Release Date: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 4:25 p.m.
Harvey L. Bryant, Commonwealth’s Attorney for the City of Virginia Beach, announced today that Mason Montrell Thomas, 22 years old, previously residing in the 4100 block of Wales Drive in Virginia Beach, Virginia was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge William R. O’Brien on charges of Robbery, Carjacking, Abduction, Use of a Firearm, and Conspiracy. Judge O’Brien sentenced Thomas to 45 years in the Department of Corrections, then suspended 36 years, leaving nine (9) years to serve. The sentence was two (2) years below the recommended low end of the Virginia State Sentencing Guidelines. Thomas pled guilty on April 26, 2011.
Had this matter gone to trial, the Commonwealth’s evidence would have proved that just before 9:00 p.m. on December 10, 2010, Mason Montrell Thomas and two co-conspirators were driving around the Thalia Gardens apartment complex in a Chevrolet Impala looking for someone to rob. They spotted a man who had had just returned home from work and was getting some things out of his car. Thomas waited in the Impala as his co-defendants, wearing ski masks and latex gloves, approached the victim and forced him into the backseat of his car at gunpoint. They drove to the Wachovia Bank on Independence Blvd and ordered the victim to withdraw $500. The victim complied with their demands and handed over the cash. Thomas had been following in the Impala. The armed men disabled the victim’s cell phone before fleeing and jumping in the car driven by Thomas. The victim stopped at nearby Wendy’s and called the police.
Officers canvassed the area and conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle which matched the description of the Impala used as the get-away car. All three men were inside, as well as a ski mask, latex gloves, and $500 cash. A loaded magazine and a black handgun matching the description of the gun used in the carjacking were found on the ground nearby.
When questioned by detectives with the Virginia Beach Police Department, Thomas’ co-defendants admitted their roles in the crimes. They also pleaded guilty to charges of Robbery, Carjacking, Abduction, Use of a Firearm, and Conspiracy and are scheduled to be sentenced on October 11, 2011.
Associate Commonwealth’s Attorney Michael D. Defricke prosecuted the case. Please call Macie Pridgen if additional information is desired.