Final Man in Four-Member Conspiracy Pleads Guilty
HOUSTON—With the guilty plea of the final defendant today, a total of four men have now been convicted for their participation in a robbery crew that committed more than 30 different armed robberies throughout Houston, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson.
Jerrol Bluford, 22, entered his guilty plea today, while co-conspirators Calvin Smith, 19, Jamone Jones, 21, and Rodney Ford, 18, had previously entered guilty pleas Aug. 28, Oct. 26, and Nov. 4, 2015, respectively.
Between Jan. 9, 2015, and Jan. 25, 2015, the four men committed approximately 31 armed robberies of a variety of establishments, including restaurants, stores and phone companies. During each robbery, at least one member of the crew brandished a weapon against both store employees and customers.
Bluford pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to interference with commerce by robbery and two counts of brandishing a weapon during a commercial robbery. He faces up to 20 years for the conspiracy and a possible $250,000 maximum fine. For the first count of brandishing a weapon, he faces an additional mandatory seven years which must be served consecutively to the underlying conspiracy. The second conviction of brandishing a weapon carries a 25-year mandatory term which also must be served consecutively to the other sentences. Smith, Jones and Ford all also pleaded to the same charges and face the same penalties.
U.S. District Judge David Hittner has set sentencing for Feb. 16, 2016. All of the defendants have been and will remain in custody pending their sentencing hearing.
These charges arose from an investigation conducted by the FBI, Harris County Sherriff’s Office and Houston Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Searle is prosecuting the case.