Defendant and His Armed Co-Conspirator Stole Thousands of Dollars’ Worth of Opioids
Baltimore, Maryland – Arthur Raymond Prince, age 19, of Laurel Maryland, pleaded guilty today to aiding and abetting robbery involving controlled substances, and aiding and abetting the brandishing of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, in connection with the armed robberies of five pharmacies.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Chief Henry P. Stawinski III of the Prince George’s County Police Department; Annapolis Police Chief Scott Baker; Anne Arundel County Police Chief Tim Altomare; Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department; Chief Gary Gardner of the Howard County Police Department; and Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney Wes Adams.
According to Prince’s plea agreement, between May 5, and November 29, 2017, Prince participated in five armed robberies of pharmacies. In each robbery, Prince’s co-conspirator pointed a gun at the clerk and Prince and the co-conspirator demanded opioid narcotics such as Oxycodone, OxyContin, Percocet, and Codeine. In most of the robberies, Prince and the co-conspirator also stole money from the cash register and/or robbed the clerk.
Specifically, Prince admitted that he robbed: the Howard Pharmacy in Columbia, Maryland on May 5, 2017; the Lorven Pharmacy in Laurel Maryland on June 19, 2017; the Pasadena Pharmacy in Pasadena, Maryland on August 25, 2017; and the Annapolis Professional Pharmacy in Annapolis, Maryland on November 29, 2017. Prince also attempted to rob the Pace Wellness Pharmacy in Pasadena on August 25, 2017, but was not able to steal narcotics when the clerk didn’t know where the drug were located. Instead, Prince and his co-conspirator stole $180 from the cash register and robbed the clerk of her purse, which contained $50 and credit cards, among other things.
In each robbery, cell site records showed that Prince’s phone was in the immediate area of the pharmacy at the time of the robbery, and his fingerprints were found on a stolen vehicle used as a getaway car after the Pasadena robberies. In addition, law enforcement recovered photos and images of Prince handling weapons; photos of Prince, who is unemployed, holding large amounts of money; and text messages between Prince and his co-conspirator.
Prince was arrested after the robbery on November 29, 2017, in Odenton, Maryland, not far from where law enforcement located the stolen narcotics. After his arrest and while he was detained, Prince attempted to obstruct justice. After learning that his girlfriend was scheduled to testify before a federal grand jury, Prince coached her regarding her testimony, telling her in a recorded jail call, “you don’t know nothing, nobody, OK? Get that through your fxxxing skull. Get that through your melon, OK? Nada.”
Prince faces a maximum of 25 years in prison for aiding and abetting robbery involving controlled substances; and a mandatory minimum of seven years and up to life in prison for aiding and abetting the brandishing of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence. Chief U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar has scheduled sentencing for April 9, 2018 at 10 a.m.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally based strategies to reduce violent crime.
United States Attorney Robert K. Hur commended the FBI, the Prince George’s County Police Department, the Annapolis Police Department, the Anne Arundel County Police Department, the Montgomery County Police Department, the Howard County Police Department, and the Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation. Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Paul A. Riley and Brandon K. Moore, who are prosecuting the case.
SOURCE: news provided by JUSTICE.GOV on Tuesday, November 13, 2018.