Three Kansas City teenagers face federal charges after they allegedly pulled off several armed robberies in Independence and Kansas City in the past week.
Vonterrious Humbert and Henry Simmons, both 18, and 19-year-old Tremaine Johnson were charged in federal court Tuesday in Kansas City with participating in a conspiracy to commit armed robberies and with using a firearm during a violent crime. They remain in federal custody pending a detention hearing.
In all, the trio were part of five armed robberies of 7-Eleven stores in the early hours of Nov. 21 and three more robberies during the early morning hours of Sunday. They were arrested Tuesday, along with two juvenile boys, after an early-morning armed robbery at a Phillips 66 convenience store and attempted robbery of a Taco Bell on Barry Road in Kansas City in Platte County. The two juveniles are not identified in court documents.
Two of the 7-Eleven stores they allegedly hit on Nov. 21 were in Independence – 11001 E. 23rd St. and 12333 E. U.S. 40. Their targets on Sunday were a Domino's Pizza and 7-Eleven and Sinclair convenience stores in Kansas City
According the court documents, witnesses from some of the robberies identified a Dodge Durango SUV as a suspect vehicle. On Monday, officers saw the three men and two juveniles traveling in a 2003 Durango to about 15 to 20 convenience stores, fast-food restaurants and other business that are open late or continuously. They appeared to be casing the business – making slow, repetitive passes to observe business activity and occupants in advance of a possible robbery.
On Tuesday, the vehicle arrived at the shopping area at Barry Road and Ambassador Drive, just east of Interstate 29, and parked at nearby apartment complex. Humbert and Johnson walked across the street to the Phillips 66 while Simmons and a juvenile walked a bit further to the Taco Bell.
The Phillips 66 robbers stole about $400 at gunpoint, according to court documents, ran toward a wooded area near the apartments and were caught near a strip mall. Officers found the guns they had discarded along the way – a handgun with a laser sight and a rifle. At the same time, the attempted Taco Bell robbers tried to discard their guns – two loaded 9mm semi-automatic handguns – when officers approached and arrested them.
The second juvenile had been driving the SUV. When officers searched the vehicle they found a loaded .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun and a jar containing marijuana.