4 facing federal robbery, gun charges awaiting arraignment - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

4 facing federal robbery, gun charges awaiting arraignment

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JACKSONVILLE (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Four Jacksonville men accused of being a part of a violent armed robbery gang are scheduled for arraignment today in federal court, according to a spokeswoman with the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Texas.

The men — Jonathan Roshard Brown, 21; Maurice Deshun Jones, 30; Willie Duane Rogers, 24; and Michael Dangelio Johnson, 25 — are charged with conspiracy, according to a news release. Jones also is charged with being in possession of a firearm by a felon, robbery and brandishing a firearm during a violent crime.

Brown, Rogers, also known as "Willie Beamin," and Johnson, also known as "Mike Geezy" also are charged with robbery and brandishing a firearm during a violent crime. Additionally, Rogers is charged with obstruction of a criminal investigation, according to a news release.

Davilyn Walston, public information officer for the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Texas, said each could face a minimum of 25 years in prison if convicted.
She said the men are not only accused of breaking the law but also affecting commerce.

According to the 17-page indictment, which was filed April 24, the four men "conspired with each other and with others … and did unlawfully obstruct, delay and affect commerce and the movement of any article and commodity in commerce."

The purpose, the indictment states, was to get money by robbing agents and employees of businesses. According to the indictment, the men planned robberies and then "divided and shared in the proceeds."

The men would conduct surveillance to see when victims might be most vulnerable and have the most money, according to the indictment.
One of the robberies happened on Oct. 2, 2011 at the Walmart on South Jackson Street in Jacksonville.

Five individuals arrived in a silver vehicle and entered the store, and everyone but Brown went back to the car, Jacksonville Police Detective Greg Compton said.

Compton said at the time that Brown continued to walk around the checkout and bakery area, where he saw an employee emptying the cash register as part of her job. Brown then ran to the cash register where the employee was, grabbed bags with money in them and headed for the front door, he said.

Once he was in the glass area by the front door, Brown fell and hit his head on a shopping cart, Compton said. In the meantime, the silver vehicle pulled up to the crosswalk, and Rogers ran to the front door to check on the progress of the theft, he said.

Compton said Rogers then ran back to the car, which sped off.

As Brown exited the store, the car traveled to the south end of the parking lot, where it picked Brown up and left the scene. Brown was able to get out of the store with about $9,500, Compton said.

"I think this was really and truly a crime of opportunity they thought they could get away with, but our patrol officers did a great job of locating the suspect vehicle (later that night)," Compton said at the time.

Other incidents include a traffic stop in May 2012, when Jones was arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm, and Rogers was arrested for driving without a valid driver license, as well as the November 2012 robbery of the Razorback Grocery, which cost the store about $16,000 and at least $6,900 in Texas lottery tickets, according to the indictment.

The owner of Razorback Grocery also was robbed later in November 2012 when she was trying to make a commercial deposit at the Austin Bank drive-thru on West Commerce Street, the indictment states. Brown brandished and fired a firearm, and the bullet "passed through the victim's hand, throat and shoulder," according to the indictment. The victim was taken to the hospital and made it through, the indictment reads. However, Razorback Grocery closed, and Austin Bank temporarily closed after the incident.

According to the indictment in late November 2012, Brown, Jones "and others" attempted to rob the owner of Fast Fuel on South Jackson Street, and in March this year,

Rogers "attempted to influence the statements of a witness in the investigation."

Jones was arrested this month near Bullard, while Rogers was arrested this month in Jacksonville. Brown and Johnson remained in the Cherokee County Jail Tuesday afternoon.

Jacksonville Police Chief Reece Daniel said in the last two years, his department has worked with other agencies to take 37 people off the streets and get them into the federal court system for alleged crimes.

He said there's always a fear when people hear about these kinds of cases, but he believes knowing that the individuals have been arrested helps improve the quality of life.
Additionally, he said his investigators have spent long days and weekends and time away from their families to do their work.

"It's very gratifying to see them put that much into a case because they knew we needed to get them indicted and arrested," Daniel said.

He said other friends and associates of the four individuals could be arrested in the future.

According to a news release, the FBI East Texas Gang Initiative and Jacksonville Police Department are investigating with assistance from the Cherokee County District Attorney's Office.

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