Couple arrested in armed robbery

Posted Aug. 25, 2008, at 9:57 p.m.

PITTSFIELD, Maine — A local pair was arrested Saturday when an afternoon of visiting turned into an armed robbery, according to local police.

Robert Burt, 35, and Elizabeth Bernasconi Tansino, 41, remained in jail Monday, held on $20,000 cash bail. They were charged with Class A armed robbery, a crime punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

Pittsfield Officer Greg Sides said that Burt and Tansino were visiting friends at Deer Hill Apartments around 4:30 p.m. when Tansino suddenly attacked another female visitor.

“Elizabeth demanded the girl’s purse while Robert brandished a knife and held the other visitors off. He said he would cut them if they interfered,” Sides said. Both the robbery victim and a male guest were slightly injured by the knife but did not require hospitalization, Sides said.

There were six people in the apartment at the time of the robbery, Sides said, and since they were all acquaintances, they were able to identify Burt and Tansino. The pair was arrested later Saturday and taken to the Somerset County Jail in Skowhegan.

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