December 18, 2017
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Man gets 10 years for armed robbery of Maine medical marijuana provider

By Judy Harrison, BDN Staff
BDN File | BDN
BDN File | BDN
Xavier Watson

PORTLAND, Maine — A New Hampshire man was sentenced Wednesday in U.S. District Court to more than 10 years in prison for his role in an armed robbery of a licensed medical marijuana caregiver in Lyman, according to court records.

Xavier Watson, 24, of Brentwood, New Hampshire, pleaded guilty last year to one count each of robbery and brandishing a firearm in the furtherance of a crime of violence, the U.S. attorney’s office said in a news release.

He was sentenced to three years and one month on the robbery charge and a mandatory additional seven years on the gun charge.

By pleading guilty, Watson admitted he and four other men drove from New Hampshire to Lyman on Jan. 15, 2016, and broke into the home of the caregiver.

Watson had been held without bail since his arrest in New Hampshire a few days after the robbery. He originally was charged in state court. Information on the status of those charges was not available early Thursday.

The target of the robbery was a man who previously sold marijuana to one or more of the co-conspirators, according to the prosecution version of events to which Watson pleaded guilty. The purpose of the robbery was to obtain the proceeds of marijuana sales and of marijuana.

Watson and three of the men broke into the home, brandishing two firearms, the news release said. Watson carried a pistol, and co-defendant Vincent Casazza had a shotgun. Five victims — the caregiver; a 17-year-old girl; her father, who was in a wheelchair; and two of her friends — were in the home when the four men broke in. Watson assaulted a male victim and sexually assault the teenager, court documents said.

The robbers stole two shotguns, a rifle, several hundred dollars in cash, four cellphones and two laptops, Maine State Police said when Xavier was arrested a few days after the robbery.

Watson’s co-defendants, Vincent Casazza, 20, of Exeter, New Hampshire, Reynan Mora, 25, of Lowell, Massachusetts, and Andre Thomas, 21, of Lawrence, Massachusetts, have pleaded guilty to their involvement in the robbery but have not yet been sentenced, the news release said.

A fifth man, Michael Tolvanen, 20, of Exeter, New Hampshire, has been accused of driving the getaway car, according to the U.S. attorney’s office. He is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in federal court in Portland.

Watson faced up to 20 years in prison on the robbery charge and between seven years and life, to be served consecutively to any other sentence, on the gun charge.

 


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