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January 16, 2014

Third suspect in robbery string pleads guilty

DUNCAN — A Duncan man pleaded guilty to first degree robbery on Wednesday,  just a day after another man was hit with a 25-year prison term in a related stickup.

Quincy Sahtoren Barnes, 20, will serve 15 years in prison.

 Barnes was scheduled to stand trial on Wednesday but agreed to plead guilty after a jury sent Dakota John Smith to prison for 25 years in a different robbery.

 The jury verdict in the Smith case likely convinced Barnes to change his mind about going to trial, the county’s top prosecutor said.

“I’m not surprised at all he decided to plead guilty,” said District Attorney Jason Hicks.

“We picked up a new witness who could testify to all of Quincy’s involvement in the robbery. And the effect of the guilty verdict on Dakota probably helped convince him.”

Smith grabbed two 12-packs of beer from the Stripes convenience store, located at12th and Bois d’Arc,  while 18-year-old Tre Demetrius Babineaux pulled a gun to rob the place, investigators said.

Babineaux last December pleaded guilty to the Stripes robbery and two other holdups.

The three robberies all occurred within days of each other in late March last year, authories said.

“When the robberies started, all of us in law enforcement were extremely nervous,” Hicks said. “Investigators were giving out their numbers to store owners.”

 A fourth suspect who was arrested and charged following the skein of robberies is scheduled for trial on Feb. 5.

    Peyton Thad Graham, 20, who is charged with first-degree robbery in the holdup of the Love’s store at Second Main, has waived his right to a jury trial.

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