Restaurant Owner Listed as Missing

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

OLD FORGE -- A longtime business owner in Old Forge has vanished and police believe he may be in danger.

Their investigation is focused on his family's restaurant that's been in business for decades.

Ghigiarelli's is one of the famous Old Forge pizza restaurants. It would normally be busy on a Friday night, but it's been closed since Thursday. Police say its owner, Robert Baron, was last seen Wednesday night.

There are flowers at the front door of Ghigiarelli's on Main Street in Old Forge and a handwritten sign telling customers that the pizza place is closed for business.

Its owner, Robert Baron, has been missing since Wednesday night. Police say he was last seen dropping his son off at his apartment in the borough.

The investigation seems centered inside the family restaurant. Neighbors say police were there for much of the day Thursday and they were back Friday. Detectives were seen carrying out something that looked like a laptop.

All this has led some to believe Robert Baron may be more than just missing.

"I will say that, in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Police, we did conduct an investigation looking for potential evidence, again, right now, it's a missing persons case," said Lackawanna County District Attorney Shane Scanlon.

Lackawanna County's D.A. and the chief of police in Old Forge showed us the car Baron was known to be driving -- a 2006 Hyundai Elantra.

"What I would like to say is at this point in time, we don't have any evidence of him being dead. We certainly have not found a body or a deceased person. We are asking that if anyone out in the public has any information or has seen Mr. Baron going back to Tuesday to please give the Lackawanna County Communications Center a call," said Scanlon.

Baron's friends and neighbors of the business say a disappearance is out of character for the father of three who left an impression on other Old Forge business owners.

"The best, the best neighbor you want to meet, always good to us," said Linda Tomlinson of Tomlinson Floral and Gift.  "When he moved in, he sent over a couple trays of pizza to greet us, and just so nice. We'd meet him in the back yard and he's just so friendly, nice conversation. We're hoping for the best."

Investigators wouldn't elaborate on any evidence they may have found but told Newswatch 16 given the amount of time he's been gone, they believe Baron may be in danger.

If you have any information about Robert Baron, you are asked to call Old Forge Police at (570) 457-7441, or 911.

The family is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to his whereabouts.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.