Feds announced gun crime arrests and arrests in jewelry store robbery | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Feds announced gun crime arrests and arrests in jewelry store robbery

Posted By on Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 2:10 PM

click to enlarge RESULTS:  Chris Thyer (second from right) joined by other law enforcement people at today's news conference, including Little Rock Chief Kenton Buckner at th microphone. - BRIAN CHILSON
  • Brian Chilson
  • RESULTS: Chris Thyer (second from right) joined by other law enforcement people at today's news conference, including Little Rock Chief Kenton Buckner at th microphone.

Federal and state officials held a news conference today to announce arrests aimed at reducing violent crime as well as the arrest of the two gunmen in a 2015 robbery of Roberson's Fine Jewelry in the Pleasant Ridge Shopping Center.

U.S. Attorney Chris Thyer, joined by local police and prosecutors, said there'd been 41 arrests as a result of the Violence Reduction Network initiative, primarily charges against ex-convicts on gun or drug charges. He said he'd been skeptical of the effort, promoted by former Attorney General Eric Holder, but had grown to see the value of the collaboration with Little Rock and West Memphis and others.
click to enlarge THE ROBERSON HEIST - KARK
  • KARK

Additionally, they announced the arrest of two more suspects in the robbery of Roberson's Fine Jewelry Sept. 22, 2015, bringing to seven arrests in the crime. From the release:

Quinshod Shaw, 27, of Oklahoma City, Okla., was arrested Monday afternoon in Norman, Okla., and appeared before United States District Judge Charles B. Goodwin in the Western District of Oklahoma. Also Monday, Darris Denton, 29, Oklahoma City, Okla., was served an arrest warrant while being held in the McAlford Corrections Center in Stringfield, Okla., on unrelated state charges. Following the arrests, a second superseding indictment, which was returned by the Grand Jury on February 7, 2017, was unsealed. This unsealed indictment added Shaw and Denton, who have been identified as the two gunmen who assisted in the robbery, to five previously indicted defendants.

On September 22, 2015, Shaw and Denton, along with Tony Gabriel, 49, Oklahoma City, Okla., and Siee Ramon Russell, 38, Oklahoma City, Okla., entered Roberson’s Fine Jewelry, located on Cantrell Road in Little Rock. While Shaw and Denton pointed guns at the employees and a customer, Russell smashed jewelry cases with a hammer and Gabriel grabbed various jewelry, including diamond earrings, bracelets, and rings, and placed it in a bag. The group stole more than $300,000 worth of jewelry.

The four men fled the store and left the scene in a stolen truck, which they abandoned in a nearby neighborhood. In the neighborhood, the group met Lenora Grant, 60, of Oklahoma City, Okla., Jobie Kirk, 51, Oklahoma City, Okla., and Darryl Madden, 52, Moore, Okla., and all co-conspirators drove back to Oklahoma in two vehicles.

The Little Rock Police Department obtained blood samples from broken shards of glass from the smashed cases which identified Russell’s DNA. LRPD also secured a hat which was used by a perpetrator in the robbery and discarded in the abandoned stolen truck. A DNA sample lifted off of the hat identified Gabriel. Surveillance video taken from the store confirmed the actions taken by the defendants.

“The arrests today demonstrate the need to aggressively pursue and prosecute those who commit violent crimes in our community in efforts to make Arkansas a safer place for all,” Upchurch said. “We appreciate the strong commitment of the Eastern District of the United States Attorney’s Office and the Little Rock Police Department.”

An indictment naming Gabriel and Russell was returned April 6, 2016. That original three-count indictment charged both defendants with conspiracy to commit a Hobb’s Act violation (interfering with commerce by means of robbery), aiding and
abetting a Hobb’s Act violation, and aiding and abetting brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.

The getaway drivers—Grant, Kirk, and Madden—were named in a first superseding indictment, which contained the same charges and was returned on July 6, 2016. The second superseding indictment, unsealed Monday, also contains the same charges and names the two gunmen, Shaw and Denton.

On October 6, 2016, before United States District Court Judge J. Leon Holmes, Gabriel and Russell each pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, and will be sentenced by Judge Holmes at a later date.

In their plea agreements, Gabriel and Russell admitted to the facts of the robbery, including everyone’s individual role.

Kirk, Madden, and Grant are set for trial before Judge Holmes on April 24, 2017. Shaw and Denton will appear before Judge Holmes for plea and arraignment at a later date, after they are transported to Little Rock.

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