Prison for man who shoved 64-year-old Hanover woman down flight of stairs

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch
Robert Lee Ebron Jr.

An apparent attempted robber who caused long-term injuries to a 64-year-old Hanover woman has been sentenced to state prison.

Robert Lee Ebron Jr., 20, of Hanover, apologized in York County Court on July 30, where he was sentenced to three to six years in prison and given 361 days' credit for the prison time he served since being charged in the assault.

Ebron pleaded guilty to first-degree felony aggravated assault on June 19, according to court records. In exchange, misdemeanor charges of simple assault and reckless endangerment were dropped, court records state.

A charge of attempted robbery was dismissed by a district judge before the case was moved to York County Court, according to court records.

Deputy prosecutor Greg Liero said the victim suffered a number of injuries during the failed robbery.

"(Ebron) shoved her down a flight of stairs," Liero said. "He shoved her so hard, she never touched any of the stairs."

The woman landed on her shoulder at the base of the stairs, after which Ebron hit her once or twice with a book bag, rifled through her belongings and fled without taking anything, Liero said.

The victim needed a shoulder replacement and elbow surgery and suffered four broken ribs plus a head wound that required medical staples to close, according to the prosecutor.

Her life-changing injuries forced her to retire from her factory job, and she is still undergoing physical therapy, Liero said.

"She also had to move in with her daughter so her daughter could take care of her," the prosecutor said.

Ebron apologized in court to the victim and to his own family, according to Liero.

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The background: The attempted robbery happened about 4:10 a.m. Aug. 3, 2018, in the 200 block of Pleasant Avenue, according to Hanover Borough Police.

Police said Ebron wore a dark-colored mask during the failed robbery and fled west on School Avenue afterward.

Liero said even though the attempted robbery charge was dropped, the prosecution's theory of the case remains unchanged — that Ebron attacked the woman while trying to rob her.

The victim spoke in court during Ebron's sentencing hearing, telling the judge about the injuries she suffered and the changes in her life because of them, Liero said.

The victim asked the judge not to allow Ebron a chance to enter the state prison system's boot-camp program for young offenders, but Liero said he asked the judge to make Ebron eligible for it.

Liero said the state's anti-recidivism program is a good fit for Ebron, who doesn't have a lengthy criminal record. Presiding Senior Common Pleas Judge Robert J. Eby ruled that Ebron can enroll in the prison boot camp if state prison officials choose to let him join.

Ebron's defense attorney, Ashley Drue Martin, said Ebron was attending college and holding down a job at the time of the incident.

Martin said mitigating factors led to the sentence and cited the police report, which she said states Ebron was jogging when the victim asked him, "Do you even live here?" and used a racial slur toward him.

"This is in no way an excuse or justification for his actions or the extent of her injuries, but it is a substantial mitigating fact, and I am proud that in 2019, the criminal justice system recognizes the mitigation."

She said the assault was "entirely out of character" for Ebron, and that he will be repaying the victim's medical expenses.

Martin said she believes he is already rehabilitated.

— Reach senior crime reporter Liz Evans Scolforo at or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.