CONCORD – Jonathan McKnight, 39, of Manchester, pleaded guilty on Monday in federal court to interference with commerce by threats and violence by committing five robberies, Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley announced today.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on March 25, 2020, McKnight robbed a convenience store in Manchester. He passed a note to the clerk indicating he had a gun and that he wanted all the money. On March 28, 2020, McKnight robbed another convenience store in Manchester. He passed a note to the clerk ordering the clerk to give him the money. He further gestured toward his back waistband while lifting up his sweatshirt. An officer who reviewed the store video footage recognized McKnight as the person in the video. On March 30, 2020, Manchester police officers conducted a post-arrest interview with McKnight. He admitted to committing both robberies and passing the same note at each robbery. While acknowledging the had claimed to have a gun during the robberies, but he stated he did not possess a gun during the robberies.
On July 7, 2020, Manchester police officers responded to another robbery. The cashier gave the officers a description and told them that the robber had placed a note on the counter. The cashier gave him approximately $100-$150 from the drawer, mostly $1.00 bills. After reviewing the video footage, officers located McKnight wearing the same clothing worn by the robber. He had approximately $60, including approximately 25 $1.00 bills.
On March 7, 2021, and March 10, 2021, McKnight committed additional robberies at two separate locations in Goffstown. Investigators received a tip that McKnight committed both robberies and McKnight later admitted that he committed both robberies.
McKnight is scheduled to be sentenced on March 7, 2021.
“Robberies are violent crimes that can cause harm to victims and spread fear in communities,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Farley. “To protect the public from violent crime, we are working closely with all our law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute criminals like Mr. McKnight who threaten the community. Thanks to these joint efforts, McKnight’s robbery spree has been stopped and he has been held accountable for his unlawful actions.”
“Today Jonathan McKnight confessed to a string of convenience store robberies in which he threatened a firearm and terrorized innocent bystanders just to get his hands on some quick cash. Had he not been identified and arrested by investigators, there’s a good chance he’d still be at it,” said Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Boston Division. “The FBI and our partners at the Manchester Police Department are committed to taking violent criminals off the street to keep them from victimizing anyone else.”
These matters were investigated by the Manchester Police Department and Goffstown Police Department with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra Walsh.
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