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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Indiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 12, 2019

Cell phone store robber convicted in Federal Court

Cell phone store robber sentenced to 10 years for discharging firearm

INDIANAPOLIS –United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler announced today that an Indianapolis man was sentenced to 10 years and 1 day in federal prison for robbing a cell phone store in Indianapolis, Indiana. The sentence was handed down on July 11, 2019, after Andre Hamilton, 24, was found guilty of one count of Interference with Commerce by Means of Robbery and one count of discharging a Firearm during a Crime of Violence. The case was heard by U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker.

“Cell phone store robberies have declined since federal and local law enforcement involvement,” said Minkler. “It is imperative that individuals contemplating such heinous crimes know that these acts will not be tolerated and that they will be held accountable for their actions.”

The 10-year sentence in this case followed an investigation by the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. That investigation revealed that on February 9, 2018, Hamilton entered a Boost Mobile cell phone store located on North Michigan Road in Indianapolis, Indiana. He wore a mask over the lower portion of his face and was armed with a revolver. Hamilton demanded cash from the store’s register. When the victim-clerk hesitated, Hamilton fired his revolver into the ceiling of the store before fleeing in a vehicle. Thanks to the quick response of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and assisting officers with the Indiana State Police, Hamilton was apprehended shortly thereafter in the getaway car.

“Robberies – particularly those, like this one, in which the perpetrator discharges a firearm – inject fear into our community,” Minkler stated. “Law enforcement must continue to aggressively investigate such cases in order to protect the public. The safety of shoppers, employees, and all citizens is of paramount importance.”

“Violent crime remains a significant priority for the FBI and we are committed to identifying and pursuing individuals who utilize firearms for criminal purposes and put residents in danger,” said Grant Mendenhall, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Indianapolis Division. “This sentence highlights the partnerships the FBI has and the dedication of everyone involved in this investigation to ensure this individual is no longer a threat to our community.”

“We’ve made tremendous strides in the number of cell phone robberies as indicative in today’s announcement,” said Chief Bryan Roach. “IMPD will continue to leverage federal partnerships and the cell phone co-op to identify ways in increasing safety.” 

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Pamela Domash and Kendra Klump.

In October 2017, United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler announced a Strategic Plan designed to shape and strengthen the District’s response to its most significant public safety challenges. This prosecution demonstrates the Office’s firm commitment to prosecuting those who engage in violent crime involving firearms. See United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Indiana Strategic Plan 2.3

Updated July 12, 2019