A 26-year-old Jacksonville man recently convicted of robbing two Jacksonville convenience stores at gunpoint about a year ago has been sentenced to 20 years in federal prison, authorities confirmed Thursday.
As part of his conviction, Kendall Deshun Lucas, 26, was positively identified by police as the person who robbed CJ's Quick Stop (once) and JJ's Food Store (twice in one day) on Oct. 14 and Oct. 22 respectfully.
As a result Lucas was charged in federal court for Hobbs Act violations for threatening violence while obstructing commerce by robbery.
Jacksonville Police Chief Reece Daniel said Lucas' identification and capture was the result of a Safe Streets Task Force investigation focusing on armed robberies, drug and weapons sales and other violent crimes in Jacksonville.
According to reports, Lucas was well-known to local police officers and had a previous criminal history.
He was sentenced Tuesday to 240 months, or 20 years in federal confinement with an additional three years of supervised release once he completes his sentence, records show.
Chief Daniel discussed the conviction Thursday because federal prosecutors did not have the resources due to the ongoing government shutdown.
But the chief said local officials “are well pleased” with the sentence and with the results of the cooperation with federal officials.
“Several more suspects are awaiting sentencing for crimes committed in Jacksonville in the past two years — and officials fully expect to see more arrests of career criminals in the near future,” Chief Daniel said.
Catching Lucas was't easy for authorities, reports show. At one point, he had evaded authorities during a foot chase in the Loop 456 and Highway 79 area, forcing them to follow in a police helicopter and with gracing dogs.
The Jacksonville Police, the Cherokee County Sheriff's Department, and the FBI were in dogged pursuit the entire time, but Lucas expertly navigated his way in and out of those woods.