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Harrisburg man convicted of robbing confidential informant at gunpoint

HARRISBURG — A Harrisburg man was convicted by a Dauphin County jury Friday of robbing a police confidential informant at gunpoint in 2016, according to the Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office.

Eric M. Collier was found guilty of Robbery and Criminal Conspiracy to Commit Robbery after a four-day trial before Dauphin County Judge Edward M. Marisco, Jr.

According to testimony at trial, on May 6, 2016, Collier robbed an informant who was working with the Pennsylvania Officer of Attorney General at the time. The informant was working with narcotics agents to buy an ounce of black tar heroin for $2,800. The target of the undercover drug deal was Tyrone Hill, a friend of Collier’s. After the informant arranged the drug deal with Hill, Collier and three other accomplices — Tyrone Hill, Michael Hill, and Darrin Bowers — drove to the arranged meeting place at Girard and Brookwood Streets in Harrisburg.

Meanwhile, narcotics agents gave the informant $2,800 in cash and followed him to the meeting place.

When all the parties arrived, Collier and Michael Hill approached the informant. But instead of giving the informant the drugs, Collier put a gun in the informant’s face and demanded the cash.

Once the informant gave Collier and Michael Hill the money, they returned to their vehicle and drove off.

 

Other narcotics agents were watching the transaction from an airplane, using an infrared camera. They followed the getaway car as it drove through Harrisburg. Police later apprehended the suspects.

According to testimony, Collier and his co-conspirators never had the black tar heroin.

“It was all a sham from the start,” said deputy district attorney Ryan P. Shovlin at trial. “They never had the heroin.”