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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
Roger B. Handberg , United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Thursday, September 1, 2022

Federal Jury Finds Palmetto Man Guilty of Armed Robbery, Possessing a Firearm As a Convicted Felon, Contempt, and Extortion

Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that a federal jury today found Delon Adams (50, Palmetto) guilty of four counts of robbery, four counts of brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, possessing a firearm and ammunition as a convicted felon, extortion, and criminal contempt of court. Each robbery charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years’ imprisonment. Because Adams has a prior federal conviction for carrying a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking crime, each brandishing charge carries a minimum mandatory term of 25 years, and up to life, in federal prison, consecutive to any other term of imprisonment. The felon-in-possession charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. The extortion charge carries up to 2 years’ imprisonment. On the criminal contempt charge, Adams may be imprisoned for as long as the Honorable Virginia M. Hernandez Covington, United States District Judge, determines. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for November 17, 2022. Adams had been indicted on October 27, 2020.

According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, between August 26 and September 15, 2020, Adams robbed four wireless phone stores – three in Manatee County and one in Hillsborough County. During each robbery, he pointed a gun at store employees and stole iPhones and cash. Adams subsequently sold the stolen iPhones. Law enforcement officers arrested Adams on October 1, 2020, and found him in possession of a loaded handgun. Adams subsequently mailed a threatening communication to a witness in an attempt to obtain money and violated two court orders by refusing to be fingerprinted.

This case was investigated by the Strategic Pattern Armed Robbery Technical Apprehension (SPARTA) unit of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, and the Palmetto Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Diego F. Novaes and Christopher F. Murray.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

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