Jury Convicts Houston Man For Robbery Of Postal Vehicle
HOUSTON – Kenton Deon Harrell, 41, has been convicted of conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson. A federal jury convicted the Houston resident this morning following four days of trial and approximately three hours of deliberation.
The jury heard that on or about Feb. 21, 2013, Harrell met with Charles Ray Blake and Kenneth Shane Howard to plan the robbery of a contract postal vehicle. The three men had received information that the vehicle contained more than $2 million in cash and precious metals. Evidence at trial showed that the three men had been provided with a description of the vehicle, the route it would be taking and the time the vehicle would leave the post office in downtown Houston.
According to testimony, the co-conspirators acted on that information and stopped the vehicle as planned as it entered onto I-10 from downtown Houston. They forcibly removed the driver at gun point and drove the vehicle to a location where they removed jewelry worth approximately $240,000.
Blake, 41, Howard, 34, and Malcolm Derrail Williams, 32, all of Houston, previously pleaded guilty for their respective roles in the scheme and are pending sentencing, Blake will be sentenced Sept. 9, 2014, while Howard, Williams and Harrell are set for Oct. 10, 2014. Blake was permitted to remain on bond, while Howard and Williams were ordered to remain in custody. Previously released on bond, Harrell was taken into custody where he will remain pending sentencing. All face up to 20 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States Attorneys Richard D. Hanes and Sharad Khandelwal prosecuted the case.