News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Minneapolis man sentenced for robbing the Erte’ Restaurant

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 22, 2012


MINNEAPOLIS – Earlier today in federal court, a 42-year-old Minneapolis man was
sentenced for committing the armed robbery of a Minneapolis restaurant on February 10, 2011.
United States District Court Judge David S. Doty sentenced Charles Vincent Fletcher to195
months in federal prison on one count of interference with commerce by robbery, pursuant to the
Hobbs Act, and one count of being a felon in possession of firearm. Fletcher was indicted on
June 15, 2011, and pleaded guilty on October 13, 2011.

In his plea agreement, Fletcher admitted that on February 10, 2011, he entered the
restaurant, requesting to see the manager. He then pulled out a nine-millimeter pistol and forced
two employees into an office, where he demanded money. When he realized no money was
available, he took a cordless phone, a wallet, and a set of keys from the employees. As police
arrived, Fletcher dropped the wallet and gun and ran from the premises. He was arrested a short
time later, the phone and keys still in his possession.

Because he is a felon, Fletcher cannot legally possess firearms or ammunition at any time.
He has a Dakota County conviction for third-degree burglary (1997) and two Hennepin County
convictions for third-degree burglary (2006).

In the present case, he was charged under the Hobbs Act, which was passed by Congress in
1946 and allows federal prosecutors to prosecute criminals who commit robberies in places of
business involved in interstate commerce. For violent defendants with aggravated criminal
histories, federal prosecution of these cases can be beneficial since the penalties are often
tougher than under state law. Furthermore, because the federal system has no parole, those who
receive federal sentences serve virtually their entire prison sentences behind bars.

This case was the result of an investigation by the Minneapolis Police Department and the
U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S.
Attorney Thomas M. Hollenhorst.

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