Taco Bell robber faces September sentencing

By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers

LINCOLN PARK — A 25-year-old man with two prior felony convictions will go back to prison after he pleaded guilty to seven counts of armed robbery for a series of fast-food holdups last fall.

Thomas Maurice Davis, 25, had been scheduled for a jury trial this week but instead entered guilty pleas on Aug. 6 before Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Ulysses W. Boykin. Davis had been charged in three separate robberies of Taco Bell, 2306 Dix-Toledo, each carrying multiple armed robbery and weapons charges. The same restaurant near where Davis lived had been robbed three times in November and December 2012.

Wayne County Assistant Prosecutor Maria Miller said felony armed robbery is punishable by “any term of years up to life in prison.”

Davis first robbed the Taco Bell in early November. According to police reports Davis entered the restaurant, pointed a shotgun at employees, demanded cash and fired a shot into the ceiling.

He left with an undisclosed amount of cash and was seen riding a bicycle away from Dix-Toledo and into a residential neighborhood.

The same restaurant was targeted in similar fashion in late November and again in early December, when a man wearing a mask and knit cap implied that he had a weapon.

Davis lived less than a mile away from the restaurant, and investigators followed a trail of evidence that included clothing worn during the robberies that had been discarded in bushes and back yards.

Davis’ sentence will mark his third felony conviction dating back to an assault charge in 2005.

The pleas were entered during what was to be the final pre-trial conference, which had awaited the results of two separate competency exams ordered by both the 25th District Court and Boykin, which resulted in Davis being declared able to understand the charges against him and participate in his defense.

Davis is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 3.

(James Mitchell can be reached at jmitchell@bewickpublications.com.)