FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug. 26, 2010
TWO PLEAD GUILTY IN ARMED ROBBERIES IN HAMILTON, GREELEY COUNTIES
WICHITA, KAN. – Kristina Pauline Lashmet, 23, Johnson City, Kan., and Ryan Wesley Swisher, 28, Johnson City, Kan., have pleaded guilty in connection with armed robberies in Hamilton and Greeley counties, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said today.
Lashmet and Swisher both pleaded guilty to one count of aiding and abetting the discharge of a firearm during a robbery. In their pleas, they admitted that on Feb. 14, 2010, they agreed with co-defendant John Grant Shore, 23, Johnson City, Kan., to commit an armed robbery. Initially, the three defendants drove to Loves Country Store at 208 E. Highway 50 in Syracuse, Kan. Seeing a police car parked nearby, they drove instead to Eagle Travel Plaza, 215 W. Kansas, in Tribune, Kan.
At the Eagle Travel Plaza, Shore went into the store alone, pointed a gun at the store clerk and demanded money. Shore opened the cylinder of the gun and showed the clerk the bullets, telling her that if she did not open the safe he would shoot her in the foot. He took some cash and several packages of cigarettes.
Back in the car, the three defendants drove again to the Loves Country Store in Syracuse. Shore and Lashmet went into the store. Shore showed the clerk a gun, demanded money, and fired a single shot in the clerk’s direction. Then Shore fired four times at the locking mechanism of the store safe. Shore and Lashmet took cash, two cartons of cigarettes and 40 lighters before leaving the store.
The investigation subsequently led to a search warrant being served March 9, 2010, at Shore’s residence at 302 Nipp in Johnson City, Kan., and the arrest of the three defendants.
Swisher and Lashmet’s sentencing is set for Nov. 10, 2010. They face a penalty of not less than 10 years and not more than life in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000, as well as restitution. Shore is set for jury trial Sept. 21, 2010.
Grissom commended the Greeley County Sheriff’s Office, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, the Stanton County Sheriff’s Office, the Seward County Sheriff’s Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Treaster for their work on the case.
In all cases, defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. The indictments merely contain allegations of criminal conduct.