Duane James, 53 of Germantown was sentenced to 151 months, or a little over 12 and half years, in prison for five counts of robbery on Monday, Aug. 18 by Chief U.S. District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow.
According to his plea agreement, on seven occasions from January 21 to February 17, 2013, James robbed Maryland businesses and their employees, each time wearing a ski mask and pointing what appeared to be a gun at the store clerks.
In Silver Spring, James stole $50 and $10,000 worth of jewelry at The Gold Spot store; $110 from the store register and $100 from the clerk’s wallet at the AT&T store; and $3,000 from the cash drawer and lottery proceeds at the Bel Pre Beer & Wine store.
In Rockville, James, of the 18600 block Mustard Seed Court in Germantown, stole $1,500 from the register at the Shell Gas Station. In Gaithersburg, James stole $400 from the store register and $5 from the clerk at the Walnut Hill Liberty Gas Station; $300 from the cash register and $200 from the clerk at Twinbrook Shell Gas Station; and $1,043 from the register and cigarettes at the Exxon Gas Station.
Also, on February 17, 2013 and prior to robbing the Exxon gas station that same day, James pointed what appeared to be a gun at a clerk at a take-out restaurant in Gaithersburg, demanding cash from the register. The clerk did not move or open the drawer. James left the store.
James was arrested later that day, after a Montgomery County Police officer observed a vehicle fail to stop at a stop sign at the intersection of Christopher Avenue and Hellingly Place. The officer conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle and recognized the driver as matching the suspect description for the robberies. Based on surveillance video obtained from the robbery locations and evidence located in the vehicle, including a handgun, the suspect was placed under arrest for the earlier robberies.
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Acting Special Agent in Charge William P. McMullan of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - Baltimore Field Division; and Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department.