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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Grand Rapids Men Sentenced For Armed Robbery

          GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN - U.S. Attorney Andrew Birge announced today that Christopher Desonier and Angel Leon were sentenced for committing armed robberies. Desonier was sentenced to 117 months imprisonment and Leon was sentenced to 161 months, by U.S. District Court Judge Gordon J. Quist. Both men were ordered to pay restitution and will serve 3 years of supervised release after they are discharged from prison.

          Desonier and Leon were responsible for a string of crimes dating back to January 2019, when they broke into a home and stole a vehicle and a wallet. They went to the Cabela’s Sporting Goods Store in Grandville and used the ID and credit card of the victim to buy ammunition and accessories for pistols and attempted to buy an assault-type rifle, but were prevented due to the 3-day waiting period. In March 2019, they robbed Pancho’s Party Store in Grand Rapids. Leon entered the store and robbed the clerk, stealing cash and cigarettes, while brandishing a shortbarreled shotgun. Desonier waited outside and acted as the getaway driver. A week later, Desonier and Leon robbed the 911 Cash Store located in Wyoming, Michigan. This time, both men entered the store with Leon brandishing the short-barreled shotgun and Desonier had a revolver. They tied up the store clerks, stole cash, and took the recording device from the store security system.

          At sentencing, Judge Quist, expressed concern at the grave nature of the crimes and denied requests for leniency in imposing lengthy terms of custody for both men. Both Desonier and Leon had prior convictions that prohibited them from possessing firearms.

          In announcing the sentences, U.S. Attorney Birge stated, “Armed robbery is violent and dangerous. The risk of death, serious injury, and psychological harm are ever-present. My office has always and will continue to pursue those who violate federal prohibitions on possessing a firearm or who use a firearm in committing other federal crimes.”

          “Angel Leon and Chris Desonier used firearms and violence to further their criminal endeavors,” stated James Deir, ATF’s Special Agent in Charge of the Detroit Field Division. “It is my hope that the lengthy sentences they received sends a message that we as law enforcement, and we as a community, will not stand by and let violence be the norm. We will continue to work to hold those who use violence accountable.”

          This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Mekaru and investigated by the Grand Rapids Police, Wyoming Police, Allegan County Sheriff’s Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Updated September 2, 2020