FALLON - A group of sailors eating lunch at a restaurant here were instrumental in the arrest of a man suspected of knocking down an elderly Fallon woman and stealing her $1,000 bank deposit on Tuesday.
The seven men, who are attached to Navy Squadron VS32 in Jacksonville, Fla., and training at Fallon, heard the 81-year-old victim call for help.
"All of a sudden we heard this old lady yelling, 'help, help, call the police,'" Navy man Nupole Dunbar said. He said he was outside the restaurant when the robbery occurred.
Dunbar and his buddies chased the suspect, later identified as Richard Mastyk, until he ran into the rear of a house. The sailors notified police about the suspect's location.
"When he ran in the shed, I turned around because I did not know if he had a pistol on him," Dunbar said.
Sailor Chris Farrill said the incident happened in the alley behind Colonial Bank in Fallon.
"She was behind the bank in the alley and he pushed her from behind," Dunbar said. Fallon police officers and Churchill County Sheriff's deputies surrounded the house at gunpoint.
After about 20 minutes, Mastyk was brought out in handcuffs. As he was being led to a police car, the elderly victim shouted, "Why did you do that to me?" The suspect responded that he hadn't done anything.
He was identified by the sailors and the victim. She declined to talk about the ordeal and was visibly shaken as she tried to contact her husband by cell phone.
Fallon Assistant Police Chief Ray Dolan said the money, which was in two white business envelopes, was recovered near Mastyk, who was found hiding behind furniture in the rear of the residence.
A woman who had fled the home in a light blue bathrobe when police converged on the area began crying as Mastyk was led away. She told police he is her husband.
In addition to Dunbar and Farrill, sailors Kenneco Surgeon, Scott Maney, Dennis Hill, John McDuffie and Derrick Andrews participated in the pursuit.
Dolan said Mastyk will be charged with strong arm robbery. He praised the sailors who helped solve the crime.
"That was fantastic. They did an outstanding job," he said.