Susan Kang Schroeder,Chief of Staff Office:714-347-8408 Cell:714-292-2718
Michelle Van Der Linden,Spokesperson Office:714-347-8405 Cell:714-323-4486
Case # 17HF0430
Date: December 15, 2017
MAN SENTENCED TO 21 YEARS IN PRISON FOR ROBBING SEVERAL MARIJUANA DEALERS AT GUNPOINT DURING LARGE-SCALE DRUG DEALS AT NEWPORT COAST RESORT
SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man was sentenced to 21 years in state prison today for robbing several marijuana dealers at gunpoint during two large-scale drug deals at a resort in Newport Coast.
Thomas Lamarr Prince, 41, Anaheim
Found guilty by a jury on Oct. 18, 2017, of the following felony counts:
Prior strike conviction for robbery in Los Angeles in 2015
21 years in state prison
Circumstances of the Case
On Feb.18, 2017, and March 21, 2017, Prince met victims in a parking lot in Newport Coast to purchase large quantities of marijuana worth over $100,000.
On each occasion, the defendant drove the victims to a nearby resort to conduct the illegal exchange inside a private hotel villa.
Once inside the room, Prince robbed the victims at gunpoint and stole 60 pounds of marijuana and 90 pounds of marijuana, respectively, as well as the victims’ personal belongings.
The Newport Beach Police Department (NBPD) investigated this case after robbery victim John Doe’s family member reported him missing on Feb 18, 2017.
Two of John Doe’s associates, Steele Burnside and Nicholas Hernandez, are accused of holding the victim hostage in exchange for the $130,000 estimated value of the marijuana lost as a result of the robbery (Case # 17HF0244). They were arrested by NBPD on Feb 20, 2017.
NBPD identified Prince as the robbery suspect following the kidnapping investigation and arrested the defendant on March 29, 2017.
Prosecutor: Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Chrisopoulos, Special Prosecutions Unit