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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

Thursday, January 31, 2019

District Men Plead Guilty to Federal Charges for Armed Robberies Targeting Commercial Establishments

Series of Crimes Took Place Across Area in 2017

            WASHINGTON – Jarvell Kent, 21, and Olona Roba, 20, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty today to federal charges stemming from their involvement in a total of four armed robberies that were committed in three quadrants of the District of Columbia, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu, Nancy McNamara, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Peter Newsham, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

            Kent and Roba pled guilty before the Honorable Randolph D. Moss in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to one count of using, carrying, possessing, and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence and two counts of interference with interstate commerce by robbery, for four separate incidents.  Because a firearm was brandished during the commission of the offenses, both men face a mandatory seven years of incarceration, which must run consecutive to any sentence imposed for the additional two armed robberies.  They are scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Moss on April 23, 2019.

            The government’s evidence established that Kent and Roba robbed two 7-Eleven convenience stores at gunpoint, while wearing masks.  During both armed robberies, one of the weapons used was a large black sub‑machine gun style firearm with an extended magazine. The first robbery took place on May 5, 2017, at approximately 11:40 p.m., at a store in the 3200 block of Pennsylvania Avenue SE. The second was on May 11, 2017, at approximately 1 a.m., at a store in the 4400 block of Benning Road NE.

            In addition to the armed robberies that the defendants jointly committed, each defendant admitted involvement in additional armed robberies.  Kent pled guilty to a May 15, 2017, armed robbery of another 7-Eleven located in the 900 block of 17th Street NW, and Roba pled guilty to a March 4, 2017, armed robbery of a carryout driver in the 5800 block of Southern Avenue SE, a crime in which shots were fired at the carryout driver as he fled from the scene.

            Kent and Roba were arrested in May 2017 and have been in custody ever since.

            In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Liu, Assistant Director in Charge McNamara, and Chief Newsham commended the work of the FBI Agents and MPD officers who linked together investigations that spanned three quadrants of the District of Columbia and arrested Kent and Roba.  They also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brittany Keil, Laura Crane, and William Schurmann, with assistance from Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Kerkhoff, Paralegal Specialists Rommel Pachoca and Antoinette Sakamsa, and Legal Assistant Peter Gaboton.

Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated January 31, 2019