FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Jan. 29, 2014
VIRGINIA MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO HOME INVASION
Charleston, W.Va. – United States Attorney Booth Goodwin announced today that Robert L. Barcliff, 29, of Wytheville, Virginia, pleaded guilty in federal court in Charleston, West Virginia, to home invasion armed robbery. On April 22, 2012, Barcliff, Keith Glenn, Robert Jared Smith, and William Seltzer rushed a Marmet, West Virginia apartment thought to be occupied by drug dealers from Detroit, Michigan. Barcliff and Smith, dressed in dark clothing, stormed the apartment at gunpoint, stole drug money and then ran into hiding. Barcliff and his gang targeted drug dealers because they were thought to be unlikely to report the robberies to police for fear of implicating themselves in drug crimes. Other similar home invasion robberies were committed in Charleston and surrounding communities, but the crime spree also extended to Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee.
“Some of these robberies occurred in neighborhoods where families live and where children play outside---places where decent people have every right to expect to be safe and free from this type of violent behavior,” said U.S. Attorney Goodwin. “But when prescription and other types of illegal drugs are involved, criminal behavior is unpredictable and can be dangerous. Be assured, my office is committed to ensuring that these kind of offenders are identified, investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, so that people can be safe in their homes.”
Glenn, Smith, and Seltzer have all entered guilty pleas in federal court for charges related to this investigation and are awaiting sentencing.
Barcliff faces a up to life imprisonment when he is sentenced on May 7, 2014, by United States District Court Judge Thomas E. Johnston.
The South Charleston Police Department, Charleston Police Department, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Monica D. Coleman and Philip H. Wright are in charge of the prosecution.