Rochester Man Charged with Robbery and Gun Charges
ROCHESTER, NY—U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Johnny Blackshell, Jr., 21, Rochester, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with Hobbs Act robbery, carrying and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of seven years in prison, a maximum of life and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brett A. Harvey and Douglas E. Gregory, who are handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, on August 4, 2015, the Rochester Police Department was called to the 7-Eleven on Lake Avenue for a report of an armed robbery. Officers interviewed the employee on duty who locked herself inside the store office until they arrived. They also reviewed store security videos and determined that two black males entered the store at approximately 12:50 a.m. One of the suspects pointed a handgun at the employee’s head and told her to open the drawer or he would “blow her head off.” The suspects left the store with approximately $150 in cash and some cigars.
RPD evidence technicians subsequently processed the scene and recovered two fingerprints, one being a positive match to the defendant. In addition, the store employee picked Blackshell out of a photo lineup.
On August 24, 2015, RPD officers conducted a traffic stop of a gray/green Saturn on Route 490. The driver was identified as the defendant. Inside the car, officers recovered several clothing items that were determined to have been stolen from the Eastview Mall. A further search of the car revealed a handgun in the glove compartment. On August 25, 2015, the 7-Eleven employee who was robbed at gunpoint was shown photographs of the handgun found in the Saturn and stated to officers “I am sure that is the one that was pointed at me.”
The criminal complaint is the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid, New York Field Division, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Rochester Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael Ciminelli.
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.