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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Indianapolis Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Federal Prison for Seven Separate Auto Parts Store Robberies

Filzen was on parole for felony burglary at the time fo the robberies

INDIANAPOLIS – United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler announced today, Korrtel Filzen, 30, Indianapolis, was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison, by U.S. District Judge Richard L. Young, in the federal courthouse in Indianapolis. Filzen was previously indicted and pleaded guilty to charges of robbery and brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime at today’s change of plea and sentencing hearing.

"Reducing gun violence remains the top priority of the U.S. Attorney’s Office," said Minkler. "Removing a violent individual like Filzen from our city for 30 years makes us all safer."

From December 2017 through January 6, 2018, Filzen was involved in seven separate auto part store armed robberies. Filzen was on parole for felony burglary at the time of the robberies. Filzen targeted AutoZone and O’Reilly’s Auto Parts stores located primarily on the southwest and northwest sides of Indianapolis. Filzen also robbed an AutoZone store located in Carmel, Ind. During the robberies, Filzen often dressed in a dark colored hoodie-style sweatshirt, threatening violence and terrorizing victims, by brandishing a pistol and holding store employees at gunpoint, including placing a pistol in one of the victim’s faces in order to force them to comply with his demands. Another robber purposely struck a victim in the face with a pistol during a robbery. Filzen and the other robbers demanded money from the store registers, cash drop-boxes, and often moved employees to store safe locations and directed employees to remove the money from the safes.

As part of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) investigation into the armed robberies, IMPD seized internal surveillance video recorded by the store’s security cameras. Due to the clarity of the video and the visibility of Filzen’s face from one of AutoZone’s security cameras, IMPD issued a "Be On the Look-Out" (BOLO) flier of Filzen. Filzen was identified as one of the robbers from the BOLO that was posted to a Crime Stoppers website. A victim from one of the robberies also identified Filzen from a photo array. Filzen was arrested on January 9, 2018.

This case was the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Carmel Police Department.

"This sentence sends a clear message that violent individuals such as Mr. Filzen, who threatened people simply doing their jobs and instilled fear in the community, will be held accountable for their actions," said Special Agent in Charge Grant Mendenhall, FBI Indianapolis. "The FBI and our law enforcement partners remain committed to ensuring residents feel safe in their homes, places of work, and in their communities."

"The arrest and prosecution of Mr. Filzen shows the power and importance of the collaborative efforts of law enforcement on the local, state, and federal levels," said Carmel Police Chief Jim Barlow. "Crime knows no jurisdictional boundaries and law enforcement must work together as a team. The success of this case highlights the cooperation and hard work of our officers, detectives, and agents. We are pleased that Central Indiana will be safer while Mr. Filzen is in prison."

According to Assistant United States Attorney Peter A. Blackett, who prosecuted this case for the government, Filzen must serve three years of supervised release following his prison sentence.

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 commit violent crimes involving firearms. See United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Indiana Strategic Plan Section 2.3.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Updated January 9, 2020