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JURY FINDS SHREVEPORT MEN GUILTY OF ROBBING BUSINESSES IN LOUISIANA AND TEXAS AT GUNPOINT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 18, 2014

SHREVEPORT, La. United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced today that a federal jury found Myles W. Robinson, 20, and Halston M. Smith, 22, both of Shreveport, guilty of taking part in a string of robberies in Louisiana and Texas. United States District Judge Elizabeth E. Foote presided over the trial.

The trial started Monday and ended today with the jury returning a guilty verdict after deliberating for three and a half hours.  Robinson was found guilty of all 27 counts of the indictment, and Smith was found guilty of 13 counts.  Smith was found not guilty of interference with commerce by robbery, which is Count 10 of the indictment, and he was found not guilty of use of a firearm during a crime of violence, which is Count 11 of the indictment.

According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, the armed robberies took place between June 1, 2012 and November 14, 2012 at 15 businesses with the men stealing more than $17,900.  Robinson took part in all of the robberies but perpetrated five of the robberies alone.  In some cases a shotgun was used, in other cases a handgun, and sometimes both were used to rob the businesses.  The defendants robbed businesses in Shreveport, La., Bossier City, La., Stonewall, La., Oil City, La., and Atlanta, Texas.  In addition to Robinson and Smith, two other defendants, James D. Tyson, 22, and Tremario D. Washington, 23, took part in the robberies.

“These men threatened and frightened the citizens of the community out of greed,” stated Finley.  “Hopefully, the citizens will feel safer now that they have been brought to justice.  This verdict is the result of the dedicated prosecutors and various agencies who investigated this case, and they are to be commended for all of their hard work.”

Robinson faces a 312-year prison term and Smith a 134-year prison term.  For the count charging conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, they face up to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and five years of supervised release, and they also face 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and five years of supervised release for each robbery count.  For using firearms during a crime of violence, the first count requires seven years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and five years of supervised release.  After that, each firearms count requires 25 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and five years of supervised release.  Sentencing for Robinson and Smith is set for June 4, 2014.

 Washington pleaded guilty on June 6, 2013, and Tyson pleaded guilty on July 1, 2013 to one count of conspiracy and one count of using firearms during a crime of violence.  Washington and Tyson are scheduled to be sentenced on February 5, 2014.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Caddo Parish District Attorney’s Office, DeSoto Parish District Attorney’s Office, Bossier Parish District Attorney’s Office, Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office, Shreveport Police Department, Bossier City Police Department, and the Atlanta, Texas Police Department took part in the investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys James G. Cowles and Seth D. Reeg are prosecuting the case.

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