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United States v. Roba

United States District Court, District of Columbia

July 17, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
OLONA ROBA, Defendant.

          DETENTION MEMORANDUM

          G. MICHAEL HARVEY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter comes before the Court upon the application of the United States that Defendant, Olona Roba (“Roba”), be detained pending trial pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §§ 3142(f)(1)(A), (f)(1)(D), and (f)(1)(E). Roba has been charged by Indictment with: one count of armed robbery, in violation of D.C. Code §§ 22-2801 and 22-4502; one count of possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence, in violation of D.C. Code § 22-4504(b); two counts of interference with interstate commerce by robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951; and two counts of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(ii). The Court held a detention hearing for Roba and Co-Defendant, Jarvell Kent (“Kent”), on July 12, 2017.

         Upon consideration of the proffers and arguments of counsel and the entire record herein, the Court ordered Roba held without bail pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3142(e). This memorandum is submitted in compliance with the statutory obligation that “the judicial officer shall . . . include written findings of fact and a written statement of the reasons for the detention.” 18 U.S.C. § 3142(i)(1). The findings of fact and statements of reasons in support of the Order of Detention follow.

         FINDINGS OF FACT

         At the detention hearing, the United States proceeded by proffer based on the Indictment. The defense offered no contrary evidence on the merits of the offense, nor challenged any aspect of the government's factual proffer. Accordingly, the Court makes the following findings of fact regarding the government's investigation.

         A. The May 4, 2017 Armed Robbery

         Roba's current charges stem from a string of robberies, the first of which occurred on May 4, 2017. That morning, the Metropolitan Police Department (“MPD”) received a complaint of an armed robbery that occurred near the Capitol Heights Metro Station. The complainant told MPD officers that two individuals accosted him after he left the metro station. One of the individuals charged the complainant and told him that he wanted the complainant's money, while the second individual-later identified as Roba-pulled out what the complainant described as a Mac-10 with an extended magazine from his backpack and pointed it at him. The complainant turned over his wallet and cell phone while the second individual brandished the firearm, and then watched as the two individuals walked away in the direction of a nearby apartment complex located on the 5900 block of Southern Avenue. The complainant described the armed individual to MPD officers as being a black male with a slim build, a goatee, and shoulder length dreadlocks. According to the complainant, he was also wearing a black bandana and a neon green jacket and carrying a black backpack.

         MPD officers then showed the complainant a nine-person photo array containing a photograph of Roba and asked him to identify the armed individual involved in the robbery. The complainant was unable to choose one and instead selected three photographs-one of which was a photograph of Roba-that he said looked “[c]losest” to the individual. Additionally, as part of its investigation, MPD spoke to two witnesses. The first witness indicated that they were in the area at the time of the robbery and saw three individuals, one of whom they knew to be Roba. The witness said that they saw Roba wearing a black hoodie with a green article of clothing over it while entering an apartment located at 5930 Southern Avenue. According to this first witness, Roba regularly visited this residence and, shortly after he entered it that day, left in a different set of clothing. The second witness was also in the area at the time of the armed robbery and said that they saw Roba-who the witness knows by the name “Country”-acting suspiciously with two other individuals near that same apartment complex. When MPD showed the witness a photograph of Roba, the witness identified him as “Country” and said that they do not know his real name.

         During the course of its investigation into this incident, MPD learned that someone attempted to use the complainant's debit card at a store thirteen minutes after the complainant reported the robbery. The store, which is located approximately three blocks from where the complainant was robbed, provided MPD with a copy of its video surveillance from that day. In the video, Roba can be seen entering the store in a black shirt with a white symbol and a pair of red and black basketball shoes. After entering, he attempts to make a purchase using the complainant's debit card.

         B. The May 5, 2017 Armed Robbery

         Late the next day, MPD received a report of an armed robbery that occurred at the 7-Eleven convenience store located at 3218 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, Washington, D.C. An MPD detective arrived at the location and viewed a security video that shows two black males entering the store in dark clothes and masks. The first individual-later identified as Roba-can be seen in the video wearing a puffy jacket, a black shirt with a white symbol identical to the shirt worn by Roba in the store surveillance video from May 4, 2017, bright green gloves, dark pants, and grey and purple basketball shoes. The individual is also wearing a black mask that leaves part of his nose, cheeks, and eyes exposed, and carrying a black sub-machine gun with a curved extended magazine. The second individual in the video-later identified as Kent-can be seen wearing a black jacket with a hood, black gloves, black shoes with a white symbol and white soles, and a black mask that leaves part of his nose, cheek, and eyes exposed. The video shows the two individuals enter the store and approach the cash register. The individuals then order the store clerk to open the cash register, remove an unknown amount of cash, and flee. MPD officers obtained a copy of this video and posted it on MPD's YouTube page, hoping to solicit leads.

         C. The May 11, 2017 Armed Robbery

         Less than a week later, in the early morning of May 11, 2017, MPD received a report of an armed robbery at another 7-Eleven convenience store, this one located at 4443 Benning Road NE, Washington, D.C. An MPD detective arrived at the location and viewed the store's security footage of the robbery. In the video, the detective observed two males enter the store wearing dark clothing, gloves, and masks. The first individual is wearing a black shirt and dark pants, as well as bright green gloves and a black mask similar to the gloves and mask that Roba can be seen wearing in the video of the May 5, 2017 robbery. This individual is also wearing red and black basketball shoes similar to the shoes worn by Roba on May 4, 2017, and is carrying a black semiautomatic handgun. The second individual is wearing clothes similar to those worn by Kent during the May 5, 2017 robbery-including a black shirt, a mask, and black shoes with a white symbol and white soles-and is carrying a semi-automatic firearm resembling a Tec 9 with a curved extended magazine. This second individual is also wearing a puffy jacket similar to the jacket worn by the armed individual-later identified as Roba-during the May 5, 2017 robbery.

         D. ...


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