Cameron County Man Convicted On Charges Related To Armed Carjacking
The United States Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that following a three-day trial before U.S. District Court Judge Christopher C. Conner, an Emporium, Pennsylvania man was convicted late Wednesday on charges of carjacking, brandishing a gun during a crime of violence and receiving a stolen firearm stemming from an armed carjacking.
According to United States Attorney Peter J. Smith, on August 8, 2012, Thomas Edward Smith, age 58, pretended to be working on a car parked along a street in Emporium and flagged down an employee of Citizens & Northern Bank. Smith entered the vehicle and pulled out a handgun. Smith then directed the victim to drive to the Citizens & Northern Bank branch in Emporium. Smith told the victim this would be "the worst day of her life," that the victim and the bank had taken his house away from him in a bank foreclosure, and that the victim and another bank employee were now "going to pay for it." The victim jumped out of the vehicle to escape from Smith, who then also fled from the vehicle.
Smith was indicted in September 2012.
Sentencing is scheduled for November 15, 2013.
The case was investigated by the Emporium Borough Police Department, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Prosecution was handled by Assistant United States Attorney George J. Rocktashel.
A sentence following a finding of guilty is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
In this case, the maximum penalty under the federal statute is life imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.