Baltimore Career Offender Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison for Robbing a Thrift Store 3 Times in 8 Days

Also Committed 14 Other Robberies in 30 Days

November 8, 2011

Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge William M. Nickerson sentenced Mark Lomax, age 41, of Baltimore, Maryland, today to 20 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for robbing a Baltimore thrift store three times in eight days. Judge Nickerson enhanced Lomax’s sentence upon finding he is a career offender based on three previous robbery convictions. A federal jury convicted Lomax on June 15, 2011.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III; and Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler.

According to evidence presented at the three-day trial, on August 14, 20 and 22, 2009, Lomax robbed a Baltimore thrift store. Witnesses testified that on each occasion, Lomax threatened the store employee and brandished what he implied was a gun. According to trial testimony, as Lomax approached the store to commit the second robbery, the store employee recognized him and called police. Lomax ordered the employee to hang up the phone and again threatened her with what appeared to be a gun.

According to trial evidence, the store employee was closing the front door of the store on August 22nd when Lomax forced his way inside and went directly to the cash register, where a friend of the store employee was waiting. Lomax ordered that individual to open the cash register and threatened that person with what was believed to be a gun. The employee’s friend opened the register and gave Lomax $4. Lomax moved toward the store employee and attempted to grab her by the neck. Seeing this, the employee’s friend grabbed a baseball bat from behind the counter and struck Lomax repeatedly with it causing Lomax to fall to the ground. The store employee also struck Lomax in an effort to keep him from leaving the store, but Lomax managed to escape. Lomax left behind the $4 taken from the cash register and a baseball cap that he had been wearing during the robbery. The Baltimore Police Department DNA lab matched DNA left at the scene to Lomax.

Lomax was arrested on August 25, 2009, by members of the Baltimore Police Citywide Robbery Task Force. In his possession, wrapped in a plastic bag, was a collapsible wooden yard-stick taped and covered to appear like a firearm.

According to information presented at today’s sentencing hearing. Lomax committed 14 additional robberies in a 30 day period and stole approximately $4,500.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI and Baltimore Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorney Debra L. Dwyer and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerald A. Collins, a cross designated Maryland Assistant Attorney General assigned to Exile cases, who prosecuted the case.

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