News and Press Releases

Gallup Man Receives 41-Month Year Prison Sentence for Federal Robbery Conviction

February 23, 2011

ALBUQUERQUE – This morning, Senior United States District Judge John E. Conway sentenced Reuben H. Martin to a 41-month term of imprisonment to be followed by a four-year term of supervised release for his federal robbery conviction. Martin, a 27-year-old member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Gallup, New Mexico, has been in federal custody since his arrest on September 29, 2009.

United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales said that Martin and three co-defendants robbed the Naschitti Trading Post Store (Trading Post) in Naschitti, New Mexico on September 20, 2009. According to a criminal complaint, after Martin and co-defendants Larro A. Begay, Theron J. Reed and Bernellia A. Reed agreed to rob the Trading Post, Bernellia Reed drove the three men to the vicinity of the Trading Post and waited while the men followed through with their plan. After entering the Trading Post, Theron Reed and Begay stationed themselves strategically within the store while Martin, who was wearing a mask and brandishing a black toy gun, approached the clerk at the cash register and demanded money. After the clerk gave the money in the register's cash drawer to Martin, the three men fled from the Trading Post to the waiting car and Bernellia Reed drove them away from the area.

The robbery was recorded by the Trading Post's video surveillance equipment, and an employee positively identified Begay as one of the robbers. Thereafter, Martin, Theron Reed and Bernellia Reed were identified during an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Navajo Nation Department of Public Safety (NNDPS). All four defendants were charged in criminal complaints filed on September 23, 2009 and subsequently were indicted on October 21, 2009.

Martin's three co-defendants are enrolled members of the Navajo Nation who reside in Sheep Springs, New Mexico, and each has entered a guilty plea to robbing the Trading Post. Begay, 19, entered his guilty plea on July 14, 2010; on December 8, 2010, Judge Conway sentenced Begay to a 33-month term of imprisonment to be followed by three years supervised release. Theron Reed, 25, entered his guilty plea on June 22, 2010, and was sentenced to a 37- month term of imprisonment to be followed by three years supervised release by Judge Conway on November 10, 2010. Begay and Reed are serving their prison sentences.

Bernellia Reed entered her guilty plea on June 22, 2010, and is released under pretrial supervision pending her sentencing hearing which is scheduled for May 11, 2011.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shana B. Pennington and was investigated by the FBI with assistance from the NNDPS.

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