For Immediate Release
Minneapolis Man Sentenced to Over Seven Years in Prison for Violent Armed Robbery Spree of Minneapolis Businesses
MINNEAPOLIS – A Minneapolis man was sentenced to 88 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for his role in three armed robberies of Minneapolis businesses, announced United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger.
According to court documents, on March 31, 2022, Matthew Dereck Howell, 23, entered Dollar City Plus, a retail store in Minneapolis, while an unidentified co-conspirator waited outside as a lookout. Howell pulled a handgun and aimed it at the store owner who was behind the counter and demanded money from the register. As Howell was ordering the employees to move faster, he fired the gun in the direction of the store owner causing a bullet to graze the store owner's neck. After firing the shot, Howell went behind the counter, opened the register, and took approximately $1,200. Howell left the store and fled on foot.
A few days later, on April 3, 2022, Howell borrowed a white Cadillac sedan to drive to Sam's Market and Meat, located in Minneapolis. Howell entered the market and approached the counter as if to pay for an item. Howell pulled out a black handgun and pointed it at the clerk, demanded money from the cash register, and threatened to shoot. Howell reached over the counter into the register and took approximately $50. Howell then fled back to the Cadillac and drove away.
Later that same day, Howell entered Minneapolis Market, approached the counter, pulled out a handgun and pointed it at an employee, and demanded money from the register. Howell then reached over the counter and took approximately $700 before fleeing.
Howell was sentenced today in U.S. District Court before Judge Katherine M. Menendez. On November 8, 2022, he pleaded guilty to two counts of Hobbs Act robbery.
This case was the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Minneapolis Police Department.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura M. Provinzino and former Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah E. Hudleston prosecuted the case.