, 36, of Alliance — seen on screen during a video arraignment Wednesday in Warren Municipal Court — was ordered held in lieu of $300,000 bond. He was arrested Monday after a four-hour manhunt.
Authorities say Hill tried to run over two members of the U.S. Marshals Service Violent Fugitive Task Force agents, Youngstown police officer Greg Mullennex and Girard officer Greg Manente, at the Giant Eagle in the Warren Road Plaza about 10:15 a.m. Monday. Both officers shot at Hill as he drove away.
Police say he fled to the Walmart in Bazetta in a 2010 Ford SUV reported stolen from Texas and took his girlfriend, identified as Kari Carter, into the woods against her will. Two gunshots were heard, and Carter was released unharmed, police said.
Investigators said Hill found a ride to a Belmont Avenue Motel 6 in Liberty. Authorities are investigating to see if additional charges will be filed against anyone who helped Hill eluded officers.
The regionwide manhunt lasted four hours and Hill was arrested at the Motel 6 without incident, police said.
Both Youngstown and Girard police said they are conducting standard internal affairs investigations on Mullennex and Manente that are mandated after officers fire gunshots. Manente said he expected to be back by the end of the week.
Hill was running from U.S. Marshals and law enforcement since Oct. 2, when authorities in Weirton, W.Va., say Hill stole $45,000 in cash from John and Phyllis Bohrer, who had hired him and another man to remodel their basement.
Hill admitted to police and Hancock County, W.Va., sheriff's officials that he stole $5,000 from a concealed pipe in the Bohrer basement. He said he would take police to the cash, but instead escaped, investigators said.
Officers reported finding a slew of new tools, appliances, computers, expensive jewelry and thousands of dollars worth of other items in Hill's apartment. The apartment had been bare weeks earlier, a witness told officers. More items were discovered in an outdoor shed, police said.
During the subsequent investigation, deputies found that Hill had purchased two used vehicles, a 2001 Chevrolet and a 1997 Dodge truck for $4,850, and registered the vehicle under his cousin's name, according to investigators. He also bought a diamond-plate tool box for his truck bed, and other chrome truck accessories, the report states.