Two Baltimore Men Plead Guilty To Armed Robbery Conspiracy
Baltimore, Maryland – Edward Lee, age 43, and Devan Martin, age 41, both of Baltimore, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to conspiring to rob a hair salon and its owner.
The guilty pleas were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Assistant Special Agent in Charge Gary Tuggle of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Baltimore District Office; Commissioner Anthony W. Batts of the Baltimore Police Department; and Baltimore City State’s Attorney Gregg L. Bernstein.
According to Lee and Martin’s plea agreements, on December 1, 2012, Lee, Martin and co-conspirator Michael Gwaltney, were seen via the Baltimore Police City Watch camera system approaching a man who was entering his vehicle, on Carrollton Avenue in Baltimore. Through the City Watch Camera, the monitoring officer was able to observe Lee, Martin and Gwaltney having a conversation with the individual. The conversation appeared to turn into an argument and the victim was seen handing money to Gwaltney, while Lee patted the victim down. As Lee turned away from the victim, the monitoring officer saw a gun in his hand. Lee and Gwaltney then escorted the victim across the street, while Martin rummaged through the victim’s vehicle and removed a briefcase from the trunk. As Lee and Gwaltney entered a building in the block, the City Watch operator saw a gun in Gwaltney’s waistband.
The City Watch operator called for police units to respond to the area. As the units responded, they stopped Martin approximately one-half block from the car with the briefcase. The officers then proceeded into the block and eventually located the victim leaving his wife's business, a hair salon. The victim advised officers that Lee and Gwaltney had taken him into the business and demanded drugs and money from him. The victim stated that after seeing the officers in the block, Gwaltney ordered the victim go out and tell the officers that everything was fine. Eventually, both Gwaltney and Lee exited the business, were placed under arrest, and the business was searched. Officers recovered a .38 caliber revolver, as well as clothing that matched the items worn by Gwaltney as he entered the location. In the yard adjacent to the business, officers recovered a 9mm semi-automatic handgun.
Lee, Martin and Gwaltney had agreed to carry out the robbery of the victim and the hair salon business.
Lee, Martin and the government have agreed that if the Court accepts their plea agreements Lee will be sentenced to 10 years in prison and Martin will be sentenced to between five and six years in prison. U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. has scheduled sentencing for Lee on August 13, 2014, and for Martin on September 4, 2014. Michael Gwaltney, age 39, of Baltimore, previously pleaded guilty to his role in the robbery and is awaiting sentencing.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the DEA, Baltimore Police Department and Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys James T. Wallner and Clinton J. Fuchs, who are prosecuting this Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force case.