Missouri man faces 14-years in prison after pleading guilty to armed robberies

A Missouri man pleaded guilty in federal court to the robberies (and attempted robberies) of five companies.

Joshua A. West, 28, of Overland Park, Kansas, pleaded guilty to U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs.

When West pleaded guilty, he admitted that on July 17, 2018, he robbed the CVS pharmacy at 6300 Prospect Ave., Kansas City, Missouri. When West passed the counter, the cashier, who believed he was armed, opened the cash drawer. West took all the money and left the shop. Investigators posted a bulletin with a photo of surveillance footage and received a notice identifying West, who was on parole at the time.

West also admitted that he used a gun to rob the Sprint store at 4902 N. Oak Trafficway, Kansas City, MO on August 10, 2018. West forced an employee to open the locked cabinets behind the counter so he could take everything with him – the iPhones, Apple Watches, and Samsung S-9 phones.

The next day, August 11, 2018, West robbed the phone booth at 6392 Troost Avenue in Kansas City, Missouri, at gunpoint. West forced two employees to be on site and then stole phones and cash from the cash register.

On August 15, 2018, a manager of a T-Mobile store posted a photo of West to all store managers in the metropolitan area. On the same day, the manager of a T-Mobile store at 12400 S. US Hwy. 71, Grandview, Mo., spotted West in the parking lot in front of the store. Because he was alerted, the manager locked the door. West tried to open the door, then pointed an outside gun at the manager for a few seconds before walking away.

Immediately thereafter, West entered the nearby AT&T store on 12346 US Hwy. 71, Grandview, Mo. West pulled out a gun and ordered staff to give him all iPhones. West ordered the two employees and a customer into a back room. Another customer stayed in the main showroom and ran out of the store after West went into the back room. This customer called 911. In the back room, an employee opened a cabinet with all the iPhones. West ordered them to go down and put the phones in a plastic bag.

West left the back room and went back through the main showroom. Before he could get to the front door, however, two Grandview police officers confronted him in the main showroom. West tried to run through the back room, but the door was locked behind him. The officers ordered West to get on the ground, but he refused and a fight ensued. During the fight, a 9mm bull gun fell from West’s Bund. More officers came and took West into custody.

Under federal law, West is sentenced to a prison sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole for each of the robberies, as well as to a consecutive prison term of at least 14 years in federal prison without parole up to a life sentence in federal prison without parole for the firearm allegations. The maximum legal sentence is prescribed by Congress and is included here for informational purposes, as the conviction of the accused is determined by the court based on the Guidelines for Advisory Convictions and other legal factors. A trial will be scheduled upon completion of an investigation into the present by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by US assistant attorney Jeffrey Q. McCarther. It has been investigated by the Kansas City, Mo., Grandview, Mo. Police Department, the Police Department and the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Bureau.

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