PHOENIX, AZ (May 11, 2012) – Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Robert Gottsfield today sentenced Stephen Bernard Young (D.O.B. 9/17/59) to a 42-year term in the Arizona Department of Corrections for a string of bank and armored car robberies that took place during 2009 and 2010. He pled guilty to eight counts of armed robbery contained in three separate criminal indictments.
“Today’s sentence removes a dangerous repeat offender from our streets and ensures that he will no longer threaten public safety,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “I commend the superb cooperation among our law enforcement agency partners whose efforts allowed us to hold this defendant accountable for his actions,” he added.
On April 22, 2009, Young used a handgun to commit armed robbery of an armored car at a Fry’s Supermarket in Phoenix. He committed a similar holdup of another armored car two months later at a Walmart Store in Phoenix and again in September of 2010 at another Walmart in Glendale. Young also robbed three Bank of America branches at gunpoint, between May 2009 and August 2010.
During the most recent armored car robbery, Young walked up to guard Gregory Besemer and shot him twice in the leg and groin. The shooting was captured on store surveillance cameras and witnessed by store employees and customers. Investigators with the FBI Bank Robbery Task Force and the Glendale Police found Young’s fingerprints on a car he stole at gunpoint the day before the armored car robbery and subsequently abandoned after committing the robbery. They later traced Young to a hotel on North Black Canyon Highway in Phoenix and executed a search warrant on his hotel room and car, where they recovered $4,000 in stolen money hidden in the car’s engine compartment. Investigators also found a key to a storage locker, where they later recovered more than $86,000 in stolen money. Phoenix Police also assisted with the investigation.
In all, Young made off with approximately $229,383 from the series of robberies. He was sentenced to two consecutive 21-year terms in each of the three cases brought against him. The three sentences will run concurrently.