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Press Release

Albuquerque man pleads guilty to brandishing a firearm during crime of violence

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico
Defendant arrested in Nov. 2018 after leading officers on high speed chase

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Donovan Young, 22, of Albuquerque, N.M, pleaded guilty this morning in federal court to a felony information charging him with using, carrying and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence.  In entering the guilty plea, Young admitted brandishing a firearm while committing a carjacking on Nov. 2, 2018, in Albuquerque. 

Court records reflect that officers of the Albuquerque Police Department and deputies of the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office arrested Young on state charges on Nov. 2, 2018.  Thereafter, on Nov. 5, 2018, Special Agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives arrested Young on a federal criminal complaint that charged him with carjacking and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. 

The criminal complaint charged Young with robbing the carjacking victim in the parking lot of a supermarket on Nov. 2, 2018.  According to the complaint, Young took the victim’s keys, wallet, and cellphone by pointing an AK-type rifle at the victim and telling him that his belongings “aren’t worth your life.”  After Young fled the scene in the victim’s pickup truck, officers located Young at a nearby gas station using a tracking feature for the victim’s phone.  Young sped away when officers tried to arrest him, leading officers on a pursuit through residential neighborhoods reaching speeds more than 100 miles per hour.  Officers arrested Young when he stopped his truck in a mound of dirt and recovered a rifle matching the victim’s description of the firearm used in the crime. The victim identified Young as the man who pointed the rifle at him at the supermarket.

A federal grand jury indicted Young on carjacking and firearms charges on Nov. 28, 2018. 

In his plea agreement, Young admitted using a firearm to commit a carjacking offense in Bernalillo County on Nov. 2, 2018.  Young also admitted threatening the victim, the owner of the vehicle, by pointing a firearm at the victim and demanding that the victim surrender the keys to his vehicle, his wallet and his phone.  Young acknowledged that the victim complied with Young’s demands because he was intimidated by Young’s actions. 

Young has been in federal custody since his arrest on the complaint, and will remain detained pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.  At sentencing, Young faces a maximum statutory mandatory minimum of seven years and a maximum of life imprisonment. 

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Albuquerque Police Department, and the Bernalillo County’s Sheriff’s Office.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Samuel A. Hurtado.

Updated November 4, 2019

Press Release Number: 19-180