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.

Defendant

Charges

Sentence

Thomas Lamarr Prince, 41, Anaheim

Found guilty by a jury on Oct. 18, 2017, of the following felony counts:

  • (4) Robbery

Sentencing Enhancement

  • 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

 



###