Police: Westmoreland Co. Robbery Turns Into Shooting After 3 People Try To Buy THC Wax With Counterfeit Money

Police: Westmoreland Co. Robbery Turns Into Shooting After 3 People Try To Buy THC Wax With Counterfeit Money

DERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. (KDKA) – State Police say a robbery spun out of control into a shooting in Derry Township.


Gunfire rang out along the 300 block of McFarland Avenue late Sunday after state police say 28-year-old Michael Sawyer, 22-year-old Lorraine Painter and 17-year-old Brandon “Lil Drizzy” Thomas’ alleged criminal conspiracy went bad.


“We had a group of individuals who set up a drug transaction through Snapchat,” said Trooper Steve Limani.


Investigators say the trio showed up at a home with the plan buy some THC wax off of the victim.


Brandon Thomas of Scottdale had the cash in hand, but Trooper Limani says “it was very apparent this money was fake.”


But things got out of control quickly. The victim was arguing with Thomas over the alleged counterfeit money he’d been given. According to police, that’s when Sawyer got out of his car and opened fire. The victim was hit in the groin.


Sawyer, Painter and Thomas took the THC and drove away, but police say they were able to get a partial plate. That clue led to Sawyer and Painter’s arrest.


Michael Sawyer, the alleged trigger man, faces attempted homicide charges. Lorraine Painter is charged with robbery. Brandon “Lil-Drizzy” Thomas remains on the run tonight.