Philadelphia man ordered to stand trial in Lancaster city home invasion, assault

Alberto Merced

Alberto Merced

LANCASTER, Pa.–A Philadelphia man will stand trial after he forced his way into an elderly Lancaster man’s home last month by posing as a PPL employee, according to the Lancaster County District Attorney’s office.

Alberto Merced’s burglary plot on Aug. 19 was foiled when the 85-year-old man summoned his son, who fought off the intruder.

The incident happened along the 900 block of Wabank Road in Lancaster city.

On Wednesday, Merced was ordered to be tried in county court on counts of burglary and simple assault, prosecutors said. Lancaster city police also added a felony firearms charge, according to Assistant District Attorney J. Alexander Marcinko.

Merced, 29, waived a preliminary hearing at District Judge Adam Witkonis’ office.

He is being held at Lancaster County Prison on $2.5 million bail.

Merced accessed the home by telling the elderly occupant he was a PPL employee. Once inside, Merced closed the door and pushed the man to the ground, pointing gun at his chest, police said. Merced had zip ties and latex gloves in a pocket, according to investigators.

The elderly called to his  son, who was downstairs, and the son was able to corral Merced. Both men sustained minor injuries.

City police arrived and arrested Merced.