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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Pennsylvania

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Federal Attempted Robbery and Firearms Charges Filed after Philadelphia Man Received Lenient Plea Deal from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office

PHILADELPHIA, PA – United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced today that a federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment against Jovaun Patterson, 30, of Philadelphia. The indictment charges him with one count of attempted robbery which interferes with interstate commerce, 18 U.S.C. § 1951(a), and one count of using, carrying, and discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(iii).  These charges stem from an alleged robbery on May 5, 2018, of the KCJ, Inc. convenience store, a business engaged in interstate commerce and located in Philadelphia.

If convicted of the attempted robbery, the defendant faces a maximum penalty of 20 years’ imprisonment; a $250,000 fine; 3 years’ supervised release; and a $100 special assessment.  If convicted of the firearms charge, the defendant faces a maximum penalty of lifetime imprisonment, a mandatory term of 10 years’ imprisonment, to be served consecutive to any other sentence imposed; up to 5 years’ supervised release; a $250,000 fine; and a $100 special assessment.

Prior to today’s federal indictment, Patterson was arrested for the May 5, 2018 incident and charged by the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office with attempted murder, aggravated assault, robbery–threat of immediate serious injury, possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, possession of a firearm on a street in Philadelphia, possessing an instrument of crime, simple assault, and recklessly endangering another person.  On November 15, 2018, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office permitted Patterson to enter a negotiated guilty plea to aggravated assault, robbery–threat of immediate serious injury, and possessing an instrument of crime, with a sentence of only 3½ to 10 years’ imprisonment. 

“Violent crime is a top priority of the Department of Justice and my Office,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain.  “Prosecutors are supposed to advocate for victims, protect the community, and always seek justice.  I can assure the citizens of Philadelphia that the prosecutors in my Office, working with our federal and state law enforcement partners, as well as with the Philadelphia police, will do everything in our power to do that in each and every case, including this one.”

“ATF remains committed to removing violent offenders from our community,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Brian Gallagher. “We look forward to continuing to work with our partners at all levels to make our citizens safer.”

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. October 3, 2018, marked one year since the Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN as part of its renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, with assistance from the Philadelphia Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Salvatore Astolfi.

An indictment, information, or criminal complaint is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Updated February 28, 2019