Three sentenced in October 2010 robberies

Jan. 25, 2013 @ 05:48 PM

Three defendants involved in armed robberies of Monroe businesses in October 2010 have been sentenced to 268 months in prison.

Anne M. Tompkins, United States Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina, announced sentences in a Jan. 25 statement.

In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr., ordered Reginald Lamont Chambers, 27, of Monroe, to serve three years of supervised release and to pay $3,100 as restitution. Wayne L. Dixie, special agent in charge of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Charlotte Field Division and Chief Debra Duncan of the Monroe Police Department, joined Tompkins in making the announcement, according to the statement.

According to court documents and statements made in court on Oct. 18, 2010, Chambers robbed a Dollar General store on East Sunset Drive in Monroe. During the robbery, he held the store clerk at gunpoint and forced the clerk to open the safe. Court records show that he ripped the store's telephones out of their jacks and took the phones with him. He also attempted to lock the clerk in the back office before leaving with the store's money, according to the statement.

According to court documents and statements made in court on Oct. 20, 2010, Chambers and his co-defendants, Anthony Polk and Trenton Raley, robbed La Chiquita store on Concord Avenue in Monroe. Chambers and Raley held two clerks up at gunpoint and robbed money from the store and one of the clerk's purses and its contents. Polk was the getaway driver in the robbery. Court records show that all three defendants were arrested in the early morning hours of Oct. 21, 2010 in the get-away car and in possession of the firearms used by Chambers and Raley.

In Dec. 2011, Chambers, who is a member of the United Blood Nation street gang, pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery of a business affecting interstate commerce, also known as Hobbs Act robberies, one count of carrying and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of robbery and one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Under the United States Sentencing Guidelines, Chambers was sentenced as an armed career criminal.

On Nov. 29, 2011, Raley, 20, of Peachland, pleaded guilty to one count of Hobbs Act robbery and one count of carrying and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime. He was sentenced on Jan. 23 to serve 67 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release.

On Dec. 1, 2011, Polk, 30, of Monroe, pleaded guilty to one count of Hobbs Act robbery. He was sentenced on Oct. 23, 2012, to 51 months in prison and three years of supervised release. Raley and Polk will be jointly and severally liable with Chambers for restitution to victims of the La Chiquita robbery, according to the statement.

All three defendants are in federal custody. Upon designation of a federal facility they will be transferred to the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Federal sentences are served without the possibility of parole. The investigation was handled by ATF and the Monroe Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney J. George Guise handled the prosecution, according to the statement.