For Immediate Release
Andrew Ford Sentenced to Federal Prison for Role in Crime Wave
FARGO - U. S. Attorney Christopher C. Myers announced that on April 19, 2016, Andrew Jerome Ford, 28, Fargo, ND, was sentenced before U. S. District Judge Ralph R. Erickson to serve eight (8) years and six (6) months in prison for Interference with the Commerce by Threats and Violence- Hobbs Act Robbery and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Crime of Violence. Judge Erickson also sentenced Ford to serve three (3) years of supervised release and required him to pay a $200 special assessment to the Crime Victims’ Fund.
On September 28, 2015, Bottle Barn Wine and Liquor, 2515 South University Dr., Fargo, and The Spirit Shop Liquor Store, 1404 33rd St. S., Fargo, were robbed within an hour of each other. Co-defendant Carlos Bethel pled guilty to robbing Bottle Barn while brandishing a firearm, while Ford pled guilty to possessing a firearm while robbing the Spirt Shop. Both men acknowledged being the getaway driver for one another in the robberies.
As part of the plea agreement Ford acknowledged he participated or aided and abetted the following crimes:
(a) A home invasion on June 24, 2015, in Hillsboro, North Dakota, where currency was stolen;
(b) A burglary resulting in a stolen firearm in Hillsboro in or about July through September 2015;
(c) A burglary of a vehicle in Fargo, North Dakota, in which monetary instruments were stolen on or about August 24, 2015, and on or about September 24, 2015;
(d) A burglary of a residence in Fargo, resulting in the theft of five firearms on or about September 24, 2015;
(e) Setting fire to four dumpsters in Fargo in an effort to determine law enforcement response time on or about September 28, 2015, as well as robbery of The Spirit Shop Liquor Store in Fargo;
(f) The pistol whipping assault of a victim by Carlos Bethel resulting in serious bodily injury including unconsciousness on or about September 19, 2015 in Fargo; and,
(g) Conspiracy to distribute marijuana in North Dakota.
U.S. Attorney Chris Myers noted after the sentencing: "This sentence sends a strong message that violent crime will not be tolerated in Fargo, Hillsboro, or any community we serve and will use all tools available to fight violent crime and the illegal use and possession of firearms. This case is another great example of local, state, and federal partners joining together to solve what can be best described as a wave of criminal activity that started last summer in the Red River Valley."
Co-defendant Carlos Bethel is scheduled to be sentenced April 25, 2016, at 2:15 PM, in U. S. District Court, Fargo, ND.
This case was investigated by the Fargo Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATFE).
U. S. Attorney Christopher C. Myers prosecuted the case.