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Armed Robbery and Assault in Shenandoah

SHENANDOAH — A man from Shenandoah was charged with robbery and aggravated assault after police said he held a woman hostage and hit a man in the face with a handgun in Schuylkill County.

Shenandoah police said Joseph Kakol robbed the Turkey Hill on Main Street early Tuesday morning.

According to court papers, Kakol made off with $620. 46.

“When you actually pull a gun and take somebody hostage, basically then you’re asking for trouble. I hope he gets whatever he deserves,” said Jerry Grochowsky from Shenandoah.

Police said before Kakol got the money, he first dragged a female witness into the store by the hair.

He then held a gun to her head and threatened to kill her if the Turkey Hill clerk didn’t give him money.

Court papers stated that when the clerk hesitated, Kakol smacked the man in the face with a handgun.

Police found Kakol a few hours later and he’s being held at Schuylkill County Prison on $250,000 bail.

“It’s a scary prospect to walk into a Turkey Hill and walk in on something like that, an armed robbery going on,” said Grochowsky.

People in the Schuylkill County community said that even though robberies like the one at Turkey Hill on Main Street are scary, it doesn’t shock them anymore. Actually, some people expect it to happen.

“You see drugs, crack pipes, guns, drug deals on a daily basis at that,” said David Rector.

Rector said incidents like the Turkey Hill robbery make him want to move out of Shenandoah.

“It worries me. I’m leaving due to that fact that the area did get so bad. The town used to be good a few years back, but lately it’s gotten to the point where it’s completely out of control,” said Rector.

Mike Monahan has lived in Schuylkill County all his life, but said it’s sad you can’t even feel safe at a gas station anymore.

“I was waiting for that to happen. You hear about it in Hazleton, Wilkes-Barre, and Scranton. It’s going to start here. Next you’re going to see shootings.”

Kakol is scheduled to be in court on September 4 at 10 a.m.

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