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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 5, 2018

Two Men Plead Guilty to Brazen Capitol Hill Armed Robbery

Pharmacy Employees and Customers Were Held at Gunpoint in Afternoon Hold-Up

            WASHINGTON – Arturo Gray, 23, of Capitol Heights, Md., and Twon Brown, 24, of Washington D.C., have pled guilty to charges stemming from an armed robbery of a pharmacy last year on Capitol Hill, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu.

            Gray and Brown pled guilty on Oct. 4, 2018, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia to robbery while armed. The plea, which is contingent upon the Court’s approval, calls for an agreed-upon sentence of five years of incarceration. Brown also pled guilty to unlawful possession of a firearm in an unrelated case. That plea calls for an additional one year of incarceration. The Honorable Jennifer A. Di Toro scheduled sentencing for Nov. 30, 2018.

            According to a factual proffer submitted at the plea hearing and the government’s evidence, the robbery took place at approximately 2:20 p.m. on May 5, 2017, at a pharmacy in the 300 block of East Capitol Street NE. Brown and Gray entered the pharmacy together with another individual. Brown brandished a firearm and pointed it at employees and customers while Gray guarded the door and shouted commands at the employees.

            As the crime continued, Brown and another individual jumped over the counter and took prescription medications from the store while holding the employees at gunpoint. Brown, Gray, and the third individual then fled the establishment together. Video footage from inside the store helped to identify the defendants. Subsequently, law enforcement recovered text messages between the conspirators which showed them discussing their plans for the robbery. Further electronic evidence showed Gray searching on the Internet for the pharmacy in advance of the robbery and using Google Maps to navigate to the location.

            Gray was arrested on Oct. 16, 2017 and Brown was arrested on May 28, 2018. The defendants were indicted on Oct. 3, 2018, on 22 counts relating to the robbery and pled guilty the following day. This case was set to go to trial on Nov. 1, 2018 before the defendants pled guilty to the lead charge of the indictment.

            In announcing the pleas, U.S. Attorney Liu commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department, the FBI's Washington Field Office, and the FBI’s Cellular Analysis Survey Team. She also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialist Tiffany Fogle, Criminal Investigator John Marsh, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alyse Constantinide and Louis Manzo, who investigated, indicted and prosecuted the matter.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
18-272
Updated October 5, 2018