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Kevin Earl Elrod will spend 197 months in federal prison after his sentencing today in Raleigh for the armed heist of a Roanoke Rapids convenience store in February of 2018.

United States District Judge Louise W. Flanagan also ordered Elrod to five years of supervised release upon the completion of his sentence.

The robbery occurred at New Dixie Mart on Roanoke Avenue on February 8 of 2018.

Last July Elrod was named in a federal indictment charging him with robbery of a business engaged in interstate commerce and discharging a weapon in furtherance of a crime of violence.

The 28-year-old Roanoke Rapids man and a juvenile entered the store with a revolver in his hand. Both had their faces covered, according to a statement from United States Attorney Robert J. Higdon Jr.

Elrod immediately discharged the weapon into the ceiling of the store and demanded money from the clerk.

There were two customers in the store at the time of the robbery and Elrod forced them to lay on the floor.

Elrod forced the clerk to the cash register and he and the juvenile stole approximately $250.

The juvenile was apprehended the following day and implicated Elrod in the robbery.

A search warrant was executed on Elrod’s home where law enforcement found clothing that was used during the course of the robbery. He was apprehended a week after the robbery.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and “make our neighborhoods safer for everyone,” Higdon said in the statement.

Since 2017 the United States Department of Justice has reinvigorated the PSN program and has targeted violent  criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

That effort has been implemented through the Take Back North Carolina Initiative  of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina.

This initiative emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with law enforcement and district attorney offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the Roanoke Rapids Police Department as well as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Charity Wilson.