A Silver Spring man was sentenced on Tuesday to seven years in prison after for his part in an armed robbery at a Takoma Park jewelry store nearly two years ago.
Ever Ramiro Torres-Enriquez, 25, was sentenced Tuesday for stealing, with another man, more than 400 pieces of jewelry worth more than $167,000 from a Takoma Park jewelry store, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office on Wednesday.
They also took more than $7,900 in cash, a U.S. Attorney’s Office press release said.
The jewelry store is not identified.
Torres-Enriquez went into the store on Feb. 16, 2019, and pretended to look for jewelry for his girlfriend, according to his plea agreement.
Then, Douglas Amilcar-Vasquez went into the store with a handgun and demanded cash and jewelry, according to the press release. Torres-Enriquez pulled out a rifle from under his clothing and pointed it at people in the store, demanding money and jewelry.
Torres-Enriquez and Amilcar-Vasquez together took more than $7,900 in cash and more than 400 pieces of jewelry worth $167,067.11, then stole a vehicle from two males and drove away, according to the press release. The vehicle was later recovered.
Torres-Enriquez later pawned some of the jewelry and received $630, according to the press release. He was arrested on June 14, 2019.
Torres-Enriquez’s attorney — Christopher Nieto of the Baltimore-based Nieto Law Office — told Bethesda Beat Wednesday afternoon that his client pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy to commit robbery and brandishing a firearm.
The minimum sentence for the brandishing a firearm charge is seven years in prison. Nieto said he and the prosecutors negotiated the sentence.
Nieto explained that seven years and one day is actually the lowest possible sentence, because any prison time Torres-Enriquez received for the conspiracy charge would run consecutively to the firearm sentence.
Nieto said Torres-Enriquez was not the “mastermind” behind the robbery, and that might have been a contributing factor to the lower sentence.
“The government and the court understood that what he did was wrong … [and that] his co-defendant sort of forced him into it,” he said.
Asked why the case went to federal court, Nieto said he wasn’t certain. He said the case had been transferred from Montgomery County’s jurisdiction.
He said it’s possible that federal authorities might have gotten involved because Amilcar-Vasquez had been charged with other robberies, and also because the guns and jewelry were manufactured in other places.
Attorney Daniel Gardner, representing the government, referred questions about the case to Marcy Murphy, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Murphy wrote in an email to Bethesda Beat that as a policy, the office does not “discuss charging decisions related to any particular case.”
“In general, we cooperate and consult with local prosecutors to determine the most appropriate venue for each defendant based on the facts of the case,” she wrote.
As part of his sentence, Torres-Enriquez also was put on three years of supervised release and he must pay $174,967 in restitution, according to the press release.
Amilcar-Vasquez, who had previously pleaded guilty to the Takoma Park robbery, is scheduled to be sentenced on March 16.
Dan Schere can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org