West Haven Man Guilty of Meriden Carjacking
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that a federal jury in Hartford has found DON MEEKER, 30, of West Haven, guilty of carjacking. The trial before U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant began on December 8 and the jury returned its verdict late yesterday afternoon.
According to the evidence at trial, on January 1, 2016, two men from out of state who were driving a rented 2015 Volkswagen Passat were victims of an armed carjacking in the vicinity of Hobart Street and Myrtle Street in Meriden. The victims reported that they had asked an individual, later identified as Kyle Valentine, for directions at a gas station. Valentine told the victims to follow a car in which Valentine was a passenger. After traveling a few minutes, the car stopped. Valentine and Elbert Llorrens then exited the car and approached the Passat. Llorens pointed a handgun at one of the victims who was sitting in the passenger seat of the car, opened the door and stated “I want everything.” The victims exited the car and Llorens and Valentine stole their wallets and cell phones and then drove away in the Passat.
The investigation revealed that MEEKER drove the car that the carjacking victims followed, and that MEEKER provided the handgun to Llorens. After the robbery, MEEKER, Llorens and Valentine spilt the money stolen from the victims.
MEEKER was arrested on March 9, 2017.
MEEKER was convicted of one count of taking a motor vehicle from a person by force and violence or by intimidation, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 15 years. Judge Bryant scheduled sentencing for March 14, 2018. Judge Bryant also ordered MEEKER, who has been released on a $200,000 bond since June 2016, to be remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service pending sentencing.
Elbert Llorens and Kyle Valentine, both of New Haven, previously pleaded guilty to charges related to their roles in this carjacking. On March 20, 2017, Llorens was sentenced to 60 months of imprisonment. Valentine awaits sentencing.
This matter was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the East Haven, Meriden, Milford, New Haven and West Haven Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Douglas P. Morabito and Patrick F. Caruso.