A Kansas City man on Tuesday became the last in a group of five defendants to plead guilty for their roles in a string of robberies at Eastern Jackson County fast food restaurants in the fall of 2014.
William Parker III, 21, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to participating in the conspiracy to commit armed robberies, to one count of armed robbery and one count of using a firearm during a violent crime.
Four co-defendants have all pleaded guilty to their roles in the conspiracy and related charges. Mikah M. Labayen, 20, of Blue Springs, was sentenced to six years in federal prison without parole. Renargo L. Martin, 46, of Kansas City, was sentenced to five years in federal prison without parole. Jeremy “Heat” Hunter, 26, of Kansas City, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole. Isiah G. Etienne, 21, of Blue Springs, is scheduled to be sentenced on May 10.
The robberies took place at a Chipotle restaurant on Columbus Street in Lee’s Summit on Nov. 3, 2014, where they took $1,600; a Burger King restaurant on 39th Street in Independence on Nov. 10 ($914) and again on Nov. 30 ($565); and a Chipotle restaurant on Coronado Drive in Blue Springs on Nov. 16 ($6,800).
Court records say Etienne and Labayen worked at the Chipotle in Blue Springs, and used their knowledge of procedures at fast food establishments to carry out the robberies. The conspirators would wait until the end of the business day, then they rushed the back door when an employee took out the trash and forced a manager or shift supervisor to give access to the restaurant’s safe, using an assault rifle to threaten employees.
Following these robberies, Parker, Etienne and Labayen were captured after an attempted robbery of a motel.
Parker faces up to 40 years in federal prison without parole, plus a consecutive sentence of at least seven years in federal prison without parole for the firearm offense.