2011-12-30 / Top Stories

FR Jewelry Store Heister Convicted

By Howard Schwach

Picture of robbers supplied by the 101 Precinct. Picture of robbers supplied by the 101 Precinct. Following a two-week trial, a federal jury has convicted two South Ozone Park cousins, who led a violent robbery crew, on charges that they held up a Far Rockaway jewelry store, a post office and six banks located throughout Queens and Long Island.

The defendants, identified by federal law enforcement sources as Sharod Williams, 39, and Travis Walker, 24, were convicted on all counts of a 15- count indictment, including the November 28, 2009 armed robbery of a jewelry store in Far Rockaway.

On that day, federal agents said, Williams and other crew members carried out a daytime armed robbery of the Gold Fashion Jewelry Store in Far Rockaway. During the robbery, Williams and another member of his crew physically assaulted and handcuffed the elderly store owner.

When the store owner attempted to escape, Williams threw him to the ground, and, while kneeling on the victim’s neck, directed a crew member to take jewelry, valued at more than $100,000.

Gold Fashion Jewelry was robbed in 2009. Gold Fashion Jewelry was robbed in 2009. At sentencing, Williams faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 107 years in prison. Walker faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 82 years in prison.

According to trial testimony, on October 30, 2009, Williams and Walker sent crew members — one armed with a firearm — to ambush a postal employee who was opening the Postal Service branch office in Wyandanch, L.I. and forced the employee to open a safe in the post office. Williams directed the operation from a distance.

A second employee was also held at gunpoint after Williams alerted the robbers inside the post office of the second employee’s arrival. Williams, Walker and the two crew members fled with approximately $7,000, with Walker driving the getaway car.

Between November 2009 and March 2010, prosecutors said, Williams and Walker conspired to rob six banks in Nassau and Queens counties, recruiting two others to actually commit the robberies.

During five of the six bank robberies, the two co-conspirators, armed with a firearm, displayed what they claimed to be a bomb and threatened to detonate it if they did not receive money.

As a result of the robberies, the crew netted approximately $50,000.

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