Tobyhanna Man Sentenced To Seven Years’ Imprisonment For Brandishing A Firearm During A Crime Of Violence

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SCRANTON – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Lakeem Hunter-Knight, age 21, of Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania, was sentenced to seven years of imprisonment by U.S. District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion for brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.

According to United States Attorney John C. Gurganus, Hunter-Knight pointed a firearm at two victims during a robbery of the Pickerel Inn General Store, in Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania, on May 20, 2020.  During the robbery, Hunter-Knight made the victims lie on the ground face down and threatened to shoot them if they moved.  Hunter-Knight stole six firearms from the store, which is a federal licensed firearms dealer, before fleeing the scene.  He was later apprehended after investigators found two of the stolen firearms in an abandoned vehicle which also contained a GPS device showing Hunter-Knight’s home address.  The remaining firearms, along with other evidence, was found when investigators executed a search warrant at Hunter-Knight’s residence.  

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In addition to the seven-year imprisonment sentence, Judge Mannion ordered Hunter-Knight to serve three years of supervised release upon release from custody and to pay $4,000 in restitution to his victims.

The matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pocono Mountain Regional Police, the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office, and the Pike County District Attorney’s office. Assistant United States Attorney James Buchanan prosecuted the case.

This case was part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders works together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

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