U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
Eastern District of Virginia
For Immediate Release
January 30, 2009
Dana Boente, Acting United States Attorney
Contact: Peter Carr, Public Information Office
(703) 549-5202 (fax)
D.C. Residents Sentenced in Series of Armed Robberies in Virginia, Maryland
(Alexandria, Va.) — Michael Gray, age 47, and his nephew, Dante Lorenzo Gray, age 22, both residents of Washington, D.C., were sentenced in U.S. District Court on charges arising from their commission of 19 armed robberies of retail businesses in Fairfax County and Alexandria, Va., and Prince George’s County, Md. Dante Gray was sentenced to 144 months on January 23, 2009, and Michael Gray was sentenced to life in prison on January 30, 2009. U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee sentenced both men.
Dana J. Boente, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Edgar A. Domenech, Special Agent in Charge for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF); David Baker, Alexandria Chief of Police; David M. Rohrer, Fairfax County Chief of Police; and Roberto Hylton, Acting Prince George7rsquo;s County Chief of Police made the announcement.
According to court documents filed in the two cases, they began their spree with the robbery of an auto parts store in Falls Church, Va., on October 31, 2006. Between that date and January 27, 2007, they robbed six auto parts stores, five dollar stores, two shoe stores and a service station, pharmacy, video rental store, toy store, electronics store and Sears store. In each case their method was the same: They would enter the store appearing to be legitimate customers and by various means induce the clerk to open the cash register. Michael Gray would then produce a 4-barrel derringer type pistol to intimidate the clerk and any customers who were nearby, and Dante Gray would take the money.
On October 23, 2008, Dante Gray pleaded guilty to conspiracy and robbery charges, and agreed to cooperate against his uncle. Michael Gray pleaded not guilty and went to trial on November 3, 2008, but on the third day of trial, after the testimony of the victims of 10 of the robberies, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy and firearm charges.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, and the police departments of Fairfax County and Alexandria, Va., and Prince George7rsquo;s County, Md. Assistant United States Attorneys Michael E. Rich and Stephanie Bibighaus Hammerstrom and Special Assistant Stephanie Flemming prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/vae. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.uspci.uscourts.gov.