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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Kentucky

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Louisville Man Sentenced To 37 Years In Prison For His Role In A String Of Armed Robberies In Metro Louisville

Federal prosecution resulted from “Project Recoil”

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – United States Attorney John E. Kuhn, Jr. today announced the 37-year sentence of a violent convicted felon for his role in a string of armed robberies in Metro Louisville. The federal charges stemmed from “Project Recoil,” the on-going partnership of multiple Jefferson County, Kentucky law enforcement agencies, developed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Kentucky, to maximize penalties for the most violent offenders and to reduce violent crime in our community.

“Project Recoil, a collaborative initiative between federal and local law enforcement, is working to identify and successfully prosecute the most dangerous offenders in our community,” stated United States Attorney John Kuhn.  “This sentence is an example of how well our partnership is working,”

Jescell Whittle was convicted of obstruction of interstate commerce through robbery of two businesses, and using a firearm in connection with the two robberies following a six-day trial on August 30, 2016, in Louisville.  Whittle was found guilty of attempting to rob the Cricket Wireless store, located at 3125 W. Broadway, and using a firearm in the commission of the attempted robbery that occurred on October 23, 2012.  A surveillance video showed Whittle brandishing a firearm and attempting to vault the counter before running out of the store without any money.  Whittle was also found guilty of aiding and abetting in the robbery of a Speedway, located on 3030 Taylor Boulevard on October 31, 2012, and discharging a firearm in the commission of that robbery. 

This successful prosecution has resulted in the sentencing of three other co-defendants, to lengthy prison sentences, for their roles in the armed robberies of two Cricket Wirelesses and three convenience stores in Metro Louisville. Whittle was sentenced yesterday, December 5, 2016, in United States District Court by Chief Judge Joseph H. McKinley Jr.

For their roles in the armed robberies of three businesses located in Jefferson County, Kentucky, co-defendant James Gore, Jr., was sentenced to serve 72 months in prison followed by a three-year period of supervised release, while co-defendant Tony Trumbo, Jr., was sentenced to serve 255 months in prison followed by a three-year period of supervised release.  Both men were sentenced on July 9, 2015.

Gore previously pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the obstruction of interstate commerce through robbery of two businesses.  Trumbo previously pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the obstruction of interstate commerce through robbery, attempted robbery of three businesses, and aiding and abetting the discharge of a firearm during a robbery.  

According to the plea agreement, Gore admitted to robbing a Thorntons, with several other individuals, located at 4516 Poplar Level Road on October 30, 2012, and to robbing a Speedway, with several other individuals, located on 3030 Taylor Boulevard on October 31, 2012.  Surveillance video taken from the Thorntons robbery shows Gore brandishing two firearms during the robbery.         

In a separate plea agreement, defendant Trumbo admitted to attempting to rob the Cricket Wireless store, located at 3125 W. Broadway, along with other individuals, on October 23, 2012.  Surveillance video taken from the store shows Trumbo along with an accomplice who was brandishing a firearm, attempting to rob the store. Trumbo also admitted to being one of several people to rob the Thorntons located at 4516 Poplar Level Road, on October 30, 2012.  Trumbo further admitted to being one of several people to rob the Speedway located at 3030 Taylor Boulevard on October 31, 2012.  During the course of that robbery, Whittle shot a Speedway customer in the back causing serious bodily injury.  

Co-defendant Dahntel Newsome pleaded guilty to multiple charges on September 9, 2015, and was sentenced to 243 months in prison. Newsome admitted to being the getaway driver during the commission of the robbery of the Crickett Wireless store on Cane Run Road.  He further admitted to being the getaway driver during the robbery of the Cricket Wireless Store on West Broadway in Louisville, and admitted to using a handgun and threatening to shoot the clerk in the foot during the robbery of a JC Cigarette Outlet located on Crums Lane and to driving the getaway vehicle.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys A. Spencer McKiness and Rob Bonar, and was investigated by the Louisville Metro Police Department.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Updated December 6, 2016