Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced that Thomas Sanchez (age 26), of Providence, was sentenced on Tuesday by Superior Court Justice Francis Darigan (Ret.) to 30 years with 20 years to serve and the remainder suspended with probation for multiple counts of first degree robbery and conspiracy. Sanchez was found guilty by a jury after a trial in May.
During the trial, the State proved that during the night between February 15, 2014 and February 16, 2014, co-conspirator Maria Rojas, (age 28) of Pawtucket, lured two individuals to her apartment under the auspices of having an after-hours party with the intent to rob them with the help of the defendant and co- conspirators Julian Diaz, (age 21) of Pawtucket, and Christopher Xavier, (age 32) of Providence. Once everyone was in the apartment, Sanchez brandished a firearm, later determined to be a BB gun, demanding the victims turn over their cash, phones and jewelry. He also assaulted one of the victims with the BB gun.
During the robbery, one of the victims asked the group if they could let him keep a cell phone he used solely for his employment. The robbers agreed, handed the cell phone to the victim, and let them leave the apartment. Once the victims left, they called E-911 to report the robbery.
As the defendants were getting into a motor vehicle outside the apartment, the Pawtucket Police arrived on scene. Sanchez fled the vehicle. Police followed his tracks in the snow and found him under the deck of a nearby home, where he had in his possession various items belonging to the victims of the robbery.
Co-conspirators Diaz and Xavier pleaded guilty to first degree robbery and conspiracy in April and June of 2015 respectively and were sentenced to 30 years with 10 to serve. An arrest warrant has been issued for Rojas who failed to appear for a court date on July 24, 2015.
"The quick response by the Pawtucket Police led to the swift capture of the defendants and return of the victims' possessions," said Attorney General Kilmartin.
Pawtucket Police Detective Donti Rosciti (Ret.) led the investigation. Special Assistant Attorneys General Daniel Griffin and Arthur DeFelice prosecuted the case on behalf of the Office of Attorney General.