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Aggravated robber sentenced to prison

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A 19-year-old man has been sentenced to four years and 11 months in prison for an aggravated robbery that occurred at Neil Avenue and W. 8th Avenue last November.

The robbery added to a string of assaults, muggings and robberies that occurred on Ohio State’s campus last fall. Levi McNair, 19, pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery and attempted receiving stolen property after OSU Police arrested him on Dec. 10. He was sentenced May 1.

Emily Huddleston, public defender representing McNair, was not immediately available for comment Tuesday evening.

Another 14-year-old was taken into custody on Dec. 10 and arrested in connection with the Nov. 15 robbery.

The victim is a graduate teaching associate at OSU, and he declined to comment.

According to the Timely Warning Crime Alert OSU Police sent out on Nov. 15, the robbery occurred at about 7:14 p.m. and it contained a description of the two males.

“The suspects were two African-American males under 20 years of age. Both suspects were approximately 6 feet tall with a thin build,” the alert states.

The alert said the suspects forcibly removed property from the victim, while implying they had a gun. According to the University police report, the victim’s Dell laptop, his cell phone and a computer mouse were taken during the incident. The laptop was valued at $1,400, his cell phone at $300 and the mouse at $25.

University Police detective Pete Dragonette said the victim did not get any of his electronics returned, however his cell phone did play a role in tracking McNair down.

Dragonette said McNair used the victim’s cell phone after he had taken it on Nov. 15 to make calls and send text messages. The victim had reported his phone stolen to his phone company and had noticed that the phone was still in use after he had it taken, so he obtained those records and turned them over to police.

“From there we were able to identify who was called right after the robbery,” Dragonette said. “And we identified one of his friends that he had called after the robbery.”

Dragonette said University Police then interviewed his female friend. Dragonette said although she would not say the call was directly from McNair, she said the only person she recalled talking to that day was McNair.

“We had recognized the name Levi McNair because during the time, we were working closely with Columbus Police due to all the activity on campus, and we recognized him as someone who had recently been arrested,” Dragonette said. “So we knew we were on to something.”

Columbus Division of Police had arrested McNair earlier for stealing a cell phone from a store on High Street, Dragonette said.

Dragonette said Columbus Police had recognized McNair due to the fluorescent orange color of his tennis shoes, one that coincidentally matched up with the details from the robbery one block from OSU’s campus.

“We tried to go down to the Franklin County Jail in hopes of interviewing him,” Dragonette said. “But he chose to decline and not to talk with us.”

From there, University Police returned back to the phone records the victim provided for them, and recognized a group of names.

They contacted them in hopes of getting information about McNair.

“That group of acquaintances said McNair and the juvenile had stopped at their house before they had said they were going to campus to get some money, which means they were going to rob somebody,” Dragonette said.

McNair’s group of friends were apparently upset with McNair because they had suspected he had stolen property from them, Dragonette said.

“We talked with the second group, and they had said McNair and the juvenile came back to that same house after the robbery and had the stolen electronics,” Dragonette said. “Once we had all that, we were able to file warrants for McNair and the juvenile.”

Dragonette said McNair and the juvenile ended up confessing to the robbery after they were brought in.

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