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Press Release

Saint Paul Felon Sentenced To 110 Months In Prison For Violent Attempted Robbery, Drug-Trafficking And Multiple Firearms Violations

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Minnesota

United States Attorney Erica H. MacDonald announced the sentencing of MICHAEL CORTEZ REED, 27, to 110 months in prison for the violent attempted robbery of a Walgreens pharmacy, as well as drug-trafficking and firearms violations. REED, who pleaded guilty to five felony counts on June 21, 2019, was sentenced today before Senior Judge David S. Doty in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

According to his guilty plea and documents filed in court, on August 27, 2017, REED entered a Walgreens pharmacy in St. Paul, Minnesota, violently assaulted a store employee and forced the employee to open to store’s drug vault in an attempt to steal controlled substances. The employee told REED that the vault was on a time-delay and that it could not be opened. REED ran out of the store when the store manager confronted him. REED also admitted that between September 13, 2017 and September 5, 2018, he was in possession of over 25 grams of methamphetamine, small amounts of heroin and cocaine, and three firearms, including a Ruger model P95DC nine-millimeter semi-automatic firearm, a Phoenix Arms model Raven 25 .25-caliber semi-automatic pistol, and a Kahr Arms model P380 .380-caliber semi-automatic pistol. The Ruger firearm was loaded with an extended 30-round magazine attached to it, and the Kahr Arms firearm had been previously reported stolen. Because he is a felon, REED is prohibited under federal law from possessing any type of firearm or ammunition at any time.

The Hobbs Act, passed by Congress in 1946, allows federal prosecutors to prosecute individuals who commit robberies of businesses engaged in interstate commerce.

This case was the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Saint Paul Police Department. This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, an initiative that brings together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.

Assistant United States Attorneys Benjamin Bejar and Thomas Calhoun-Lopez prosecuted the case.


Defendant Information:

MICHAEL CORTEZ REED, a/k/a “Hyphy,” 27

St. Paul, Minn.


  • Attempted interference with commerce by robbery (Hobbs Act), 1 count
  • Felon in possession of a firearm, 3 counts
  • Possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, 1 count


  • 110 months in prison
  • Five years of supervised release


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United States Attorney’s Office, District of Minnesota: (612) 664-5600

Updated October 28, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Violent Crime