U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
Middle District of Florida
Middle District of Florida
For Immediate Release
May 20, 2014
A. Lee Bentley, III, United States Attorney
Contact: William Daniels
Commercial Armed Robbers Arrested in Multi-Agency Investigation
Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces that Shamorcus Brandan Nesbitt (27, Tampa) and England Alexander Wilson (32, Tampa) have been charged in a criminal complaint with conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, interference with commerce by robbery, and brandishing a firearm during and in relation to and in furtherance of a crime of violence. If convicted, each faces a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment for each robbery, and mandatory minimum consecutive sentences of 7 years, up to life imprisonment for each related firearms offenses.
After being arrested on May 20, 2014, Nesbitt and Wilson made their initial appearances in federal court, before United States Magistrate Judge Thomas B. McCoun, III in Tampa. They were detained pending further proceedings.
According to the criminal complaint, multiple law enforcement agencies have been investigating a series of 19 commercial armed robberies that have occurred in the Tampa Bay area between December 2013 and May 20, 2014. The robberies were unique in that they occurred around closing time and that the robbers would smash the stores’ glass with a brick or rock to gain access to the store. Once inside the store, the robbers would hold the employees at gunpoint, while demanding money. Based on the patterns of the armed robberies, investigators identified Nesbitt and Wilson as the potential perpetrators and identified the vehicles that they were believed to be using to commit the robberies. At approximately 12:40 a.m. on May 20, 2014, Nesbitt and Wilson used one of those vehicles to commit an armed robbery of a pizza chain on West Waters Avenue in Tampa. Further investigation led law enforcement to Nesbitt’s residence, in Tampa, where both individuals were ultimately taken into custody.
A criminal complaint is merely an informal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case is a joint investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco of Firearms & Explosives, the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office, Hernando County Sheriff’s Office, Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, and the Tampa Police Department. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Josephine W. Thomas.