BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - A Kern County jury convicted two suspects today for robbery with a firearm and gang enhancements.
On Feb. 15, Charles Lawton and Dupree Langston were convicted of multiple counts of robbery with a firearm and gan enhancements, announced Kern County District Attorney Lisa Green.
The charges included the Oct. 30, 2011, robbery of the Max Muscle Store in Bakersfield, in which the victim of that robbery defended himself by using a firearm.
Lawton, 31, and Langston, 19, were members of the West Side Crips criminal street gang, according to reports.
From Sept. 30, 2011, through Nov. 2, 2011, officials said Lawton and Langston committed eight armed robberies of jewelry stores and check advance stores in Bakersfield, Delano, and Visalia.
During the crime spree, Lawton and Langston allegedly robbed employees at Gold Buys on Ming Avenue, Dollars for Gold on Niles Street, Advance America in Delano, Gold Rush Jewelers on Brundage Avenue, Auto Zone on Niles Street, Check into Cash in Visalia, Max Muscle on McNair Lane, and Allied Cash Advance in Delano.
Lawton and Langston were accused of brutalizing the victims during the robberies by pointing firearms at them and threatening to kill them. Some of the victims were beaten and some were forced to disrobe at gunpoint.
They allegedly stole a total of about $40,000.